Post interview blues
April 24, 2014 2:46 AM   Subscribe

My work history is. . diverse. I've a bunch of eclectic qualifications and skill sets that until very recently thought I'd never be able to put to good use in one place. I'm currently employed in an under paid, over worked position with a very low staff morale. I really want to get out but was struggling to see the way forward until couple of weeks ago a vacancy was brought to my attention by a friend who noticed it on a job site and immediately thought of me. When I read the job description I couldn't believe such a job existed.

It requires all my weird and particular qualifications and experience. It sounded amazing, like the kind of job I could see myself being happy to throw myself into completely. It's very well paid and aligned with my personal interests, passions and ability.

I sent in a strong application and felt confident I'd get an interview. I was right and not only that but they asked if I would consider taking on a partial managerial role. I was delighted and replied that it was something I'd be happy to discuss at the interview.

The interview was yesterday and I gave a good presentation but didn't answer all the questions as well as I could have and didn't expand enough on my ideas. I'm suremy passion came through and I do feel that they liked me, there was smiles and got them laughing a few times.. However, the managerial role wasn't even discussed and at the end the director commented that the standard of applicant was very high, that they had to turn down good candidates for interview even and that everyone they'd met so far had been excellent . He said it was going to be as very difficult decision and I'd know by Friday (tomorrow) or Monday If they need to think on it more.

There are three positions going, two project officers and a managerial tole, they have been interviewing for three days and now that I've had my chance I'm full of doubt and dread.

I have never wanted a job the way I want this one, I feel like it was made for me and everything in my life has lead up to this possibility. If I do get this job, it's going to feel like winning the lottery. I'm trying to keep a calm head but I'm worried how to move on if I don't get it. I've already started looking around to see if I could find something even vaguely similar but this seems like a unique position.

Tldr, If I don't get the job of my dreams and have to accept being stuck in my current job for the foreseeable future, what are mindsets I can adopt to not become disheartened and demoralised?
posted by kudra23 to Work & Money (11 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Is there anything you can send now - a follow-up email clarifying some points where you felt you didn't make a strong case in the interview - to help them decide that you ARE the correct candidate for the job?
posted by stevedawg at 3:04 AM on April 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Wondered about that but was advised against it by couple of professional minded friends.
posted by kudra23 at 3:10 AM on April 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

It's okay. What you don't know is tht if you don't get this job, you end up following a totally unbelievable pathway and take on a rewarding, interesting, challenging job that you've never heard of before. (Me too, because that's how it works nowadays for us smart creative people who keep adding strings to our violin - or whatever). Keep your resume /portfolio etc up to date, keep networking. This is not the only offer. I know, because I get them all the time, and I'm a fat old lady bogan in Australia. If you build it (skills, aptitude, passion, knowledge) they will come.

Also, complete atheist.
posted by b33j at 3:14 AM on April 24, 2014 [7 favorites]

well, now you know jobs like this exist, and you can research similar companies who might have similar roles and apply for those too. I'm sure this is not the only job/company of its kind.
posted by corvine at 3:33 AM on April 24, 2014 [3 favorites]

Yeah don't send a follow up note; it won't change any minds and if they have a question they will follow up.

Regardless of how you go, even if you don't get this job this time, it doesn't mean you won't ever work for this org, or in this kind role. Just make sure you keep moving in the right direction, career wise, and you will get there. Also stay in touch with the org.
posted by smoke at 3:49 AM on April 24, 2014

Post interview l'esprit de l'escalier is normal but isn't necessarily accurate. I'm a consultant and so I have to interview for jobs all the time. What I've learned (and what helps me recover from disappointment) is that I need to trust the clients to make the choice that's right for them and that I can't know all the factors. Per various post mortems I've discovered that I've won and lost jobs for all sorts of reasons reflecting something important enough to the client that it became a factor. Sometimes I actually agree with them that X is the better fit (I know my competitors). Some interviews feel great but I don't win the work while others feel like lost causes and yet I prevail. So long as I've given them the tools to make a clear choice, I've done my part in their process. You did that so try to relax. Losing out is still disappointing, but new opportunities really do always arise.
posted by carmicha at 4:29 AM on April 24, 2014 [2 favorites]

Best answer: I'm a manager currently going through a hiring process for a creative, unique role. I would advise against sending anything like what stevedawg proposes. However, a polite, enthusiastic thank you email is always a great idea.

Also, I wouldn't assume all is lost. It sounds like your interview went fine.

As for how to cope if you don't get the job, well now you know this kind of work exists. These roles may be uncommon, but I doubt they are the only ones like them that exist at all - and I say that as someone in a highly specialized field.

If you don't get the job, I would suggest reaching out to the hiring managers and asking one of them to meet with you for a more informal conversation about the field and how you can find another role like this - what you can do to make yourself a stronger candidate, and even how yo look for these jobs (they may be posted with different keywords, for instance). If a candidate I turned down asked me to of this, I would agree with no question, and would be more likely to hire them next time. It can't hurt to ask, anyway! But wait and see how the hiring process goes.

Good luck!
posted by lunasol at 4:31 AM on April 24, 2014 [4 favorites]

Interviews are crapshoots. You might lose the job because somebody else went to the same school as the hiring manager, and they connected over stories of tailgating on Saturday mornings. There is so much out of your control that there is nothing to be gained by beating yourself up over the interview after the fact. Build on the momentum of getting this interview by looking for the next one. You've figured out what you want - that's a huge accomplishment on its own.
posted by COD at 5:07 AM on April 24, 2014 [3 favorites]

If you don't get this job, then you have a really good idea about what the "job of your dreams" looks like, and you can look for similar companies who may need similar candidates to you. Is there a way to create a position like that for yourself in the company where you are? Sometimes, getting the job you want involves creating the job that you want.
posted by xingcat at 5:41 AM on April 24, 2014 [2 favorites]

Wait, did you send a thank you email after the interview? I was always taught that that is your opportunity to *briefly* restate the benefits of making the decision to hire you.

You would NOT say anything like, "in our interview, I felt I may have been unclear about..." It should be along the lines of "Thanks for meeting with me. It was great learning more about the specifics of your Artisanal Process. I wanted to reiterate how excited I was to find an opportunity that aligns so perfectly with interests and passions in widgetmaking, and the skills I have developed in the course of my career in skulduggery and spycraft."

I also find that this post-interview restatement process also really helps me focus on what went well in the interview, and is therefore the stuff I want to use in the future. Even if you don't get this job, there are so many aspects about the process that are to your net benefit.

Good luck!
posted by lesli212 at 9:49 AM on April 24, 2014 [3 favorites]

I've been you in seeing the "designed for me" job, except I didn't get it. I saw the perfect job advertised, at my current job, and then found out two days after the interview it had been designed for someone else already and I was tokenly being interviewed to be "fair." Even worse, it was intended for someone already here and they literally APPLAUDED HER EVERY DAMN WEEK at every staff meeting FOR OVER A MONTH about how super awesome it was that she got that job and she's so very happy and smiling in it now! While I had to sit there with a fake face. So the situation basically came out as bad as it possibly could be for me.

How do you deal with losing that job? You suck it up and keep doing the shit job you're in with no hope of escape and...that's it. That's life. You will deal with it if and when you have to. And yeah, I can't find shit along those lines for a job again and probably never will. But I am throwing myself into my job and being as perfect at it as I possibly can be, because I may never be able to get out and I'd rather not get canned, eh? My mindset is that I guess God wants me to be in this job and learn to love it, dammit, so I'd better learn to love it. And it honestly helps.
posted by jenfullmoon at 6:32 PM on April 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

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