The Happiness Professor

Got Bad News – Give It To Them Straight

What do you do when you have a job candidate or colleague that asks why they did not get the job? You give it to them straight.  Communicate with their best interests in mind, release the fear and tell the truth.  Telling bad news it not  something many of us would volunteer to put on our daily schedules but there is a way to turn the seemingly negative information into a positive. You can do it!


According to the Associated Press, unemployment is hovering around 8.3% so there are many people unemployed and looking for work. Job loss affects us all no matter the gender, age, race or education level. Unemployment can be a cause stress, anxiety and depression so give the bad news with empathy and compassion.



Tell the job candidate not only that they did not get the job but why.  Providing feedback allows you to give constructive information regarding areas in the application and interview that need more work as well as gives the person a chance to correct prior mistakes and do better next time. Be specific in your responses. If they have spelling errors or poor grammar point those issues out. If they were late on the interview tell them how being late is unacceptable and in many cases it is viewed as a lack of judgement or poor planning.


Giving them resources. This is a great way to empower them for future success. If you have job search strategies, job links, articles share them. If you have specific tips or suggestions like developing a short and succinct title that describes them as a candidate and will help them stand out, pass it on you can find many resources like this in Teach Online. Empowering and giving back to others helps you feel good and can be just what is needed to help the candidate change their status from unemployed to gainfully employed.


Dr. Carolyn Edwards is an empowerment coach, speaker, trainer, author and graduate management professor  helping people worldwide live amazing, be amazing and do amazing things by walking in their purpose, living with passion, doing what they love and loving what they do. Follow her on Twitter or Facebook and get life empowering books such as I Look Good, I Feel Good I Am Good the Woman’s Guide to Love, Peace and Happiness, Teach Online and others.



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