People forget that the purpose of a job interview is not just to get the job. Sound strange to you? It’s not. You go to a job interview to discover whether your talents, abilities, interests and direction are a good fit for the job, the company, and the company’s mission.
During a job interview, you have the chance to present yourself professionally. Sometimes, if all else is a good match, you are selected for the job. Sometimes, the company’s needs and your strengths are not a good match. The job interview is the right time to discover this.
Smart Candidates Turn Down Second Job Interviews
Being exactly who you are – your best professional self - during a job interview is critical. Let your personality, interests and abilities shine through during the job interview. Provide the information needed for the employer to find out that you are a great match for the job – if you really are. Recently, two candidates turned down the opportunity to participate in a second job interview with a client company. Rather than feeling badly about it – they were both excellent candidates – I called each of them to discover why they ad turned down a second job interview. (A candidate who turns down a second job interview is rare indeed, and I wanted to know why.)
The first candidate, who currently works in advertising, said that she had participated in interviews at several companies. After learning about the job of an HR Assistant, she decided to pursue a different position within business for her work. She has eliminated both advertising and human resources as current career choices.
The second candidate, after learning about the benefits and career paths available in a smaller company, decided to stay with her major-sized employer. Sadly, locking on golden handcuffs at age twenty-five, and despite the fact that her career interests were more congruent with the smaller company, she eschewed the opportunity to retain her benefits and stay in her little box on the big organization chart.
Both candidates made good choices within their current understanding of themselves. The company is pleased that the managers did not invest months of work in training only to have the employee leave for a different opportunity. The employer was also happy he will not need to start over again in an employee search any time soon. (The company found the “right” employee during the next interview.)
This is an example of the interview process working well for both the candidate and for the company. When the appropriate match between talents, interests, direction, and abilities is missing, both the company and the candidate need to run - don’t walk – to their next interview.