Interview Feedback

Getting Feedback when Job Hunting

To properly arm and prepare yourself for the next interview it is usually vitally important that you elicit feedback on why you did not get that job you have just interviewed for. Wondering why you failed the last interview doesn’t instill confidence in you when going for the next one.
But when and how should you ask for feedback and is it always useful?
As most of us know getting feedback isn’t always the easiest of tasks because basically the chances are that your interviewer doesn’t know you particularly well and doesn’t really have the will or, the time to defend their position, especially after having imparted sensitive feedback, so they don’t give feedback or they make it bland and neutral.
In the absence of feedback you first have to analyse yourself, your own interview performance. If you know you underperformed, answered questions wrongly or appropriately, babbled, waffled, gave minimalist answers then you probably already know why you failed to get the job anyway. If you weren’t bothered about the job, then this probably reflected in your performance. Either way you shouldn’t waste valuable time and energy pursuing feedback. Just learn from your mistakes and move on.
On the other hand if it was a job you really wanted and you thought your interview performance was good and/or your self confidence has been shaken then you should always seek feedback. Whether that feedback is available or even useful is another matter.
So how do you try and get that feedback. Write a request thanking your prospective employer for the chance to interview and that you would like to interview for them again in the future. Ask for honest feedback but be warned you might have to be persistent.
When you receive the feedback ensure you remain positive and don’t be defensive; ask for clarification if appropriate, whatever that feedback is. Ask them what differentiated you from the person who got the job to enable you to work on those areas. Emphasize the fact that you still wish to work for that company and above all remain cool, calm, keen and professional at all times. Doing this will ensure that you are able to move to your next interview with more confidence.
After receiving your feedback don’t forget to write a friendly thank you email/mail emphasizing how valuable the feedback was to you.

Steve Blythe (Recruitment and Social Media Commentator).

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