We have all been witness to lots of successful and unsuccessful job searches.
This is probably the worst job market for new graduates and career changers in the last 24 years. Because most of us work in “lean” conditions, with more work on our plates than can be covered in the normal work day, employers and HR representatives and search teams are using as many criteria as possible to efficiently sift through the stacks of resumes received for each opening.
And even at the interview stage, they will likely see five or 10 highly qualified individuals which must be whittled down to two or three finalists. For those of you currently seeking a new position, below is some feedback we have collected over the years as to why a candidate was not selected.
- Candidate's hair was too wild
- Candidate was not wearing a proper business suit
- Candidate did not network with anyone in the company/division/group prior to the interview
- Candidate had a typo in his cover letter
- Cover letter could have been written for any other job at any other organization
- Bad breath
- Too much perfume/cologne
- Candidate had no questions for us
- Candidate had not done any research/hadn’t read my book
- No follow-up or thank you notes sent after interview
- Candidate yawned during dinner
Note that none of this has to do with qualifications or fit or interest. Remember, we all get rejected at one time or another – so please stay positive and try not to take it personally!
We hope you find this material helpful as you consider your strategy and approach to searching for a job.