“Ambition is the path to success. Persistence is the vehicle you arrive in.”
– Bill Bradley
No one likes to deliver bad news, and job interviewers are no exception. Unfortunately, in our somewhat faceless society, it’s easy for them to hide behind voicemail and computer screens, holding on to valuable information that job seekers are desperately waiting for. They can beat around the bush for days, when urgency would be more courteous.
As a career coach, I recommend my clients show persistence and determination from Day One of their job search. These are both good qualities to have and portray as you encounter various people on your job search journey. Life can be lonely and the days between good news can be long.
Before you follow up about a job interview, be sure that the interview round has closed, and the employer has had a few days to make their decision. At that point it’s perfectly acceptable to call to the interviewer or executive recruiter to see where the land lies, and if they are advancing your candidacy.
But there is a fine line between being determined and being a pest. Once you’ve made four phone calls to the hiring authority, if you’re still not making headway it’s time to give up and move on. Conquer rejection!
There is always an exception to the rule. I know one executive recruiter who won’t return your call until you have placed five calls to them. This person sees tenacity as a good quality, but others may not, and calling so many times would upset the foundation you have laid.
Perhaps I am old-fashioned, but to me the best and most professional way of chasing people down is by phone. As a bonus, since email is the platform most people use, picking up the phone could really set you apart.
A well-planned, action-oriented and aggressive job search strategy should build in the opportunity to acquire multiple interviews and offers. While patience is a virtue, the quicker you can verify a “no,” the closer you’ll be to the next “yes.”
For success in today’s positive career economy, forget about the losses and look for more wins.
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