What didn’t work in that last job?


Can we get some learnings from those fails?…

We learn the most by failing. When you do so it’s hard to tell your future employer about your failures.

One of the most overlooked questions in a job interview is finding out “what someone failed at during their last job? 

Even if you are not interviewing for a job, consider your learnings from failure. The program you created that never got off the ground, the construction projects that went way over budget and time or the school test you studied hard for but got a low score.

Don’t get caught up in reading your own press releases and overlook the pats on your back. Simply learn how to persevere in the face of failure. A near miss, surviving a failure, doing something out of your domain, that is something that will teach you more than your degree.

A resume is just a list of all the good things you want someone to see. It doesn’t list the failures you learned from.

In 20 years of recruiting, I have found great leaders and authentic people will tell you when they have failed. They will tell you how they dropped out of grad school, failed a standardized test, launched a bad business or product or got fired from a job. They are more honest with themselves and it shows up during an interview.

In order to do big things, you need to learn how to fail.

It’s embarrassing to fail and this embarrassment starts at a young age. We are programmed that we need the highest test scores to fit in and we are only going to make it in life if we do well on our standardized tests.

You will fail, even with a high SAT or GMAT score.

You will say things, do things, not do things, and not learn concepts as fast as your peers. Sooner or maybe even years later, you will learn it really doesn’t matter. What matters is what you learned from each one of those failures.

When I meet someone who can openly talk about their failures and what they would do differently the next time, I know they have what it takes. They are self aware about themselves and they are going to do things differently the next time. Avoid someone who only talks about their successes and hide their failures. Good chance they are full of themselves.

I know a lot of things didn’t work in a candidate’s last job. That’s normal. What did they learn from them? That growth will make them better prepared for the next job.

Connect the dots from their failures and learnings to the next job.

Or fail at interviewing…