I recently made a bold move by applying for a different job within my place of work. The hiring director (my current boss) voiced excitement at my interest and an interview was quickly scheduled. I was confident going into the interview, but midway … something felt off. Fast-forward three weeks, and I was not offered the position. I was disappointed, but it felt good to dip my toes back into the job hunt game. In hindsight, there were a few red flags suggesting I wasn’t going to be extended a job offer.
Waiting Too Long
I am ready for a change. But, I made the mistake of putting my job hunt on hold waiting to hear back from my manager. It’s an easy mistake to make. Unfortunately, you could wait weeks or even months when the decision has already been made to not hire you. Why would the hiring manager leave you dangling, even after a decision is made. Well, there are several possible reasons. For example:
They are required to interview a set number of candidates, even if they already know who will fill the position.
They may be fishing for new ideas and insights by scheduling multiple interviews.
So what do the experts say? The answer is … don’t wait. Immediately shift your focus and efforts on getting the potential job interview.
You Might Not Have The Job If ...
As the clock ticked and days passed, I actually typed in “signs I don’t have the job” as an internet search. I’d like to share some of the signs I discovered and what made them relatable in my situation.
RED FLAG #1
The potential employer told you they had an “urgent” need to fill the position and scheduled an interview within days. However, it seems the brakes are pumped hard after you interview.
I was originally told the position would need to be filled within a matter of days. Two weeks later… still no word.
RED FLAG #2
You arrive at your interview, but fewer people are sitting in than you were initially told.
I was expecting 4 people to sit in on my interview, however, only 2 were actually present. One of the missing interviewers was from upper management and would give the final “OK”.
RED FLAG #3
The interviewers share their concerns about your background, skills or cultural fit.
During my interview, only a limited number of questions were asked about the actual job. I was asked several “sidebar” questions, such as
“Will you be able to adjust to 5 days a week vs. three 12 hour shifts?”
“Don’t you have a long commute?”
“Can you adjust to working during the day?”
RED FLAG #4
The interview was cut short.
After about 20 minutes, one of the interviewers began to awkwardly check the time repeatedly. Even worse, she began to cut the 2nd interviewer's questions short.
RED FLAG #5
The interview went great, but you’re seriously ghosted when trying to contact the hiring manager.
My director became an apparition after the interview. Once I was able to follow-up with her, I was given a new “deadline” for their final decision.
RED FLAG #6
You're told the hiring process has slowed down because “an internal candidate has come forward”.
After 3 weeks, my director explained how shocked she was when a person who had previously held the position reached out to her. At that moment, all the red flags made sense.
RED FLAG #7
The interview ends and you feel like you're being rushed to leave the building.
RED FLAG #8
The interview abruptly ends and the manager seems more than ready to move on to the next meeting.
RED FLAG #9
Your follow-up emails go unanswered.
RED FLAG #10
You’re specifically asked for references, but they are never contacted.
Hiring is a Process
It’s important to remember that the hiring process takes time and patience. Even if you pick up on a few red flags, it doesn’t mean you are out of the game. Here are a few tips on what you can do after the interview to stand out from the rest.
Send a thank-you email and outline 3 day reasons you're still interested in the job and what makes you a good fit.
Don’t keep asking for updates. If you were told a decision would be made in 3 weeks and 4 weeks have passed… move on to your next potential interview.
When you're feeling discouraged, remind yourself that every interview is great practice for continuing your journey towards a better job.
Let’s Hear From You
Tell us about a “red flag moment” you’ve experienced as part of the hiring process. Was the end-game worth the frustration?
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