1. Section Editor(s): Laskowski-Jones, Linda MS, APRN, ACNS-BC, CEN, FAWM, FAAN

Article Content

I think of June as a month of transitions. For many, school ends. It's a time of graduation from nursing school as well as from graduate and postgraduate programs. Armed with shiny new degrees and credentials, nurses seeking fresh career opportunities engage in the job search. With updated cover letters, resumes, and interview strategies, they step onto the playing field to compete for the prized position. But what happens when that prize goes to someone else?

Figure. No caption a... - Click to enlarge in new windowFigure. No caption available.

No matter if it's June or any other month of the year, the job market is tough today. Whether it's an entry-level position or one that requires specific nursing experience or graduate credentials, there are likely more competitors than available jobs. So, once the word comes back that the coveted position has been filled, what's next?


Disappointment is certainly expected and quite a normal response, especially if the role was one a candidate had been seeking and preparing for over a long period. Even more challenging and potentially awkward are situations in which friends or colleagues vie for the same job and one succeeds. The corollary is that the other applicants didn't. When coworkers have front-row seats to the match, the dynamics can take on a wild life of their own.


How a candidate handles the news that he or she wasn't selected for a job can substantially influence future success in landing a choice role. The secret to success is grace. That means not only avoiding negative reactions, including throwing friends or colleagues under the proverbial bus in an effort to justify how bad the decision was, but also maintaining a positive relationship with the hiring manager and interview team members.


Consider interviews as a way to showcase career accomplishments, discuss goals and aspirations, and gain valuable feedback to be better positioned for the next great opportunity. At the end of the day, hiring managers recognize that for any one position, there may be two or more terrific people qualified for the job. The manager is in an excellent position to offer career advice and facilitate the job search for candidates not chosen who nonetheless demonstrate high potential along with emotional intelligence. It's the impression you leave at the end of the interaction that paves the future path.


Until next time,


Linda Laskowski-Jones, MS, APRN, ACNS-BC, CEN, FAWM, FAAN

Figure. No caption a... - Click to enlarge in new windowFigure. No caption available.

Editor-in-Chief, Nursing2016 Vice President: Emergency & Trauma Services Christiana Care Health System, Wilmington, Del.