How to Move Past Failure and Regret in Your Job Search

How to Move Past Failure and Regret in Your Job Search


In any sales process, there are bound to be ups and downs. Some tactics will work out, other approaches may not bear fruit, and there will almost certainly be times when failure rears its ugly head. Sales is rarely a linear procession towards a goal – you have to take the rough with the smooth.

Now, the thing is that far from all of us work in sales. We don’t often experience the pangs of failure and regret that most sales processes involve. However, every few years or so we do undertake a pretty vital sales process, the result of which will have a huge impact on our lives…. We need to sell ourselves in our job search.

Whatever past experience we may have had in previous job searches, most of us tend to hope for the best at the start of a new one. We have significantly more experience than last time and we feel that we have so much more to give. Surely the ride to the next job won’t be as bumpy.

Sorry to say, but bumps in any job search are virtually guaranteed.

If you have any hint of ambition in terms of the role that you are after or the company that you are looking to work for, you will be required to ask some difficult questions of yourself, and it is certain that others will ask plenty of tricky questions of their own. Some of the answers that you do give may not be up to scratch, but if you don’t put yourself in a position to be asked, you will never know.

When you are the “product” up for sale, rejection and disappointment comes with the territory. If you are not a fit for a role, you won’t be successful, but that doesn’t mean that you won’t be a fit for the next role. Moving past the knock-backs and moving onto the next opportunity with renewed energy is key to securing the best possible job.

When you are not used to the rough and tumble of a sales process, this isn’t easy.

You simply have to accept that you are not in total control.

It takes two to make a job offer, and when there are other candidates in the mix, you may not always be in the final reckoning. Accept it, move on and find that perfect match.

I like to think that I offer my candidates advice when and however I can. More often than not, much of my advice centres around moving past the setbacks. It is interesting how shocked people are when things don’t work out exactly as they planned, but I try to soften the blow as much as possible by telling them that this is simply how it goes.

You will encounter failure in your job search but blaming yourself or someone else is simply a waste of energy and offers no growth. Instead of blame, take something from it, consider what you have learnt and how it has helped you grow and more importantly remember – if you are not right for the job, it is not right for you!

Written by Alex Turner, Edited by Paul Drury

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