3 tips to get useful post-job interview feedback

If you're a consultant, then it's a given that you're always on the lookout for your next gig. While there are plenty of online resources to help prepare you for the big interview, what often gets lost is what to do when you don't get hired. Obviously, nobody wants to be rejected, but there are often teachable moments that you can find and use during your next interview—if you know how to look for them.

To improve your chances of landing that dream gig, Amaxra offers these three tips our consultants have used in the past to get actionable feedback from the hiring manager after an interview:

  1. Ask verbally – When following up with a hiring manager, try to ask questions over the phone rather than in emails and text messages. After one week, call them to politely ask if a decision on the job you're interviewing for was made. Hiring managers—especially those at large, high-tech firms—are always busy and often don't mind when an assertive interviewee follows up with a quick call. However, most hiring managers at these same companies are not keen to answer the same query when sent via emails or text messages. A human voice always gets a better response than dry text on a screen.
  2. Don't challenge your interviewer's decisions – Asking for constructive post-interview feedback should always be a conversation rather than an interrogation. Exchanging a quick "hello" then immediately demanding "why wasn't I hired?" will make you appear pushy. Conversely, saccharine chit-chat before asking the hiring manager "so, what did I do wrong?" will put them in a position to give you either useless feedback ("oh, it's not you… you're great but just not great for this role at this time") or challenge you in return ("why did you think you did something wrong?"). Your interviewer will almost always respond positively to an opportunity to provide you clear, actionable feedback by asking "what is the one thing you feel I could do to improve my performance next time?"
  3. Never ask twice – Most hiring managers are nice people who don't mind playing the role of life coach for a few minutes over the phone. However, some either are too busy or just have bad days. So, even when you feel the responses from the hiring manager aren't helpful, don't keep pestering them for the answer you want to hear. Chances are you won't appear assertive or gutsy by asking the same question over and over. Take the hint, thank them for their time, and get ready for the next interview.

Moving on and charging ahead is the best thing you can do after an interview doesn't result in hiring. Learning from your experiences and objective feedback are the best ways to do that.

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