Dear J.T. & Dale: I recently had a phone interview with a company I really like. Although I did not get the job offer, the interview was positive. During the interview, the manager mentioned that she had recently transferred from a different department. I have applied for another job in the same company, one that happens to be in her old department. Would it be too forward to e-mail her and ask her to mention me to the hiring manager? – Mitch
J.T.: Absolutely, reach out to her. Just because you weren’t selected doesn’t mean she doesn’t see you as a good candidate. I’m sure she’d love to be able to help her old department by passing along someone she liked in a phone screen.
DALE: My personal experience in hiring is that of every 10 people I’ve interviewed, there are five or six I’d love to hire. That means that the decision comes down to choosing from among great candidates. With that in mind, let’s back up and address a broader issue: how to deal with not getting an offer.
Instead of skulking off, a loser, you’d be wise to assume that you were among those they would have liked to hire. Thus, if you don’t get a job offer, make an offer. Tell the hiring manager: “I enjoyed meeting you and would love to work together someday.
If for any reason the person you pick doesn’t work out, please think of me as your backup candidate.” One study puts the failure rate for new hires at nearly 50 percent, so being backup is not a bad place. Said another way, you didn’t get passed over, you made an important contact for your future.
© 2012 by King Features Syndicate, Inc.
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