It is a common practice for sports teams to watch film after a game to evaluate the performance of individuals and the team as a whole. Can you imagine if you could film your job interviews and then watch them with a coach who could break down your efforts and help you find your strengths and areas where you could improve? I doubt any employer would agree to you bringing a video camera into an interview and setting up shop, so what is one to do?
While you may not be able to watch film, it is important for individuals to take some time to evaluate their job hunting efforts. I remember working with a student some years back who had several first round interviews but was never invited to any second/final round interviews. He came into the Career Center and wanted to discuss his resume as he was frustrated about his lack of progress generating offers to second round interviews. During the meeting I asked him what he thought a resume could do for him in the job hunt – after discussion he answered the resume can generate an offer to interview for a position or with a company. He then realized that the resume had no bearing on his lack of 2nd round interviews and that something must be happening/not happening during the first round of interviews that prevented him from moving forward in the hiring process. The focus on the meeting quickly turned from looking over a resume to how to prepare and conduct himself during an interview.
Look back at where your individual job search stalls – is there a common stalling place? If so, what factors are integral for that step. Maybe no one will respond to your outreaches for networking meetings/conversations? Let’s look at your initial outreach to the individuals. Maybe the information interviews go poorly…let’s look at your preparation and what expectations were established for the meeting. Been on a good number of interviews but no offers? It may be time to evaluate your interviewing skills.
Sometimes an individual runs into a lull (you go 0-for-5 in your networking outreach in one week) or just misses on closing the deal (three final round interviews – zero offers). While these scenarios do occur, it is also a good practice to take time on a bi-weekly basis to evaluate your job search efforts. As Einstein is credited for saying “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” Take some time to evaluate your tactics so as to avoid repeating the same mistakes.