Thanks but No Thanks

I spent last summer hunting for a new job. I discovered a new phenomenon. It’s called a “failure to communicate”. Job hunting is frustrating and emotional to begin with, but the lack of communication on the part of schools just adds to the frustration.

The job hunting process goes something like this:

  1. You complete numerous online applications depending on the position and location you desire.
  2. You wait
  3. And you wait some more
  4. And you wait a little more
  5. The phone finally rings, a school wants to interview you for the position for which you applied.
  6. You go for the interview; they tell you they will make a decision soon.
  7. You go home and wait for a call, email or letter to let you know whether you were selected or not.
  8. You wait
  9. And you wait some more.
  10. And you wait a little more
  11. You call them; that position has been filled.
  12.  The process continues.

I interviewed with one large district 10 times this summer, seven different schools. Three of them I was called back for a second interview.  A second interview meant that they had narrowed the field to 3 or 4 candidates. In the days following each second interview I waited for some form of notification, and waited, and waited some more. I still have not been notified that I was not selected. I just made the assumption that I wasn’t selected based on the silence.

It is time to return to a time when communication was important. If you interview a candidate, then they deserve some form of communication letting them know the status of the position. I realize there may be over 100 applicants for a position and notifying each of them may not be warranted, but if you have time to interview them, then you have time to write them a letter, email them, or call them. People understand “no” more than “I have not heard from School X”.

If typing individual letters is time consuming, then buy a stack of pre-printed post cards with a message on them that you can place an adhesive label to and mail to each candidate. Make an effort to communicate, especially with the people you took time to interview.

David R. Taylor

25 Year Teacher, Coach and Principal

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