Ask Simply Hired: Manipulation, Rejection and Resume Dates

At Simply Hired, we come across many questions from job seekers, from what to say to tough interview questions to how to know if you should quit your job. Here are answers to some of the common, and sometimes wacky, questions from job seekers.

How should I reply to job rejection?

Searching for a job can be a long and challenging process, and it’s common to be rejected from jobs before you find the one that’s a perfect fit for you. Your first step is to accept that it’s a normal part of the process and not take it personally; allowing one rejection to influence your attitude (or activity) may cost you a job that’s actually a good fit.

For many rejections, there will be no direct reply. You’ll simply move on and tweak your resume  for the next job opportunity. However, if you receive a particularly warm rejection, such as, “We really enjoyed meeting you and we think there might be potential for future openings,” you’ll want to keep in touch.

Connect with your contacts from the job interview on LinkedIn, and regularly check the company website (or sign up for email alerts) to see when another opportunity becomes available.  

How can I get a job without a car?

Getting a job without a car might seem like an insurmountable obstacle, but we’re happy to report that it’s not! In a recent post, contributor LeeAnn Prescott shares her carless career story and provides a lot of insight into navigating the job interview and different strategies for making it work, including the following tips:

  • Evaluate job opportunities based on the company’s proximity to where you live, as well as bus maps, Google Maps, and rental locations.
  • Consider a car-for-hire service such as Uber, Lyft, or SideCar. In some urban locations, even using an Uber every day can be cheaper than parking, maintaining, and paying for a car.
  • Tap into your community to see if you can carpool or swap cars with like-minded individuals.
  • For larger companies in certain cities, check out employer-provided transit options such as shuttles or buses.

How should I write dates on my resume?

Like most items on your resume, listing the dates is more about clarity and consistency than it is about one format over another. The traditional format in the United States is to write out the month and use numbers for the year:

December 2015

Therefore, on your resume your dates for a particular job might look like the following:

December 2014-December 2015

This allows the reader to clearly assess the date and period of time you worked for a given company without processing too many numbers. However, if your formatting is cleaner with forward-slashes, periods, or shortened years (such as 12/2015, Dec. 2015, or Dec. 2014-15), it won’t be gauche so long as all dates on the resume are listed in the same way.  

Should I follow-up on a job application in person?     

Very few companies would welcome an unscheduled in-person visit, so we recommend you follow-up via the original application method (if you follow up at all). If you turned in an application in person for a retail or job with a small business, showing up in person may be appropriate. If you turned in an online application or an application via email, the company will notify you if they want to schedule an interview and most prefer that you don’t follow up proactively.

How should I deal with manipulative coworkers?         

It’s practically impossible to avoid facing at least one manipulative coworker in the course of your career, if not several. Fortunately, there’s a lot you can do to protect yourself and your ability to be successful when someone you work with is using deceptive behavior to get you to do something.

The first step is to control and define the behavior you find manipulative so that you can understand its purpose. Just trying to get someone to do something isn’t necessarily manipulative, such as a coworker trying to get a fellow employee to turn a report in on time so that the team will not be punished for late reports.

Analyze the situation from a 3rd party’s perspective. If the behavior is legitimate (such as in the above example), address it head on with a firm but clear, “Thank you for the reminder. I will do my best to turn reports in on time from now on without you needing to remind me,” to stop the behavior.

If the behavior is not legitimate, or if it does not stop after you address it clearly, you’ll need to assertively ask them to stop or politely say “No” to the requests that are not mutually beneficial.

Read more about manipulative coworkers in this post.

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