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January 28, 2010

One Person's Revenge on the Job Search Black Hole

Job seekers far and wide have expressed their anger and frustration about the job search black hole. And in this economy, folks seem to be getting lost in it more often.


But for all of you who have felt this discouragement, you may have a new hero: writer Neal Hirschfield. In a NY Times blog, he explores the electronic snub and details his tale of revenge.


The story begins innocently enough with his being invited to interview for a magazine. He does so and even completes and returns an editing test at the company's request. Then three months go by without a word.


"The magazine had left me in limbo. I was going to have my revenge," he writes.

"Sitting down at my computer one morning, I emailed the managing editor to say that I had happily accepted the job. More specifically, I wrote that I was 'delighted to learn that I will be joining the editorial team!' I went on to say that 'the salary and vacation are fine and I will report for duty bright and early Monday morning.'"


Of course, this results in the magazine contacting him in all sorts of ways. Eventually he speaks with the HR director, where he really tries to get across that it is not right to treat job seekers this way. Spoiler alert: no, he did not get the job.


While I don't recommend you make this a part of your job search follow-up, it is nice to know that people are out there standing up for what is right.


Check out this advice for what to do while you're in the job search black hole and share your stories about how you combat this feeling of limbo below. 


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Posted by Norma on January 28, 2010 at 09:26 AM in Job Search | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack (0)


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In my opinion, it's a matter of basic common sense to send an email letting the candidate know that he or she is not selected for the job.

And frankly, i don't understand why this is so hard to do, even when you have hundreds of candidates! Candidates are like customers, you never know when you'll need them in the future, so you better keep them happy or at least do your best not to make them unhappy.

Posted by: Gabriel Gheorghiu | Jan 28, 2010 1:13:57 PM

Agreed with the previous comment. It's a courtesy to notify applicants even if they are rejected or not considered for the job opening.

I've been through many instances where employers don't have the decency to give a simple and quick response. Instead, they keep you hopelessly waiting.

Kudos to Neal.

Posted by: Jason | Feb 5, 2010 12:42:33 AM

The economy is going to turn around, and the employers who do not have the courtesy to let candidates know their status will be remembered for their poor behavior. Ironically, the few companies who not only make the effort, but who do so promptly and professionally stand out in my search....it seems currently so easy to stand out of the crowd, since so many companies participate in the black hole, why not make the gesture of sending that email? It is an investment in the future, and the wise companies get it.

Posted by: Anne Schell | Feb 5, 2010 1:45:05 AM

This is a great story. This has happened to me many times...the no response from employers part. They think that you're just a little fish in a huge ocean of applicants. What they forget is that the world is very small, and the company ends up having loads of dissatisfied people out there spreading negativity about their organizations.

I have a friend who was in an upwardly mobile position and ended up getting a colleague fired. It turns out that my friend was laid off, and the person he got fired was in a hiring position. He was not even allowed in for an interview. The world is indeed a small place.

Posted by: D Robinson | Feb 8, 2010 8:16:37 PM

This is very interesting and what a great idea to email the company saying you're happy to start Monday! :)

I was just out of a job for 8 months myself, so I'm familiar with the frustration of job-hunting. While I was looking for work, I stumbled upon an interesting site which I think helped me the most - www.CareerRating.com. Through this site, you can send your former bosses a survey, asking them to rate your job performance. Then you forward this rating to your potential bosses (stick it on your resume). It's like a credit score for your career. Pretty cool tool and it's free. Just sharing.

Posted by: Alla | Feb 8, 2010 10:26:34 PM

This all happened due to miscommunication. They should have communicated on the spot that we don't find you fitting in our job profile.

Posted by: lalit | Mar 11, 2010 7:05:58 PM

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