DEALING WITH REJECTION

A key part of successful interviews is dealing with rejection: You probably don’t have the skill of Chip, who is undoubtedly an expert in dealing with rejection, so work on improving this skill. Don’t take rebuffs personally; they’re just part of the process. Remember the easiest thing for an interviewer to say is no. He or she will say no if he or she has any doubts. Don’t accept it, keep the conversation going. Ask a question, or “May I make
another point?” As long as there’s a dialogue, there’s a chance. “No” doesn’t mean “no.” It means you haven’t convinced the interviewer.
Probe for the real reason you were rejected. Often the first reason isn’t the real reason. Ask “Why?” or “Would you expand on that?”

If you feel you’re being judged unfavorably against an interviewer’s hidden agenda, take the offensive. Initiate the subject even if it’s illegal for the interviewer to bring it up. Such a hidden agenda may be age, lack of specific experience, or ability for a man to work for a woman or for a much younger person. For example, if age is the issue, describe your experience of working well with a younger boss, your record of being accepted by junior people who regularly have sought your advice, and how younger employees ask you to socialize with them. Emphasize
your recent work with long hours under pressure, demonstrate that your skills are state of the art, or specify that you’re an active person in an athletic or fitness program.

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