The Insider

The Insider's Guide To Job Search

  click to return to Index

Perseverance and Patience with the Hiring Process

by Kevin T Buckley, CPC

Beyond the techniques of job search, the organization of your resources and the diligence of your follow up, you will sometimes arrive at that stage of the hiring process which requires you to wait for further developments.

Executive schedules, vacations, re-assessment of job descriptions and the slow grinding of the corporate wheels of decision-making presents both a challenge and an opportunity.

It isn't easy to wait for feedback after interviews, wondering what they think of you, receiving silence when you expected information and acceptance and a clear sense of direction as to the next step.

That is the challenge. The opportunity also exists for you to gain strength of purpose and resiliency in the face of uncertainty.

As recruiters, we often see companies changing their hiring requirements, putting job searches on hold, making 180 degree turns and other potentially unsettling circumstances.

It can be very helpful to cultivate a sense of patience and perseverance with the process. There is an element required of trusting the flow of events and being willing to accept uncertainty that has the effect of reducing the tension of the situation.

Accepting the time required for events to unfold can make the difference between projecting calm confidence to the people involved in the hiring process and displaying an attitude of anxiety or impatience - both of which can materially influence the hiring manager's view of you and the final hiring decision.

Fear and doubt can suggest ways to try and exercise control over the process. Anxiety can build up the pressure to do whatever it takes to get a straight answer from someone who seems unwilling to provide clarity. This desire to over-control the situation can lead to well-intentioned but counter-productive actions.

Sometimes hiring managers will deliberately test a candidate's tolerance for uncertainty by being vague and non-committal, or delaying returning phone calls or emails to see how the candidate handles pressure and ambiguity. These may be important aspects of the job requirements. People handle pressure in different ways. This is an excellent time to see what a person's response under pressure is before a hiring decision has been sealed.

Some of the actions that make hiring managers pause and re-consider how suitable a candidate is are:

- Repeated messages left on voicemail
- Multiple emails sent asking for feedback and developments
- Sending emails that do not ask for information but offer
  non-essential details subsequent to a first meeting or contact,
  the goal being to keep oneself in the front of the recipient's mind

Tone and attitude are vital to get right with the hiring manager, his/her assistant, your human resources contact, the recruiter and anyone else involved. Don't let anxiety, impatience, annoyance or other negative attitudes creep into your conversations. Also, avoid being too helpful or accommodating to the point that you sound insincere just to move the process along. The middle ground is a friendly professionalism, sure of what you have to offer and able to offer flexibility if that is required to change meeting times or adjust to other unexpected developments.

Some Aspects Of The Hiring Process That Are Beyond Your Control:

- A hiring manager's superior has not signed on to the hiring decision
- The position is being revamped or otherwise modified in responsibility
- The salary range is still being debated internally, either within the
  hiring manager's department or in consultation with HR
- Other candidates have come up at the last minute or unexpectedly
- Another executive involved in the decision-making is away on business
  or on vacation
- The hiring manager has had other priorities intrude on the hiring process
- The hiring manager is testing how you handle yourself under pressure

Whether or not these changes in the hiring process are deliberate or circumstantial, by remaining calm and adjusting easily to the twists and turns of the hiring process you are making a favourable impression either consciously or subconsciously on the people that you are interacting with. Through your quiet confidence and trust in the process, you are showing the potential employer your character, maturity and integrity in situations that are to a large extent beyond your personal control.

This has the added benefit of increasing your sense of self-esteem and self-confidence as you prove to yourself your ability to live with delays, changes and lack of information without surrendering to doubt, fear and feeling like a victim.

If this opportunity is the right one for you then despite appearances, events, people and circumstances it will move in your direction. It might not be in the time-frame you had hoped for or expected. The most important idea to internalize is that in these situations that the best opportunities come to fruition through time and patience.

If this is the right option for you, events will point this out clearly if you have the patience and persevering attitude to not try to force a conclusion.

Bookmark and Share

Back toTop