So you’re going through your job interview, and everything appears to be smooth sailing. You’re confident that you’ve given great answers, and you could tell from the interviewer’s facial expressions and body language that you’re going to get a favorable response. Halfway through the interview, however, as the employer proceeds with the specifics of the job, the company, and the compensation, you realize that you are in the wrong place. What then should you do? Read along these tips so you know how to handle your disappointment graciously.
1. Inquire about the job.
If the job appears inappropriate for you, then you should make clarifications. You need to figure out whether the job really matches your expectations, and have a more detailed conversation with the employer about it. Ask if there’s a way for you to advance your career if you accepted the job. You’ll never know if a seemingly sour deal could turn out into a sweet one. Remember: if in doubt, validate it. Don’t jump into conclusion of turning down an offer just because it didn’t make a good impression on you.
2. Maintain a respectful attitude.
Always be polite to the interviewer even if you know deep inside that you won’t take the job offer. Be mindful of your gestures and facial expression; don’t give the interviewer an idea that you are disinterested or distracted with what is being relayed to you.
3. It pays to be honest and tactful.
These two traits always work hand in hand. Master the art of getting your point across without being offensive and aggressive. No need to be vocal with everything that you have in mind. Pick the things that you want to discuss with your interviewer. If you were already given an idea of how much the salary will be and you think it isn’t enough to meet your needs, then just try to keep it to yourself. On the other hand, if you simply think you’re overqualified, you should at least try to explain to him why you’re not the right fit for the job. Similarly, if you think you are not capable of handling late-night shifts, then you should openly tell him that.
4. Inquire about other job positions.
Sometimes it happens that you were just offered with a job that doesn’t fit your qualifications, but you get to like the company as a whole. Instead of closing your doors, it is much better to ask the interviewer if there are any other jobs available. Who knows, there’s a job that fits you better all along. It is perfectly acceptable to ask for other positions, but you should only ask after explaining the reasons why you think the first job isn’t fit for you.
5. Keep a positive attitude.
Even if you feel disappointed about the outcome of the interview, remember that you just have to keep your chin up. It pays to be positive each and every time, and it will always reflect on your behavior. Why feel so bad about it – when you can always look elsewhere for a job? Avoid thinking too much and give them the benefit of the doubt. The mismatch probably wasn’t a big deal, and it doesn’t mean they are insulting you. Keep a positive attitude and avoid any comment that maybe taken negatively by the employer.
6. Never walk out.
You may feel like getting up and walking out halfway through the interview, with the intent of not wasting neither your time nor the interviewer’s. While it is justifiable, it is one thing you wouldn’t anyone to do unto you. So if you sense that the job isn’t what you are looking for, you should at least do your best to wait till the end of the interview.
7. Treat the interview as an opportunity to network.
There is always something positive about everything, and even if the interview didn’t turn out as expected, you still were able to connect to other professionals. The established contact may prove to be useful at another time or situation, and the interviewer may refer you to other hiring managers that can help you more in your search for a job. The interview is not just a job application process, but an opportunity to build relationships that can benefit your career. It pays to have a wide network of contacts; you’ll never know what’s in store for you.
8. Don’t give unsolicited advice.
You should always maintain composure and stay in line. The purpose of the interview is to let the employer assess your capability as a potential employee and to see if a good deal can be worked out between you and them. While it is normal to turn down any offer in a professional manner, you are not there to give any advice on how the company should run things. It’s a no-no to criticize them, and it’s inappropriate to voice your opinion about them.
9. Let the meeting end naturally.
Ending the meeting in a positive light might even result in another opportunity that could work for you. A simple “thank you” would do.
10. You don’t need to say you’re sorry.
Nobody offended anybody, and that is what professionalism should be about. Always keep things in the right perspective, and move on. Don’t do anything that will result in unnecessary conflict, and don’t give negative feedback to other people regarding your experience about the interview.
Interviewing is pretty much like dating: some turn out great, while some don’t. You can’t control the outcome, so the best thing to do about it is just to make the most out of things in a positive way. If you think the job being offered isn’t a good fit for you, simply look for one that does.
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