View Full Version : Completely Blew An Interview - Peptalk Needed

4-23-11, 6:00pm
Hi All,

I got an interview at a really great school for a teaching job. I'd interviewed there last year, and though I didn't get hired, the department head told me I did a great job in the interview and that I should apply again this year. I managed to get in an application for this year's opening about a week before giving birth to my daughter and had the interview yesterday and I just bombed. For some reason, I couldn't find the words for anything I wanted to say, and I said a couple of things that I'm sure just sounded like total red flags to the committee.

Aargh - I'm so mad at myself. Anybody out there have any advice as to how to forgive yourself when you blow an opportunity like that? I keep replaying all my terrible answers in my mind.

Many thanks in advance,

4-23-11, 6:27pm
So sorry to hear this. I have had some bad ones myself. You are a good person even if you had one bad interview!! I have heard there is such a thing as baby brain - blame it on that!

Can you sub there so they see how fantastic you are in action?

4-23-11, 6:47pm
oh honey, these things happen. Just learn from it and let it go. I think you might have a bit much going on right now. Anytime I didn't get something I really wanted was just to prepare me for the next thing I WAS going to get which would be much better for it.

Is what you said really all that bad anyway? I blew an interview for a job as a teacher once and they gave me the job. I remember walking out of there saying, well that was a waste of everyone's time - and then they gave it to me.

Interviewing is a weird fake sort of thing. Just get better for the next one, but most of all LET IT GO.

4-23-11, 6:48pm
Don't be mad at yourself Ejchase. One thing I've learned (being born not the brightest) is there is no changing what happened and ultimately if the committee in charge of performing the interviewing process couldn't look past the fact you just had a baby and all, it's their loss. There will be more opportunities for you and chances are, you will be happier in a future accepted environment than you would have been in the one that turned you down. Seems like that's the way life has always worked for me. (Let down today, happy reward tomorrow). :) Sending a hug your way to help cheer you up and prepare you for better things to come! By the way, happy mommy-hood!

4-23-11, 9:49pm
Thanks, all. I just went for a walk with my baby and just tried to "be" with all my feelings of regret.

Your kind words help. Letting it go is just going to take a little while, but I will get there!

4-23-11, 10:19pm
In the past when I've looked for a job, the first interview would go badly. Then I'd find another company/job of interest, and that next one would go fine. So with me, the first interview after being out of practice would be a throw-away interview, and there was nothing I could do about it.

You may have some pattern like this, or no pattern whatsoever. It's annoying, what can you do? Something more interesting may turn up. The Universe is looking out for you. ;)

Here's an article on what not to say at interviews. If you didn't say any of these, you didn't do so badly:


What Not to Say at a Job Interview

This suit has been in my family for five generations.
You think this is disorganized. Wait till you see me on work projects.
I'd rather watch The Worst of C-Span than research your company.
You might want to have security frisk me before I leave.
I'll be a huge drain on company morale.

4-24-11, 1:16am
As painful as that was, to have such an interview experience is one of life's greatest gifts. Truly. Nothing really terrible happened, well, except for not getting that particular job, wonderful as it may have been. So, really, there is nothing to forgive yourself about. Besides, when it stops hurting so much , you will have the benefit of that wonderful learning opportunity. Honest. Now that I am retired, I volunteer at our library, helping people with all of the stuff of job hunting. What I tell them is that every interview is preparation for the next one. Life_is_Simple said much the same thing, and those examples of what not to say are spot on. Some of my clients have said even worse things during an interview. So, take heart and just trust the process.

4-24-11, 1:17am
Hmmm...is there some reason that I do not have paragraphs????

4-24-11, 5:30am
Having a bad interview can feel really devastating - I've had quite a lot of them myself, mainly due to not being able to manage my nerves! But do remember that sometimes it seems worse to you than it does to anyone else! I've also had interviews I've thought went badly and ended up getting the job. All you can do is learn from whatever mistakes you thought you made and use the experience to improve upon your subsequent interviews. We've all been there xx

4-24-11, 10:30am
Who knows about these things, really. I had 3 interviews last week and two went excellent and one went very good. And I still have no idea if I'll get a job out of them (1 said no already). Too much competition. It can come down to other things like experience or lack of, over how the interview went. I think I'd feel better not getting the jobs if I bombed the interviews. The alternative being that I was totally "on" and still didn't get hired - frustrating.

4-24-11, 11:42am
Echase - don't be too hard on yourself. The people who intereviewed you might look at you completely different than how you feel you presented yourself and want to hire you. I had the absolutely worlds worst interview on the planet (the final interview with the FBI after months of interviews, background checks, psych & fitness evaluations, etc). I was over an hour late (they actually called my Mom to find out where I was and I was in my 30's then - how embarrassing!) because of a big traffic accident, had to dress in my car and put on make-up, did absolutely horrible in the 3 man board interview, and afterwards, saw myself in a bathroom mirror and saw that I had lipstick and make-up smeared all over my face during the whole interview! I was mortified. But they wanted me anyways (I didn't pass the physical because of my hearing) so you never know! They might be calling you any day now.

4-24-11, 4:59pm
Thanks, everybody. It helps a lot to hear your experiences.