Hi Dean Jarley,
Hope this email finds you well. I have seen some of your recent posts highlighting failures as a growth tool and thought you may find value in sharing my story with graduating job-hunters.
As this year’s seniors graduate, they will come to know a couple of their friends that are drowning in job offers. I was not one of those people. By all means I had the resources to do it; I was a member of UCF’s Professional Selling Program (PSP) which is highly recruited by some very successful companies. Unfortunately, I lacked the proper interviewing skills that were needed to close the deal. So I interviewed and failed, failed, and failed again. Some of the companies that I had interviews for (but no job offers) included:
Aerotek, blown out in first interview
Gartner, final round (5 of my peers got this job, pretty sure I was the only one that interviewed that didn’t get it).
Pepsi, final round
Cintas, 2nd round
Tom James 3rd round
Google SMB adword sales, final round.
It’s hard to put into words how bad it hurt to not get that first Google offer. I had my mind set on Google ever since I joined PSP (they are one of our top sponsors) and always thought I would be a good culture fit for them. Problem was I had a track record of getting far in the interview process but never actually received an offer. I had one more shot to interview at Google for another position (which happened to be my dream job) but had little to lean on in terms of results. The day I graduated from UCF I had zero job offers while many of my friends were beginning their new chapters in less than a month. It was sobering to say the least.
It was right around graduation that everything started clicking for me. I began to understand the true meaning behind interviewer questions and how to side-step questions I wasn’t ready to answer (i.e. is our company your top choice?). I only learned these skills and tactics through 20+ failed interviews I had had throughout senior year.
To make a long story short, I eventually got my Google job offer (and a couple others) after graduation. Today I sell Google cloud solutions to the largest companies and government entities in the United States, an unparalleled opportunity for a new grad out of a state school in Florida. My closing advice would be to find a mentor, have a plan of what you want, and interview until you are blue in the face (preferably with your dream position as one of your last interviews). While I didn’t know it at the time, every failure I had was actually a step closer to making my greatest professional dream a reality.
Best of luck to all the job hunters, may YOU make the odds forever in your favor :).