4 Job Search Nightmares That You Can Learn From

Man having a nightmare job search
Does your job search feel like a bumpy road? Are you losing patience with curve ball interviews, unexpected obstacles, rude employers, and surprise twists of fate? No matter how long and discouraging your job search journey may seem, somebody out there is having even more trouble than you.   Here are some classic examples we’ve recently received from our readers and job seeker contacts. Getting to grips with these horror stories might just help you write your own happy ending.

My former boss gave me a bad recommendation.

“I choose my list of references carefully…but as it turns out, I wasn’t careful enough. Almost everyone on my list gave me a great reference when my potential employer contacted them by phone or email. But my former boss, who I considered a friend of sorts, didn’t stand up for me when the questions got tricky. I heard through the grapevine that he gave a watered-down, neutral account of my skills and my tenure with the company. In the end, I didn’t get that job. I landed the next one, and I’m happily employed now, but I plan to be far more selective about my references in the future.”

The recruiter told me my grades were no good.

“A recruiter showed a high level of interest in me when she found out that I had the background and skill set that her clients were looking for. But as soon as she saw my GPA, her feelings changed. I graduated about two years ago, and my grades were mostly in the B and C range. She said this eliminated me from the job in question, and probably from most of the jobs that I had my sights set on. I felt very discouraged by this. After all, I can’t go back and change the past. As it turns out, I DID land a great job…but I had to adjust my expectations and start out in a lower rung on the ladder.”

I was called in for an interview, but then the line went silent.

“After two rounds of interviews with my target employer, the company just stopped returning my calls. I asked for an update several times, but after months, I’d received only silence. In the end, I had to assume that they had hired another candidate and never bothered to let me know. My lesson: never wait by the phone for a single employer. Keep moving, applying, and reaching out. I stopped putting my job search on hold to wait for answers. Now I’m a regional account manager.”

I was told I just didn’t have it.

“After telling me how excited they were about my resume, my target employer invited me in for an interview. They asked me questions and listened to my answers for 30 minutes before they finally told me I ‘just didn’t have what it takes’ to work there. What does that even mean? If they had given me a specific reason, it would have been easier to move on with my search. As it was, I just had to slink away and rebuild my confidence on my own. But I did rebuild that confidence…and I landed the very next job I found.” — To receive more inspiration for your job search, have a look at the awesome tools at MyPerfectResume.