Competition within the actuarial job market is becoming stiffer with every passing year. This is because the number of actuarial students has been increasing rapidly over the years. One of the most dreaded moments for any actuarial job seeker is when you get a ‘No’ from your job application. Not only it hurts you emotionally, you lose your self-esteem and your drive to move on. How to handle a ‘No’ in an emotionally conducive manner?

  1. Say “Thank you” and leave gracefully

First thing you need to do when you get a “No”- control your emotions by taking several deep breaths. Cool down before you respond or if appropriate, say “Thank you” and leave gracefully. Leave with grace and a good impression. You will not know that the next time you apply for a job with the company, they will give you a “Yes”. Always be professional.

  1. Assess the situation objectively

When you find yourself calm enough, access the situation objectively. Take a third party’s perspective. Analyse two things: First, was it a valid or invalid rejection? If it was a valid rejection, e.g. your resume was written in a poor manner/you said the wrong things during the interview, make a note to change it.

If it is an invalid rejection, e.g. the firm had an internal transfer, then forget about it. Do not accept responsibility for someone else’s behaviour.

Secondly, access what kind of ‘No’ you just received. Was it a sure ‘No’, ‘No, you do not have the required skills for the job’ or a not sure ‘No’. By analysing this way you can then strategize how to deal with similar situations in the future. Be sure to keep in touch with companies who gave you a not sure ‘No’. You may be the first candidate that crosses their mind the next time a vacancy comes up at the firm.

  1. Accept the reality.

Keep in mind that if there are people who will say yes, there will always be people who will say no. Believe it or not, in many times a rejection has nothing to do with how good you are personally, but more to do with your sales and presentation skills.

You may be the best actuarial candidate out there for the company but if you are unable to show your future employer that, the result is a “No” from the company’s end. Take up a few sales training courses to improve your selling skills because this will come in really handy in your actuarial career. You must be able to sell yourselves to convinces employers to hire you as a actuarial candidate.

  1. Learn from rejection

View rejection as a form of feedback. Keep an open mind to learn from each rejection rather than closing down to any feedback. Do not get attached to the answer. Instead, think of how you could have approached the job differently. Hone your skills in areas which you are lacking. This way, you are more likely to improve to become a better actuarial candidate.

Never give up during your job search despite the many “No’s” that you may get from your job applications. Remember, most employers may say No to you, but if you persist and learn from every single rejection, you will become the best actuarial candidate out there!

To your success!

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