Rejected for Job? Ask Why, They Might Tell

Rejected for a marketing communications at Boundless Playgrounds in Connecticut, this woman asked why. The feedback got her back working -- in her own business.

Increasingly, the rejected are requesting honest input on why they were knocked out of the box. And Increasingly, hiring managers, feeling the pain of the unemployed, are providing the detailed candid information that can change the course of a job hunt or even a career. However, don't expect the powers-that-be to be dumb or even reckless and reveal that their screening policies break laws about discriminating against the aging, overweight, or pregnant.

Then head of Boundless Playgrounds, Amy Jaffe Barzach, gently but firmly informed the woman she was an entrepreneur not an organization person and belonged in Manhattan, not Connecticut. There's more. Barzach referred a client.

The trick in getting useful feedback is your approach. It has to balance a sincere desire for input with evidence of strength and optimism, not desperation. Managers have to be cautious about not tipping the rejected into despair or, worse, violence.

After you find out what you need to know, ask the manager how you can return the favor. Such encounters often lead to longer-term professional relationships.

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