‘We’ll Get Back to You Next Week’

How many times have you left a job interview and either due to your enthusiasm for the job; the positive vibe you received from the interviewer(s); or the need for work, actually waited patiently for the phone call or email with a decision?

If I could count the number of times, this has happened to me over the years, I wouldn’t be writing this post. And, more significantly, I know the usual answers when two weeks later you try to get some feedback: Either “We’ve been extremely busy” or “We have decided to broaden the search.”

Even worse: You continue to wait and look at job postings and see the same job you interviewed a month before posted again.

I realize this will not endear me to any potential employers, nor will it enhance my chances of getting my dream job.

But here is what I have learned after years of on-and-off job search, when stability became an issue:

  • When you hear: “We’ll get back to you in a week,” don’t believe it.
  • Don’t take it personally; it seems to be in the handbook handed out to hiring managers and subsequent interviewers.
  • Do not get discouraged; accept it as a part of the process.

back to normal

I feel inclined to share one story; names withheld to protect the guilty:

I interviewed with three people at the same shop — not a group interview, but three separate individuals — and was told how impressed they were with my credentials. But before I could be put on the dreaded “short list” there was one more thing they would like me to do.

It was not exactly a writing test, they said, but would give them an indication of how I dealt with raw material — and I could do it at home and it was short.

Fair enough, or so I thought at the time, as all the other buttons clicked. And as one of the required questions we are told to ask at the end of every interview, I asked once the “non-test” was completed, when would I hear from them again.

You can guess the answer.

Well, this is what I received in an email: a 20-page, single-spaced document to edit in track changes; a request to write a 500- to 800-word blog; and an application that asked everything except my original hair color — when I had some.

Though slightly perplexed, I did all I was told. I waited two weeks to see what the status was and was told it would take a few more days. Then I saw the job posted again.

My reaction — aside from this post — was a smile. Why?

Because this is a buyers’ market; the job seeker becomes secondary to filling the post; and more often than not I probably knew more about the position than the contacts at the company.

Yes, I have read all the suggestions made for crafting a resume, writing a cover letter, how to find contacts and what to do as follow ups.

But one thing I have not seen is advice to the employer on how to treat a prospective employee, who truly wants the job or probably would not have shown up.

This is not a plea for sympathy; this is an example of what is done in civil society.

One last thing: I could do a whole other post on: “You were one of two final candidates.”

I’ll save your reading time.

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