“Challenge Consulting have added considerable value to Energetics for our long term needs”

Matt Wilkin – Energetics
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For more information:
Stephen Crowe

Managing Director

Ph: 02 8042 8907

[email protected]

Assessment

We all like to think that we are open-minded, objective and non-discriminatory. However, the truth is that every day we are fighting our natural tendencies to be just the opposite. Unconscious bias underlines so many of our decisions and nowhere is this more prevalent than within the context of recruitment. Research has shown us time and time again that diversity is good for business , with diverse organisations consistently outperforming their competitors. But how do we create diverse organisatons when our natural tendency is to maintain the status quo and base our hiring decisions on deep seated prejudices and stereotypes?

What is Unconscious Bias?

The first step to tackling unconscious bias is understanding it and its various guises. Essentially unconscious bias occurs when our brains make sweeping judgements or assessments about a person or situation without us realising. These judgments are heavily influenced by our background, experiences, culture and education. In an effort to raise self-awareness, we have outlined some of the most common forms of unconscious bias below.

Key Forms

 

Conformity Bias –This is the view that as individuals we have a tendency to be influenced by the values or behaviours of others rather than exercising our own independent judgement.  For instance, we may be swayed by the strong opinions of more dominant characters on a hiring panel and fail to voice our true thoughts and opinions on a candidate. In these instances, good candidates may be overlooked if for instance one interviewer takes a dislike to a candidate.

Affinity Bias – Arguably one of the most common forms of bias within recruitment, affinity bias essentially stems from our comfort with the familiar. Research suggests that we have a natural tendency to favour those that we share some commonality with. Perhaps we attended the same university or we share a common hobby or personality trait. We are naturally drawn to what we know and by implication can end up in a position where we are hiring candidates in our own image something which has a huge impact for organisations seeking to establish a diverse workforce.

Beauty Bias – Whilst the majority of us would deny that we makes judgements on a person’s looks, research would suggest that we are pre-disposed to unconsciously favour candidates we find aesthetically pleasing. Whilst this can be based purely on our perceptions of attractiveness, more often it stems from our unconscious need to select a candidate who meets our pre-conceived idea of what someone in a particular role ought to look like. Research has identified that we naturally favour height in applicants for leadership roles. We may consider a beautiful woman to be a bad fit for a truck driving job but a good fit for a front of house position.

Halo Bias – Coined originally by the psychologist Edward Thorndike in the 1920’s, the Halo effect was initially used to describe the outcome of a social experiment whereby commanding army officers were asked to rate junior soldiers in terms of their intelligence, leadership, character and physique. Thorndike observed that in instances where one positive dominant characteristic was identified that this tended to shape the commanding officer’s views of the individual as a whole. The implications of this phenomenon for recruitment are significant. Upon reviewing a CV or interviewing a candidate for the first time, a potential employer may quickly hone in on one particular positive attribute, experience or skill and unconsciously make sweeping conclusions about that candidate’s ability or character. It seems that first impressions really do count and can work to our advantage where we make a good first impression.

Horns Bias – The Horns effect is essentially the opposite of the Halo effect whereby we unconsciously let negative first impressions cloud our overall view of a person. For instance, where a candidate is late for an interview this may be viewed negatively by an employer who may make a snap decision that the candidate is arrogant and has poor time management. Once this negative impression is created it is very difficult to reverse this mindset even where a candidate performs excellently at interview and displays other admirable qualities.

Contrast Bias – This form of unconscious bias is extremely common within a recruitment context. For instance, where an employer is reviewing a large number of CV’s, they are more likely to compare a candidate’s CV with one they looked at just before rather than reviewing it in isolation and on its merits. The same can be said in an interview context, where an employer is likely to directly compare a candidate they are interviewing with a candidate they interviewed just before. In these instances, quality candidates may be unfairly overlooked by employers who compare them to a previous candidate instead of judging them against the requirements specified within the job description.

Confirmation Bias – This form of bias involves favouring information that affirms our existing judgements and beliefs and overlooks information which would serve to contradict these. For example, where an interview panel are interviewing a candidate who has been recommended by a senior person within the business, they may already hold this candidate in high regard and unconsciously seek out information to support this preconception. At the same time, they may ignore any unfavourable qualities if this information does not uphold their existing pre-conceived notions.

Attribution Bias – Attribution is essentially the way in which we rationalise the causes of events or behaviours. We make self-serving internal attributions when we attribute excellent test results on our hard work and abilities, however where we have performed badly, we are more likely to blame this on outside factors such as the test having not been explained to us properly. When it comes to our judgements of others, this notion is flipped on its head. Research would suggest our tendencies are the reverse when judging others. For instance, in an interview we may attribute an individual’s successes to be the result of nepotism or luck and their failures to be the result of a poor work ethic or incompetence.

Now that you have an understanding of the various forms of unconscious bias we would suggest you read our curated article “7 Practical Ways to Reduce Bias in your Hiring Process”. This article offers practical guidance on mitigating unconscious bias within the recruitment process and may help you avoid the pitfalls commonly associated with this issue.

Assessment

I asked a millennial a straightforward question: ‘Have you ever had a performance review?’ ‘Yes, and it sucked’, he replied.

He’s a motivated, engaged worker who routinely exceeds his monthly targets, so I’m sure it wasn’t his rating he was unhappy with; it was the process. We know it needs to change; after all, the workplace has changed profoundly in the last decade. We make decisions more collaboratively, we work in global teams, our work is more data-driven and information overload is a constant stressor.

This young person described his ideal alternative to a performance review to me and it boiled down to three things:

  • Coaching and mentoring to help him reach his own goals
  • A clear understanding of the organisation’s goals and how he is expected to meet them
  • A fair and balanced assessment of how he is doing, from a range of perspectives

And while these are all really important to him, he doesn’t want them to be onerous or too time-consuming; not for him, his manger or the people in HR.

I participated in a webinar hosted by Halogen Software, in which presenters Evelyn Watts and Hawley Kane outlined five alternatives to the annual review. I’m sure my millennial mate, as well as any of the other three or four generations in the workplace, will find an alternative that suits their workplace and their people.

It’s important. Watts and Kane reported that when organisations began to focus on coaching and feedback in their ongoing performance management they reported:

  • increased revenue (70% of companies)
  • decrease in staff turnover (72% of companies)
  • improved customer satisfaction (54% of companies).

So here are the five alternatives that Watts and Kane of Halogen Software suggest.

  1. Quarterly goal setting

Frequent revision and updating of goals leads to better business outcomes. It’s common for executive teams to review their goals as often as five times a year; employees are unlikely to do the same.

Step one is to align individual goals with strategic goals; and step two is to set concrete goals with a target and a measurement. It is then critical to keep on track and stay engaged, which is accomplished by regular and specific feedback and discussion. As Halogen is a software company, it has clever computer-based ways to manage these processes and keep them front of mind.

  1. Development discussions

In the contemporary workplace, especially for millennials, the reality is that 18 to 24 months in a job is normal. In this time, employer and employee want to get the most from each other. Holding development discussions that challenge everybody is the manager’s challenge. The process should be honest and open, with the manager acting as coach, not boss.

It is still important that the process be formal and that a solid development plan results from it. Halogen’s career development plan asks, ‘Where do you want to be in two years?’ The manager is then challenged to identify appropriate development plans to help the team member reach their career goals. They must keep the conversation going, periodically asking, ‘how are we doing?’ and at the end of the year asking, ‘did we get there?’ before creating the next plan.

  1. 360 degree feedback assessments

One of the things my millennial mentioned in describing how his reviews sucked was that although his manager felt she had the full picture of his achievements, he didn’t believe that she did, as he did some of his best work on a project in another team, some of whom were in another city. Well-conducted 360 degree reviews overcome this as workers are far more accepting of performance feedback when it comes from multiple sources. Halogen reports more accurate, credible and reliable performance appraisal ratings, improved performance and higher functioning teams as well.

These are their guidelines

  • Have employees choose raters with manager approval
  • Feedback should be aggregated and anonymous
  • Rate on competencies
  • Provide training and follow up

Teaching people how to give and receive feedback is important for this approach to be successful, and feedback should flow up as well as down the company hierarchy.

  1. Project reviews

Reviewing the success of a project and the people working on it aligns better with the way many companies work now. This method is not limited to the employee-manger relationship and is flexible in that it can launch any time and team leaders can manage their own project teams and set project goals and measurements. Project reviews should incorporate continuous feedback to work most effectively, say Watts and Kane.

  1. Check-ins

Watts and Kane refer to frequent, regular one-on-one conversations as the ‘Holy Grail’ of performance management. They link coaching and feedback to goals, development, rewards and ultimately career progression. Because they are so important, we will look at these in detail in our next post about performance reviews.

Progress, not perfection

In the webinar’s question time a participant said that they presently had no performance reviews, and asked how to get started.  Training people to understand the benefits, linking goals (the what) and competencies (the how) and changing the mindset of managers all formed part of the answer, but what really resonated was Watts and Kane’s assertion that you can start tomorrow with these five methods.

We know the performance review has to change, and we can take small steps, aiming for progress rather than perfection. Work is changing so fast that we can’t afford not to – improving conventional approaches is not going to cut it and the annual review is becoming less effective at driving performance every year.

Assessment

Performance reviews are an opportunity to get some feedback on your work over the past year, but they’re also your chance to have your say on how you think you could become a better professional. Here are eight ways to do so:

  1. What you like about your job

Tell your boss what you like about your job. It helps them to understand who you are and how to keep you motivated and happy. Happy employees are more productive and contribute to a healthy workplace culture.

  1. What you want to learn about

Let your boss know what you’re interested in learning about. It helps them to plan where you might fit in a growing company. Employees who are continually learning continually increase their value in a business.

  1. What you would really like to work on

If there is an upcoming project that you want to be a part of, tell your boss about it. It shows your interest in what is happening in the business. Employees who work on projects that they are interested in are more passionate about their work.

  1. Where you see yourself in the future

Tell your boss where you see yourself in the future with the company. It shows that you are goal orientated and are keen to be a part of the business in the long term. Employees with a vision for the future are motivated towards achieving their goals.

  1. How you would like to contribute to the company’s success

Let your boss know what you would like to do to contribute to the company’s success. It shows that you are a team player and that you’re dedicated to common goals. Employees who want to contribute have a high morale.

  1. What support you need to do your best work

Tell your boss what support you need to do your job well – be it training, new technology, better communication, an extra pair of hands or anything else. If you don’t tell them, they may not think to offer support. Employees who speak up about what they need are more likely to get help.

  1. What isn’t working

Be honest about what isn’t working – be it a process, procedure or a type of technology. Managers who aren’t working with the systems may not be aware of inefficiencies and appreciate insights from the ‘trenches’. Employees who give feedback can help to streamline business processes.

  1. What ideas you have for improving practices

Suggest solutions for what is not working. It shows that you’re creative and insightful. Employees with ideas for improving practices show their leadership potential.

Assessment

Leadership takes on many responsibilities; it can be very busy and even tiring at times and therefore motivation levels can fluctuate. However, in this role you need to be able to keep yourself motivated because in turn it keeps the rest of your team motivated and thriving in the business.

It starts with keeping in check your own personal motivation – your passions, continuing to challenge yourself with various projects and remembering why you committed to these goals in the first place. What you are trying to achieve?

Sometimes the quickest way to lose motivation or even exhaust your level of motivation is to spend all of your time and energy trying to motivate and please the needs of your team. The truth is motivation is personal and you cannot force it upon others. Instead, leading by example through your own motivations, you can inspire others to motivate themselves and drive them to perform better. It’s showing the way towards success.

Methods for self-motivation can include:

• Learning new skills – What is needed for your current role? Where can you obtain these skills? Is there anyone who you can consult with for direction or advice?

• Taking appropriate leave breaks to relax & rejuvenate – Clearing your mind of distractions (and resting), taking the time to find out more about yourself or pursuing a personal goal or hobby.

• Spending time developing a self-improvement plan and setting goals – Where do you see your role developing in line with your business goals? Where do you see your team going and what do you need to do to help guide them there?

• Investing in courses and training that can lead to growth and development – Are there any conferences within your local area that are providing information on areas of development? Have you looked into local educational institutions and what courses they provide? Are there any online resources that you could review outside of business hours?

Building your own motivation by developing our skills and abilities also provides the knowledge and insight to pass on to others. If others within your team are seeking your advice or direction, you can provide recommendations and information on what you have looked into previously, helping direct others toward their future success.

Make sure to also keep following up on your personal progress and what motivates you, whether it is every month or six months. That way you can help keep your motivation levels consistent and on track.

If you are currently in a leadership role, what motivates you? More importantly, in what ways do you keep your drive and motivation consistent?

Assessment

When you look up the term ‘leadership’ or ‘leadership roles’, you will find many articles on what to do to become a great leader. It is also important to be aware of bad habits that can hinder progress.

I know I have been guilty of at least two of the items listed below, but the first step is being aware of these habits so that you can find the ways to improve your leadership performance:

  1. Taking credit for others’ ideas and contributions – We all know the famous term, there is no ‘I’ in ‘Team’. It is very exciting when members of your team make a contribution that takes the organisation in a positive direction. However, the biggest failures one can make as a leader is to neglect to recognise and acknowledge individual and team contributions. If you are taking credit for someone else’s work, chances are you will start to notice your team working against you and not for you because they do not feel appreciated or valued.
  2. Using a position of power to control and intimidateothers — This autocratic style of leadership will often leave the team with a low level of autonomy. This can prevent creative ideas being presented as team members feel they do not have the right to contribute.
  3. Blaming others when things go wrong – It is important to recognise with the team when mistakes are made and that they have negative consequences in order to assess better solutions for the future. However, singling people out, pointing fingers, or making others carry the full weight of the failure is not reaction a leader should take. A leader needs to stand by their team no matter what, accept responsibility of when things go wrong, keep track of team members and progression, and have an ‘open door’ for team members to approach if they are experiencing struggles on tasks.
  4. Clinging to traditional methods and old ideas –In order to thrive in society most leaders need to think outside the box, take risks when needed and use innovation to be one step ahead of competitors. While traditional methods may have worked in the past, if you find you are constantly using the same strategy when the rest of the world is changing, you may fall behind. This includes those that refuse to learn new skills and tools to keep up with today’s market. If you are not trying to learn and adapt, you will fall behind.
  5. Failing to keep promises – Leaders who make promises but do not follow through risk loss of personal credibility, trust and the goodwill of others. If you have let down your team more than once, it can often take a long time to earn that trust back.
  6. Actingalone – Leaders who do not consult, collaborate or solicit input from others often fail to make enlightened decisions. Leaders also need to make sure they delegate tasks within the team appropriately so that they can stretch their teams’ abilities.

Failing to effectively manage issues – Leaders who dismiss the need to address, manage and resolve issues, place themselves and their organisation at risk.

What are some of the experiences you have learned in a leadership role? What were the learning curves that you have experienced?

Assessment

Leading teams requires great commitment and looking outside of yourself to meet their needs. We have provided some tips below to help set you on the right path to a great leadership experience: If you are new to a leadership role they might help guide your way and if you have been at it for a while they may serve as a useful reminder.

1. Brush up on Your Communication Skills. Having clear and precise communication is important, and being honest and open with your team helps build a level of trust. Making sure all staff understand what the goals and expectations are and giving them the opportunity to contribute their thoughts and ideas for feedback is important.

2. Be Committed to Your Goal. Not only should you be explaining the importance of the company goals to your team, but you need to show by example that you support the goals as a leader. This involves setting out the tasks, having follow-up meetings and making sure that your team is on track with what needs to be achieved.

3. Give Verbal Recognition. Verbal recognition for efforts and praise show your support towards the staff member’s accomplishments. It also boosts morale and positivity that encourages a mutual support among team members.

4. A Team Leader Should Lead by Example. A great leader is someone who shouldn’t be afraid to get their hands dirty or dig in to help when the team requires additional support. Someone who can encourage team members to take risks and support them when they do.

5. Invest in Staff Careers. To ensure your staff are up to date with the skills they need for their role, you may need to invest in training, invest time mentoring or finding the right mentor, invest time to discover what they really need and want in order to do a great job.

6. Resolve Conflicts. Any conflict within the workplace needs to be handled promptly and assessed by leaders as soon as it arises. Appropriate measures need to be taken to find resolution or negotiate a mutual agreement. Whether it is conflict in a task or between co-workers, leaders must step up to the plate to take action and problem solve the best way that they can.

7. Teach Adaptability. The effective team manager should teach adaptability and flexibility to all their team members. This results in better communication, a greater sense of empowerment among staff and a faster exchange of information.

8. Build Pride in Your Team. Positive reinforcement on success is a proven way to keep staff motivation high and build pride in your team. It will increase productivity amongst the team and encourage drive towards goals. You are also creating a positive working environment that employees are happy to be a part of.

9. Give Your Staff New Responsibilities. Just as you have developed into your role of leadership, your team are looking for development opportunities. It is important that you help them by giving them the opportunity to take on new responsibilities as the opportunities arise.

Have you lead teams during your career? What were your first experiences when it came to leading teams? What did you find was most successful? What did you learn from the experience?

Assessment

You have worked hard to get your promotion, now you have to set yourself up for success in your new role. Preparing to take on more responsibility will make the transition process run smoothly and will help set you up for future success.

So what are the next steps after you receive the promotion? What can you do to keep yourself on track?

1. Get clear expectations. The first thing you need to do is really understand your new role. What does the organisation expect of you? What does your manager expect of you? And what do you expect of yourself? Clarifying these expectations sets up a path to follow.

2. Set your goals What do you want to accomplish and why? Set personal and career goals both short and long term so you can measure your progress on the path. Don’t be afraid to share your goals or vision with management and get their buy in as well,

3. Talk to your boss. Get to know your manager and determine how you will work together. How and when will you communicate and what will help you succeed beyond the job description. These things are critically important to your mutual success.

4. Focus on building relationships. You may have moved to a new department with new peers or report to and a new manager. The relationships with the people around you are part of that job! Invest time in building relationships with your new peers, people in other groups, your boss, your customers, and if you are a leader, your team. It makes your working environment more positive and productive if you have a level of rapport with your team.

5. Learn what you need to learn. Remember you are new to this position so you cannot know it all on the first day! It is part of our development to learn new skills. Take notes, ask questions, request feedback to make sure you are heading on the path towards success. The earlier you set yourself up to understand the requirements and expectations of the role, the easier it will be to settle into the position and start delivering.

6. Celebrate! Of course you deserve the time to celebrate your promotion and share the excitement with others. Take some time for yourself and those closest to you to celebrate your progress and accomplishments. Celebrating builds your confidence and awareness, and it sets you on the right path for even better performance.

Sometimes we tend to rush from one project to the next without fully understanding what we have achieved. Every accomplishment is a stepping stone on the path towards your future. Show appreciation towards those who helped get you get to that next stage.

If you have been through a promotion recently, what steps did you take to continue to perform at your best and show that you were the right one for the job?

Assessment

Performance reviews can seem intimidating and can make you feel anxious, but at the end of the day they are important in helping us develop and improve our performance. Whether you have been in an organisation for a few months or a few years, the performance review is inevitable. With correct preparation though, they don’t have to be scary.

  1. Be Prepared

There is no harm in asking your manager ahead of time what to expect from the upcoming review. You can also ask fellow colleagues who have been at the organisation longer what they have experienced. Make sure that you are recording your work progress and achievements so that you also have something to present to management during the review process.

  1. Be Honest

This is an opportunity for you to share with your manager your honest thoughts and opinions on your current workload and working environment. This means acknowledging if you are struggling in some areas and working with management on ways to resolve or delegate certain tasks. This is also an opportunity to shine and really show your manager where you are excelling (as long as you can back it up with examples).

  1. You are Part of a Team

Remember that your performance review should not be just an opportunity for your manager to point out all of your failures. You should both be discussing how you are performing as an individual and a team member for the overall success of the company. If you have ideas or feedback to put forward on possible improvements or incentives for the team, now would be the time to do so.

  1. Know Your Accomplishments

Don’t sell yourself short. A manager may not always be present during the time of an accomplishment and may ask you what you have contributed to the company so far. Don’t let it fall under the radar, even get a colleague or witness to verify it if it was a team effort or if it helped another person significantly. If you are a facts and figures type of person, present it to management with the data necessary to support your review.

  1. Be Open to Constructive Criticism

These periodic assessments are provided to everyone in your team to help you improve. It is important to not take constructive feedback as though it is a personal attack or react in a defensive manner. Take the time to listen carefully to the feedback your manager has provided, and once you know they have stated all of the details, take the time to ask any questions about anything you may be unsure about. You can also ask what steps you can start taking to improve this area of feedback.

  1. Give Feedback

There should be a point in the review session where you’re asked if you want to give feedback on your colleagues, your boss, or the projects you’ve worked on. Be honest, but professional with your feedback, especially about co-workers or the way a certain project has been organised. Don’t leave anything out, but at the same time provide value by offering suggestions for improvement instead of just complaining.

  1. Ask Questions

Show that you were attentive and have initiative by asking questions at the end of the review on the next steps and areas of improvement. Be open to answer any questions provided by the reviewer as well. It’s a lot better to reflect on questions while the conversation is still fresh and even take notes on responses to reflect upon afterwards.

If you’re honest and assertive in your performance review and know what to expect, you’ll leave your review with more positive motivation than ever.

Assessment

What do you tell an employer when they ask you what your strengths are? Do you provide them with leadership examples from previous roles, outline key skills or educational achievements that could be valuable for the role? Do you know what skills the employer is looking for to fulfill the role?

A recent study by LinkedIn reveals that when it comes to interviewing and hiring early-career professionals, employers aren’t just considering education, experience and job skills. They are also looking for specific soft skills and personality traits — and how these characteristics rank may surprise you.

LinkedIn defines early-career professionals as those with zero to three years’ experience. Understanding these skill sets will give you a better indication of how you can be considered in today’s job market.

Specific skills
The two most important skills employers look for are problem-solving skills (65 percent) — defined as the ability to see and create solutions when faced with challenges — and being a good learner (64 percent) by learning new concepts quickly and being adaptable in new situations.

Employers also look for candidates who have strong analytical skills: 46 percent of the employers surveyed said early-career hires need to be able to use logical reasoning.

Communication skills are essential. The ability to clearly communicate ideas while speaking plays a much more important role than doing so in writing, however. The study revealed that 45 percent of employers want to hire people with strong oral communication skills, whereas only 22 percent consider strong written communication skills to be crucial.

Furthermore, creativity, the ability to think outside the box (21 percent), and being tech-savvy (16 percent) are also pluses for employers.

Personality traits
The most important personality trait employers look for in early-career professionals is the ability to collaborate. Fifty-five percent of employers put a premium on the ability to work well with others. A close runner-up was the ability to work hard, with 52 percent of employers preferring candidates who have strong work ethics and go above and beyond.

Having a positive attitude also goes a long way for 45 percent of employers, while 31 percent said being passionate by demonstrating enthusiasm for their work and the business’s values is also important.

Additionally, employers look for candidates who are organised (twenty nine percent) and resilient (twenty one percent).

Role-based skills
The types of skills employers are looking for also depends highly on the position and industry they work in. LinkedIn’s study found that hiring managers look for these specific skill sets when interviewing and hiring for sales, marketing and consulting roles:

For sales roles: Candidates should possess strong oral communication skills and a good attitude that shows optimism and maintains positive energy.
For marketing/PR roles: Creativity, passion and strong written communication skills are key to a great hire.
For consulting roles: Employers look for candidates with strong analytical and written communication skills.

Hiring managers, do you agree with the above statistics? What other skills sets are important to you when it comes to the ideal employee for your office team?

Assessment

You were picked out of the crowd of candidates to attend the interview. You meet the recruiter and start to feel like you are building a strong connection. You leave feeling confident and on a buzz. Then you wait with anticipation for the follow up call. When the recruiter gets in touch they tell you that unfortunately you were not successful, and will not be proceeding further.

At this point you will probably be experiencing feelings of confusion, disappointment and even anger. Do not react in a way you will regret. Instead think about the importance of maintaining relationships in your potential employment network. Remember that industry networks are all connected in different ways. So if one door closes, it doesn’t mean that another one isn’t waiting to be opened.

Before throwing in the towel and accepting defeat, you can run through the following steps to help lead you on a better the path towards success:

• Thank the recruiter/employer for their time – After all it isn’t easy for the person conducting the interview to deliver bad news to a potential candidate. To react badly only shows that you are emotionally reactive and respond to feedback negatively. It could also put you on the back bench for future roles if you behave in a manner that is rude or sarcastic.

• Don’t be afraid to ask for specific feedback – The best way to make improvements is to gain feedback to learn for future opportunities. Advice on how you performed during the interview (body language, eye contact etc.) or how you answered interview questions can be really useful for upcoming interviews. If the feedback relates to experience or skill sets, you may even want to consider educational courses or work experience that may help further develop those areas.

• Let the recruiter know that you would like to be considered for other suitable roles that become available. This keeps communication open and allows you to keep connected to potential employers.

• Don’t hesitate to get out there and start applying again right away – You probably don’t feel like applying for more jobs when that feeling of rejection hits you, but that doesn’t mean that there is nothing out there for you. It is important to stay focused on the goal of finding the job that’s right for you and not give up. Reach out to people within your network to let them know that you are searching for new opportunities. Register with a recruiting company that works in your chosen field. You can also seek out networking opportunities to start building more connections.

• Keep practicing your interview skills – This may sound like common sense, but the more practice you get the more confidence you will have when you interview. Practice for different interview methods e.g. one on one, panel or video interviews. Ask connections who are responsible for hiring people what they look for in the ideal candidate and practice their useful tips.

Remember that the application process is competitive and that we can’t win them all. That doesn’t mean however that we can’t take further measures and practice further steps to help us land our next great role.

What was the best feedback you ever received after an interview?