In 2010, I interviewed down at Palm for the Global Director of Brand Strategy job the day the company was bought by Hewlett Packard. Poor timing, but whatareyagoannado? I'm actually not quite sure if they ended up hiring anyone for the job. What I do know is that the recruiter called me a week or so later and said that the team had decided that I was not the right fit. Looking back on it, there are a few reasons that I might have made the same decision about me. For one, I'd never been a brand strategist before (though I was savvy in the area of brand strategy). But I wanted to be open to the possibility that I'd fucked up the interviews.
Unemployment, if nothing else, gives you the opportunity to fail and learn in ways that are pretty low impact. Often times, your failure in the workplace does not produce such black and white results – thus you can fail to learn crucial lessons. Yes, you can royally fuck up the interview by doing or saying one small thing wrong. Yes, that time that you got drunk the night before did affect your performance and ruined your chances. Yes, you were ill prepared to talk about your past jobs. You were unprepared to talk about the industry. Yes, you dwelled too long on the negative.
Unemployment gives you the opportunity to fail and fail and fail again. And, hopefully, to learn from those failures. This is a learning opportunity you may never get again. Use it. Write down a list of things that may have contributed to the interview not going well. Are any of those things controllable as you see it? Write down some things you might do differently next time.
What I would have done differently on the Palm thing:
1) Develop a more solid opinion about the brands in the space - where they positioned themselves and where the opportunties were. I still think the company was headed in the wrong direction strategically, and I even said as much in the interview. They may not have liked that I mentioned that, but I wouldn't have changed that repsonse.
2) Since I'd never been a brand strategist before, I should have researched a little more as to what that job entailed. There's a research component that I basically knew nothing about. I should have not only understood it, but also had an opinion about how I might have tackled it.
In essence, I should have been more prepared.
Have you ever nose dived in an interview? What did you learn from it?