How do you get over a failed interview?

Everything about application processes, test, interviews, offers etc. Also share your success stories in this forum!
Post Reply
Amber
Posts: 14
Joined: 19 Dec 2018, 04:09
Has thanked: 4 times
Been thanked: 3 times

How do you get over a failed interview?

Post by Amber » 25 Dec 2018, 16:54

I was just wondering if anyone had made it to the last round of interviews and ended up NOT being selected.

How does one get over this?

User avatar
Sebastian
Posts: 267
Joined: 19 Jul 2018, 08:33
Has thanked: 99 times
Been thanked: 78 times

Re: How do you get over a failed interview?

Post by Sebastian » 26 Dec 2018, 10:14

Amber wrote: ↑
25 Dec 2018, 16:54
I was just wondering if anyone had made it to the last round of interviews and ended up NOT being selected.

How does one get over this?
I think this is a great question! We have seem many on this board submitting many applications. How do you not get discouraged? How do you keep going?

One thought I would have with regards to your question is that getting to the interview stage is a great success! It means you beat the odds and made it through long-listing, short-listing and most likely trough a technical test! That's quite amazing!

Also, what I would do is to try to learn from this process and evaluate what went well/didn't go well in the interview to be even better next time.

Good luck!
I'm Sebastian from the UN Job List. I know about the UN Job List and also a little about the UN in general.

Jannu
Posts: 19
Joined: 10 Aug 2018, 08:33
Been thanked: 5 times

Re: How do you get over a failed interview?

Post by Jannu » 27 Dec 2018, 08:54

Always take it as a success when you make it to the interview. You made it to the top. But it is really hard to evaluate it by all yourself because lack of background knowledge. Better not to spend too much time thinking what went wrong. Now you know the process better and what to expect.
After all it could be that your interview went all good and other candidate did same but that one had something more in work experience etc.

H.O.P
Posts: 101
Joined: 21 Sep 2018, 11:51
Has thanked: 39 times
Been thanked: 30 times

Re: How do you get over a failed interview?

Post by H.O.P » 27 Dec 2018, 10:45

Amber wrote: ↑
25 Dec 2018, 16:54
I was just wondering if anyone had made it to the last round of interviews and ended up NOT being selected.

How does one get over this?
I remember the first IGO interview I was not successful at. It was for their YPP programme and that year was my last eligible year (age wise). Actually, I initially made it to the top 5 slots of those they wanted, but the issue of quota came in (in the 5 slots were 2 people from the same country, I and another candidate). Unfortunately, I was not favoured and I was the one dropped. I cried so hard for a week. Could not really get over it for a long time. But, looking back now, I see the positive side of it. I would not have been able to juggle everything I had at the time which would have seen me travelling frequently between 3 continents. My second failed interview for another IGO I did not feel as bad as the first, I was sad for a few days but motivated myself to send in even more applications (this time I overhauled my CV, improved my interview skills-learning how to do a competency-based interview, followed a few groups of like-mind job seekers at IGOs etc.). I have gotten to two interviews since then for IGOs and I got one of them and haven't heard back from the other.
It will be tough at first, but it can be a learning moment too. These days I no longer get as affected and simply just send more applications :D 😁

mdr
Posts: 55
Joined: 12 Sep 2018, 12:08
Has thanked: 35 times
Been thanked: 31 times

Re: How do you get over a failed interview?

Post by mdr » 29 Dec 2018, 14:26

Amber wrote: ↑
25 Dec 2018, 16:54
I was just wondering if anyone had made it to the last round of interviews and ended up NOT being selected.

How does one get over this?
I've only had 3 interviews and made it on my 3rd but that was all out of over 300 applications in 3 years :lol: In other words, over 300 rejections :lol: I am aware it may be a different experience for someone who has been able to make it to most of their interviews from their applications but has not been able to get in yet like my friend who keeps getting to the interview stage. I understand her frustration is much different than mine as it feels like she's always so close to getting it. In my case, the interviews were a rarity in itself but after the 40th rejection, I just felt a little numb to it and it didn't really bother me because a) I knew it was going to be hard (although maybe not this hard..) and b) I didn't see the point of stopping when I wasn't even there yet, y'know? Also, personally, I've had a lot of experience with failure so a rejection (even hundreds of them) is not something I allow to get in the way of my goals. I honestly was going to keep at it until I get in. Got the 1st interview and it was a roller coaster of emotions and stress as it was the 1st time I had gotten that far. I think I let my nerves get the better of me and it definitely wasn't easy thinking that I was this close to getting the job and it was utter torture having to wait and worry about the results. At that time, I had the 2nd interview (for a different job) lined up almost immediately which I did a little better but I learned the hard way just how long and tedious the UN recruitment process was- it took forever for them to inform me of my rejection and there were a few opportunities I didn't take because I thought I was almost there so pro tip no.1- don't hold your breath. Not even after you received your offer as anything can happen (not until you signed the contract at least or relocated). That's why I wish I had come across Sebastian's site sooner or had someone told me that the process was insanely long.

In my 3rd interview, I was much better prepared and felt confident in the first part but I genuinely thought I screwed up on the 2nd. I was so depressed for a couple of days- it was so hard not to repeat the disaster that was my 2nd interview and be haunted by it but you know what, I was so indignant that immediately after, I applied for 2 new jobs and continued for the next few days because mind you, I was pretty much applying almost every week for 3 years. Even now, I am still receiving rejection letters. So my take is if you really want 'the job', you're not gonna let one or a hundred rejections stop you. And certainly not from applying for other UN jobs. I have a friend who got in with only ONE application. And she even got in to my dream Duty Station. I was happy for her but imagine how bitter I felt inside because to me, I struggled so much more and for longer but my UN journey just happened to be tougher and if anything, it has nurtured my resilience especially to failures. When you fail enough times, you realize that it's best to move forward as quickly as possible- to spend more time and energy towards self-improvement rather than worrying on what could have been. I know it's difficult but don't let a rejection affect you so personally because once the interview is done, the reality is there isn't much else you can do about the outcome so it's better to take the best and most valuable parts of a failure and strive to be better for the next opportunity.

mdr
Posts: 55
Joined: 12 Sep 2018, 12:08
Has thanked: 35 times
Been thanked: 31 times

Re: How do you get over a failed interview?

Post by mdr » 29 Dec 2018, 14:39

H.O.P wrote: ↑
27 Dec 2018, 10:45
Amber wrote: ↑
25 Dec 2018, 16:54
I remember the first IGO interview I was not successful at. It was for their YPP programme and that year was my last eligible year (age wise). Actually, I initially made it to the top 5 slots of those they wanted, but the issue of quota came in (in the 5 slots were 2 people from the same country, I and another candidate). Unfortunately, I was not favoured and I was the one dropped. I cried so hard for a week. Could not really get over it for a long time. But, looking back now, I see the positive side of it. I would not have been able to juggle everything I had at the time which would have seen me travelling frequently between 3 continents. My second failed interview for another IGO I did not feel as bad as the first, I was sad for a few days but motivated myself to send in even more applications (this time I overhauled my CV, improved my interview skills-learning how to do a competency-based interview, followed a few groups of like-mind job seekers at IGOs etc.). I have gotten to two interviews since then for IGOs and I got one of them and haven't heard back from the other.
It will be tough at first, but it can be a learning moment too. These days I no longer get as affected and simply just send more applications :D 😁
Oh wow! More or less similar experience especially with the roller coaster of emotions from failing the 1st interview, and using that experience as a motivator. Personally, I'm glad that I won't have to apply for anything until after 1 year has passed :lol: Haha I even unsubscribed to many of my UN/IGO job alerts. It's so crazy now looking back at how much of a routine I had made of it but in a way, having it as a routine allowed me some sort of emotional detachment to the process. A rejection always sucks no matter what but it's a big problem when you let it affect you so personally.

H.O.P
Posts: 101
Joined: 21 Sep 2018, 11:51
Has thanked: 39 times
Been thanked: 30 times

Re: How do you get over a failed interview?

Post by H.O.P » 29 Dec 2018, 15:04

mdr wrote: ↑
29 Dec 2018, 14:39
H.O.P wrote: ↑
27 Dec 2018, 10:45
Amber wrote: ↑
25 Dec 2018, 16:54
I remember the first IGO interview I was not successful at. It was for their YPP programme and that year was my last eligible year (age wise). Actually, I initially made it to the top 5 slots of those they wanted, but the issue of quota came in (in the 5 slots were 2 people from the same country, I and another candidate). Unfortunately, I was not favoured and I was the one dropped. I cried so hard for a week. Could not really get over it for a long time. But, looking back now, I see the positive side of it. I would not have been able to juggle everything I had at the time which would have seen me travelling frequently between 3 continents. My second failed interview for another IGO I did not feel as bad as the first, I was sad for a few days but motivated myself to send in even more applications (this time I overhauled my CV, improved my interview skills-learning how to do a competency-based interview, followed a few groups of like-mind job seekers at IGOs etc.). I have gotten to two interviews since then for IGOs and I got one of them and haven't heard back from the other.
It will be tough at first, but it can be a learning moment too. These days I no longer get as affected and simply just send more applications :D 😁
Oh wow! More or less similar experience especially with the roller coaster of emotions from failing the 1st interview, and using that experience as a motivator. Personally, I'm glad that I won't have to apply for anything until after 1 year has passed :lol: Haha I even unsubscribed to many of my UN/IGO job alerts. It's so crazy now looking back at how much of a routine I had made of it but in a way, having it as a routine allowed me some sort of emotional detachment to the process. A rejection always sucks no matter what but it's a big problem when you let it affect you so personally.
Thanks for the kind words. Sending in applications are more a less a routine for me now and I am never particularly attached to any application anymore. Experience has taught me that. It does help with staying sane.

H.O.P
Posts: 101
Joined: 21 Sep 2018, 11:51
Has thanked: 39 times
Been thanked: 30 times

Re: How do you get over a failed interview?

Post by H.O.P » 29 Dec 2018, 15:14

mdr wrote: ↑
29 Dec 2018, 14:26
Amber wrote: ↑
25 Dec 2018, 16:54
I was just wondering if anyone had made it to the last round of interviews and ended up NOT being selected.

How does one get over this?
I've only had 3 interviews and made it on my 3rd but that was all out of over 300 applications in 3 years :lol: In other words, over 300 rejections :lol: I am aware it may be a different experience for someone who has been able to make it to most of their interviews from their applications but has not been able to get in yet like my friend who keeps getting to the interview stage. I understand her frustration is much different than mine as it feels like she's always so close to getting it. In my case, the interviews were a rarity in itself but after the 40th rejection, I just felt a little numb to it and it didn't really bother me because a) I knew it was going to be hard (although maybe not this hard..) and b) I didn't see the point of stopping when I wasn't even there yet, y'know? Also, personally, I've had a lot of experience with failure so a rejection (even hundreds of them) is not something I allow to get in the way of my goals. I honestly was going to keep at it until I get in. Got the 1st interview and it was a roller coaster of emotions and stress as it was the 1st time I had gotten that far. I think I let my nerves get the better of me and it definitely wasn't easy thinking that I was this close to getting the job and it was utter torture having to wait and worry about the results. At that time, I had the 2nd interview (for a different job) lined up almost immediately which I did a little better but I learned the hard way just how long and tedious the UN recruitment process was- it took forever for them to inform me of my rejection and there were a few opportunities I didn't take because I thought I was almost there so pro tip no.1- don't hold your breath. Not even after you received your offer as anything can happen (not until you signed the contract at least or relocated). That's why I wish I had come across Sebastian's site sooner or had someone told me that the process was insanely long.

In my 3rd interview, I was much better prepared and felt confident in the first part but I genuinely thought I screwed up on the 2nd. I was so depressed for a couple of days- it was so hard not to repeat the disaster that was my 2nd interview and be haunted by it but you know what, I was so indignant that immediately after, I applied for 2 new jobs and continued for the next few days because mind you, I was pretty much applying almost every week for 3 years. Even now, I am still receiving rejection letters. So my take is if you really want 'the job', you're not gonna let one or a hundred rejections stop you. And certainly not from applying for other UN jobs. I have a friend who got in with only ONE application. And she even got in to my dream Duty Station. I was happy for her but imagine how bitter I felt inside because to me, I struggled so much more and for longer but my UN journey just happened to be tougher and if anything, it has nurtured my resilience especially to failures. When you fail enough times, you realize that it's best to move forward as quickly as possible- to spend more time and energy towards self-improvement rather than worrying on what could have been. I know it's difficult but don't let a rejection affect you so personally because once the interview is done, the reality is there isn't much else you can do about the outcome so it's better to take the best and most valuable parts of a failure and strive to be better for the next opportunity.
Oh wow! I do get the feeling of seeing your friends getting in with a lot more ease. I also have a friend, same field and we started out together, who is already about to be a P3 and I am still struggling :D. And other acquaintances who are already in professional positions within the UN System. It does happen. But, I am really happy for my friend's progress because I see a lot of hope for myself. We both used to talk about how to get in when we started out and always thought it to be a herculean task. I have just accepted that my journey may take longer.

petercowe
Posts: 1
Joined: 26 Oct 2018, 18:57
Been thanked: 2 times

Re: How do you get over a failed interview?

Post by petercowe » 29 Dec 2018, 21:53

I have had five UN jobs and sat both sides of the interview table or Skype calls the one thing that is a constant is how totally unfit for purpose the whole UN HR process is. It is corrupt and inept and a loathsome process which we all hate because all too often we don't get candidates of any calibre and the extraordinary length of time recruitment takes, this is not productive for anyone apart from keeping a lot of HR staff in jobs.
So if you do get an interview well done at the interview stage unless it is a done deal (and we all know it very often is) it can be a lottery. Often the panel does not want to be there or have no training in the interview process or little knowledge of the skill set required. I am amazed at how many interviewers did not read PHPs pre-interview you would think that's a pre-requisite? The competency-based questions are great if like me you have had a long career and have many examples of work situations you can pull on and adapt for any question. Even in that case, I have been interviewed by staff that clearly have no knowledge of their profession and have looked up what they think are some clever questions from some manual. I am also shocked at not being told of the result if you are not selected I think that is just professional courtesy, but it does not happen.
My point is that it is not a level playing field so don't feel bad about failing interviews. After a few years in the UN you begin to understand why staff hang onto jobs for eternity because so many have managed to cheat the system and could never get anything as good anywhere else. This is also down to exceptionally poor managers that have no training or management experience but just end up being supervisors by being in the same job for a long time so they can be fearful of strong candidates. Sorry if this sounds negative I just say it the way I see it, maybe that's why I looking for work again. Just keep banging out the job applications as others have said here you have to fire off a lot to get any response. On UN missions I have worked we estimated staff spend 20% of their working week looking for and applying for the next post. Until the UN and all UN agencies get rid of the current HR and hire independent HR companies that must pitch every three years to re-apply we will all still suffer the horror and dysfunction of UN HR.

User avatar
NevKen
Posts: 136
Joined: 04 Aug 2018, 13:48
Has thanked: 36 times
Been thanked: 54 times

Re: How do you get over a failed interview?

Post by NevKen » 29 Dec 2018, 23:21

petercowe wrote: ↑
29 Dec 2018, 21:53
Sorry if this sounds negative I just say it the way I see it, maybe that's why I looking for work again.
Nothing is negative for those who accept the facts...
petercowe wrote: ↑
29 Dec 2018, 21:53
Until the UN and all UN agencies get rid of the current HR and hire independent HR companies that must pitch every three years to re-apply we will all still suffer the horror and dysfunction of UN HR.
Restructuring system faults is past due at UN HR but giving control to private HR agencies will be the biggest disaster (they are only focus on tangible profits) in a result the UN will be paying more to outside HR agents while they squeeze the overall benefits for workers. Given that adding to your full statement, I can say if the UN HR control is changed that would be the end of UN system.

Post Reply