Monthly Archives: June 2015

“You’re Not What We’re Looking For”

by K. G. Mitchell, KellyMitchell

Rats, rejected again. So now what do you do? Looking for work takes its toll, especially if you really invest yourself in the process. It can be mentally draining attempting to show the world a positive face, a smile and exude confidence at a time when you feel vulnerable, stressed and anxious.

If you think about the title, “You’re not what we’re looking for,” there could be some valuable clues in those six words that you’d be smart to think about and then do something about. The most obvious question to ask of the person making that statement is, “Why am I not what you are looking for?” In other words, what are they looking for that you lack.

You see it could be that if you hear this once, you were a wrong fit at that company. It’s not your fault, nor is it theirs. In fact, finding fault at all is the wrong thing to do. You may have all the qualifications on paper, but during an interview, the interviewer(s) made a decision that based on your personality for example and how you conducted yourself that someone else with equal qualifications would just fit in better. That’s fair I believe.

After all, the company and the person representing it know the culture and the kind of people who thrive and those that don’t or might put that culture at risk. You and I, we don’t know that, and they might have done you a favour from being hired and then shortly fired when you didn’t fit in as well as another candidate would.

Let’s suppose now that you hear, “You’re not what we’re looking for” frequently. What message could really be behind those words? Hearing it often could well mean that you just don’t have what it takes to compete with other applicants period. Say you got a job 8 years ago through a family friend in an office setting. You were let go a year ago due to downsizing and you’ve been looking for work for over a year.

In a situation like this, you may not have the credentials required by a new employer, such as certificate in Office Administration. You may have a working understanding of the software that company used, but perhaps employer’s are looking for people who have experience using newer programs, and face it, there are many people over those years who have upgraded their formal education in school and are now graduating with training in the latest and best practices.

You see that job you held in a small firm of 10 people was good while it lasted, but it has left you unprepared to compete with other applicants with more recent education or experience with larger companies. If you were one of those applicants, you’d be arguing that you’re a better fit and you might be absolutely right.

Now the above is just a scenario that I’m presenting. It does illustrate however that the experience you may have is valid and good so far as it goes, but it falls short of the experience other applicants have which may mean they are consistently hired where you are not. Frustrating? Absolutely. Understandable however? Yes, completely.

If you can determine therefore why you are not the best fit and what they are looking for, then you are in a position to do something about it if you so choose. If the message is that you don’t have experience working in large organizations, maybe you should confine your job search to smaller companies where you’ll be a great fit based on your work history. A job in a larger firm where you have to interact with many people in different departments may be something you’d have to learn but why hire you when other applicants know it already?

Recently I read a reply from a reader pointing out that it is companies not job seekers that are to blame when things don’t work out. I read their post and sensed bitterness, anger, resentment and a lack of full understanding when they have been passed over for others. I don’t think job seekers are to, ‘blame’ for their unemployment any more than I think employers are to, ‘blame’ for making the decisions they do.

Just as a job applicant can turn down a job because they don’t like the money offered, the travel involved or the work location, a company can turn down any applicant. In both cases, from either way you look at it, one or the other could decide it’s a bad fit. In fact, an applicant could withdraw from the application process and the company decide to hire someone else at the same time.

My advice is to respectfully ask for some clarification of why you are not presently what they are looking for in order to better compete in the future. If you need more experience get it. If you need a specific kind of experience, seek it out volunteering or take some upgrading if that’s the suggestion.

You may not of course get the real feedback that you’d like. If your personality and attitude are a bad fit, they aren’t going to tell you that. Some outfits don’t give feedback at all if you don’t work out. Be as objective as you can, open to feedback as you can and then pause to consider any feedback you do get before responding.

K. G. Mitchell is a professional employment counselor who believes tremendously in the power of personal enthusiasm. KellyMitchell is a premier technology consulting company dedicated to matching the most qualified IT professionals with top organizations nationwide. Website:


10 Reasons to Say NO More Often

by Sig Nordal, Jr.           

Are you a people pleaser? Always saying yes when someone asks for a favour. You feel like you will die with guilt if you say NO. The very thought of even thinking of saying NO makes you ill and causes a great deal of anxiety. You think of a thousand different ways to say NO but in the end you don’t, and yes comes out of your mouth, again. It’s always been this way for you and you’re starting to get tired of it. You wish there was a way to end the madness and learn how to say NO, once and for all.

Let’s look at the reasons why we don’t like to say NO and then we’ll give you 10 reasons why you should. For many, saying NO means people will have these thoughts about us:

We don’t care

We are mean or rude

We have better things to do

We aren’t kind or loving

You already know you aren’t any of those things. You are a kind, loving and caring person. Keep reading and find out why you need to say No more often and how, when you do, others will see you as the beautiful person you really.

10 Reasons to Say NO More Often


Amen. When you start saying NO people will start having more respect for you and not take you for granted. The reason they take advantage of you now is because they know they can. Once you start saying no, they will eventually get it. You can’t and won’t be taken for granted anymore.

You have a life too!

You can’t always put your life on hold for other people. There are things you need to do for YOU. Your errands, your chores and your days are just as important as theirs. Do your thing first. If you don’t, you’ll kick yourself in the bum for it at the end of the day. Oh, you know you will.

Who needs more stress in their life?

As soon as you say yes to something you really don’t want to do, anxiety, anger and stress kicks in. Here we go again. Do you like that feeling of frustration? I didn’t think so. Try saying NO next time and notice how you feel. I guarantee it won’t be stress. There may be a tinge of guilt, but it will pass and you will feel free.

Make time to rest and relax.

If you always say yes, when are you ever going to have time to recharge your batteries and decompress? Your health is very important. Physical, mental and emotional health. You need to look after number 1. That’s you! People who care about you, will care about your health too.

You’re making room for more yesses.

Yes! Let’s go for ice cream. Yes! Would you like to go on a fun little day trip with me? Yes! Do you feel like going to the movies tonight? Yes! More NO’s to things you don’t want to do and more YESSES for things that are fun.

Say goodbye to the time vampires.

These are the people that take advantage of you and suck the life out of you by constantly needing your help. They continuously use you for gain because they are too afraid to do things themselves. Get rid of them. They will have to grow up one day.

Teach someone a valuable lesson.

If you are always helping Sally out of a jam, she will never learn how to deal with difficulties and situations as they arise. When you allow her to figure it out on her own, she will grow, learn and be stronger. Say NO and kindly direct her to a resource that she can use to help herself.

More time for family and friends.

The more time you spend catering to others, even when you don’t feel like it, the more time you lose away from the ones that you care most about; your family and friends. They will be there no matter what, but think of the things you might be missing out on because you couldn’t say NO to Mrs. Jones, again.

Open the door for others to say yes.

When we start saying NO to people, they will have to look to others for help. The ones that haven’t said yes will have to step up to the plate. Let them start helping too so they can feel some sort of satisfaction.

Being assertive is a great trait to have.

When we learn how to assert ourselves properly, our self-confidence grows which, in turn, attracts more like-minded people. Assertively saying NO makes us feel like we have control of our lives again. That’s a good thing. Careful not to mistake it for aggressiveness.

Do you have a hard time saying NO? How does it make you feel when you do? Share your thoughts at the link below. 

Sig Nordal, Jr., has been working as an entrepreneur since completing his business studies at Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada. Sig has been involved in businesses and commerce in all corners of the world and he understands the risks, the excitements and the potential rewards associated with being an entrepreneur.