Have you ever been ghosted during the interview process? It can be frustrating to invest time and effort into an opportunity, only to be met with silence.
While it’s important to maintain professionalism and follow up with the employer or most likely the agent, it’s also important to recognise that being ghosted may be less about you, and more about focusing on getting one candidate through the door.
Remember, the interview process is a two-way street, and it’s just as important for the company to make a good impression on you as it is for you to impress them, but when not selected for a role, your views hold little sway in the grand scheme of things.
What is ghosting in the context of a Job Interview
In the realm of job interviews, ghosting entails the feeling that a prospective employer has abruptly cut off communication with a job candidate at any stage of the interview process. This unexpected halt in correspondence can occur after an initial phone screen, following a promising face-to-face interview, or even after an extensive series of interactions. The impact of ghosting on job candidates cannot be understated, as it leaves the job seeker, having put considerable emotional and physical capital into the process, with as little much as a breakdown, of what went wrong. Leaving the once-confident job seeker in a state of confusion, frustration, and, at times, a sense of helplessness.
When faced with such a disheartening situation, one may wonder if therapy is necessary to cope with the emotional fallout of being ghosted during the interview process. However, whether therapy is required depends on the individual and their unique coping mechanisms, and possibly if the number of these types of experiences has begun to impact the job seeker’s own self-worth. It is entirely natural to feel disappointed and disheartened after experiencing ghosting, but it’s crucial to remember that this occurrence does not define your worth as a person or a professional. It is not a reflection of your abilities or character, it is more a mark of the realities of a very competitive job market and an under-utilised communication framework.
Balancing the perspective, it’s important to acknowledge that ghosting is not solely an issue arising from the company’s actions. While it may seem like an unprofessional and inconsiderate act, understanding the dynamics of job applications can offer some insights. Firms often have to handle a significant number of applications, making it challenging for them to provide individualised feedback to every candidate. This overwhelming process can lead to some unfortunate lapses in communication, often a touch base with the recruitment agent may be able to plug in some of the reasons for the unsuccessful selection. Often the difference between selection or non-selection could be based on exposure to a particular system, or project experience, or they just fitted in better with the corporate culture, which may be even more challenging to break down that feedback into something useful.
Nevertheless, this does not excuse the behavior or alleviate the frustration that job candidates experience when ghosted. Organisations should strive to improve their communication practices to enhance the candidate experience. Prompt and considerate feedback, even if it’s a rejection, can go a long way in providing closure and maintaining the employer’s reputation in the job market.
In conclusion, the experience of being ghosted during a job interview can be distressing, but it is essential to maintain a balanced perspective. While firms do face challenges in managing the application process, it’s crucial to remember that ghosting is not a personal attack on your abilities or character. Coping mechanisms may vary among individuals, and seeking therapy might be beneficial for some, but ultimately, fostering resilience and a positive outlook can help navigate the emotional challenges associated with job hunting and the occasional disappointment of ghosting. Furthermore, employers should be mindful of their communication practices to create a more respectful and transparent hiring process for all candidates involved.
Why Applicant Feedback might not be on the to-do list
It’s important to note that while it can be frustrating for candidates, there are several factors that may contribute to this lack of communication:
- Time Constraints: Companies/Agents often receive a large number of applications for a single job opening. Reviewing each application and providing personalised feedback can be time-consuming, and with the volume of candidates, it becomes challenging to respond to everyone individually. If you make the shortlist, you’re still owed some notes on your approach.
- Company Policy: Some organisations have policies that prioritise providing updates only to shortlisted candidates or those who have progressed to the final stages of the interview process. This is done to maintain efficiency and allocate resources effectively. It may not be on the call sheet, but most agents if you can get them on the end of the line, should at least provide you with some feedback, you just might have to do some digging.
- Legal Concerns: In some cases, companies may be cautious about providing detailed feedback to candidates due to potential legal implications. They may worry about inadvertently providing information that could lead to discrimination claims or legal disputes.
- Fear of Conflict: Rejecting candidates can sometimes lead to uncomfortable conversations or conflicts. To avoid such situations, some agents or companies may choose not to respond or provide detailed feedback, selection between candidates may be as nuanced as a team fit perspective i.e. different team, and a different outcome. Sometimes such feedback may not be as useful as one might think.
- Limited Resources: Smaller companies or startups with limited human resources may struggle to provide updates to every candidate due to their size and capacity. Agents fill the communication void and they themselves at times seem stretched.
- Change in Hiring Needs: Sometimes, the company’s hiring needs change unexpectedly during the process. As a result, they may decide not to fill the position, or they might opt for a different set of skills or qualifications.
When to Seek Therapy
Being Ghosted is another way of seeing, chase me for an update.
If you find yourself struggling to cope with the general interview process, it may be helpful to seek therapy. If you find yourself in need of a supportive environment to navigate your emotions and seek assistance in developing effective coping strategies to handle life’s ups and downs, disappointments, and frustrations, as well as to potentially build resilience, therapy can be a valuable resource. Moreover, therapy can aid you in recognising any negative thought patterns or beliefs that might be contributing to your distress and help you in challenging and overcoming them.
That being said, not everyone will need therapy to cope with being ghosted during the interview process. It’s normal to experience a range of emotions when job searching, including disappointment and frustration. It’s important to allow yourself time to process these emotions and to practice self-care during this time. This can include engaging in activities that bring you joy, connecting with friends and family, and practicing mindfulness or meditation.
Being ghosted during the interview process is an unfortunate reality for many job seekers. While it can be a frustrating and disheartening experience, it’s important to remember that this is not a reflection of your worth as a person or as a professional. While therapy can be helpful for those who are struggling to cope, it’s not necessary for everyone. Whatever your experience, remember to be kind to yourself and practice self-care during these challenging times. Reach out if you think the Bohangar City Practice can help you!