It’s been a week. No calls, no texts, not even a quick, ‘I’m thinking of you message’. After a while, reality hits. You’ve been ghosted once again. Only this time, it’s not by your crush. It’s by a potential employer. This is the reality of what it’s like to be professionally ghosted.
From why it happens to what to do about it, we’ve covered everything you need to know about how to survive being professionally ghosted.
What is professional Ghosting?
Ghosting, or an unexplained silence, is something that lots of us have experienced in personal lives. The Tinder match that doesn’t reply to your message or the guy you were seeing who suddenly won’t pick up a phone: when someone stops replying to your messages for no reason at all, these are examples of being ghosted.
Professional ghosting is pretty similar, with one primary difference, the person ghosting you is a potential employer, not a crush. Seeing as technology is now the primary way we apply for jobs, professional ghosting is all too easy and now often job hunting is a case of, ‘if we call you’ve got the job if you hear nothing then you get the picture.’
Why does it happen?
There are so many reasons that employers professionally ghost but that doesn’t make it any easier to deal with or any more justified. The rationale is that no employers want to be thought of as the ‘bad guy’ and many find it easier to say nothing at all than type out a rejection email.
However, those of us familiar to job hunting know that no hope is better than false hope. There’s no doubting that employers are overwhelmed with job applications these days, surely it doesn’t take that long to send out a pre-written message to unsuccessful candidates, does it?
How to deal with being Professionally Ghosted
Being professionally ghosted can be one of the most frustrating things ever. You cant make anyone reply to an email and while it may be tempting to ring the company hundreds of times or continually send them different versions of the same email, none of this is going to get you any closer to a job offer.
Here are some more proactive ways to deal with being professionally ghosted.
1. Keep job hunting
The worst thing that you can do while waiting to hear back from an employer is to stop job hunting. Even if you think that you nailed the interview, not looking for other jobs puts too much pressure on the one you’ve applied for and can make you feel pretty low if you then don’t hear anything back.
Instead, treat job hunting a little like dating. It’s ok to keep your options open until you’ve got something guaranteed.
2. Don’t take it personally
It’s easy to take it personally when it seems like you’re getting rejected from every job you’ve applied for. It’s really important to remember that it isn’t a reflection on you. Employers are overwhelmed with applications for jobs and often receive hundreds of applications when they have just one job available. You might have the best grades, work experience or work ethic around but chances are you’re going to have to apply for a few jobs until you get anywhere.
3. Consider rewriting your CV
If you really haven’t heard back from any employers after looking for jobs for a month or so then it might be time to consider rewriting your CV. Have a search online for CV templates or even attend a CV writing session (these are often run at libraries or local colleges). General tips include keeping it clear and concise. Employers will often just glance it over initially so keep your font uniform, not too small and make your most relevant work experience and skills as close to the top as possible.
4. Follow up once
Like we said, you don’t want to harras employers. However, sometimes things to happen. Emails get lost in spam or a mix up happens in HR so it is worth sending a follow-up email or phone call to employers a week or so after having an interview. At the very least you find out you haven’t got the job and if they are still deciding then it shows that your keen.
5. Ask for feedback
For those employers that you do receive a rejection email from, it may be worth sending them a quick email asking for feedback as to why. It will probably just be due to a high volume of applicants but if it was something to do with your CV or a lack of experience in a certain area then its good to know so that you can improve on it.
Being professionally ghosting can make you feel pretty crappy and all too often it can actually be harder, and more stressful, than being ghosted by a guy. However try to keep your spirits high, like most things in life job offers come when you least expect them. Just keep motivated, keep putting yourself out there and keep aiming for the job of your dreams