Five steps to dealing with professional disappointment

Jeremy Hunt is not going to be the PM, but he can pick himself up again.

Jeremy Hunt isn’t the only person who’ll be feeling down about a missed opportunity this week. Here’s how to cope if life doesn’t go as planned

By Tim Gibson

Right from the start of the Tory leadership contest there has been a clear favourite. Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson, or “Boris” as he’s generally known, looked certain to win from the moment he announced his candidacy.

But that didn’t stop notable others from having a bash at the top job. There were 11 names in the running at the start of the contest. And foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt came closest to rivalling the Old Etonian for the keys to Number 10.

Today’s announcement of the winner of the election among 160,000 Conservative Party members confirms what we all suspected: Boris Johnson will be the next Prime Minister. Which leaves poor old Mr Hunt to lick his wounds and plan his next professional move.

    Hearing disappointing news about a job application, could be the impetus you need to think about what you really want in life.   

 

He can take some comfort from the fact he’s not alone. According to some experts, it’s harder than ever to secure a career promotion thanks to tricky economic conditions.

On the plus side, that means there’s plenty of advice on how to deal with the disappointment. Here are five things you can do to get over your missed opportunity.

1) Get stuck into doing what you do best

It may feel like the hardest thing of all, but there’s a strong case for getting stuck into your current job after a professional knock-back, and doing it to the best of your abilities.

Okay, so you know that you’re ready for a change. And you may well feel as if you were the best person for the job you missed out on. But sulking isn’t going to do any good at all.

“The way to show your superiors that you’re a quality candidate who they need to hang on to is to deal with your disappointment and keep on delivering,” says Emma Kershaw, a director at Just Recruitment Group Ltd.

“You’ve been in the running for a bigger job, which means people will be paying close attention to you in the weeks and months ahead. Now is the time to show them just how good you are.”

2) Ask for additional responsibility

For many people, the key incentive for seeking a promotion at work is the promise of an increased pay packet. But that’s rarely the whole story. If you’ve thrown your hat in the ring for a bigger job, it’s probably because you’re ready for a new challenge. Maybe you want to manage a bigger team or develop your business-planning skills.

Whatever the driver, there’s no reason why you can’t up the ante at work even though you didn’t get the new job. Ask your manager if you can take on additional responsibility, even if there’s no short-term increase in pay or status. It will show that you’re keen to develop your skills and profile. And whatever you end up doing for your next steps, it’ll all be good experience for your CV.

3) Take stock of your priorities

For some people, failing to achieve a promotion at work is a catalyst to think more widely about their life choices. It may be that the path you thought you were on isn’t right for you, after all.

Emma Kershaw advises making a list of all the things you hope to achieve in life before retirement.

“Ask yourself if your current career trajectory will help you achieve those things,” she says. “It could be that you’ve got sucked into the progression route because it feels like the right thing to do. By taking stock of your priorities, you may find that the promotion wasn’t actually what you wanted.

“This could be the moment at which you realise what you really want from life and have the courage to pursue it.”

4) Find a distraction from work

Disappointment may not be the end of the line...

Another helpful technique for dealing with professional disappointment is to focus on something other than work.

That’s not to say you should stop doing your current job to the very best of your ability (see above). But it may be that investing your energy in a new hobby or interest is just the tonic you need.

“Perhaps you’ve always wanted to have singing lessons, or learn how to play jazz piano,” says Ms Kershaw. “Maybe there’s a sport you’d like to try, or you want to save for a big holiday.

“Finding a non-work-related focus can help you get things in perspective. It’ll stop you dwelling on what might have been, and may well improve your work-life balance.”

5) Seek a new opportunity elsewhere

If none of these suggestions work for you, you may need to confront an uncomfortable truth: it could be time to move on.

You’ll know within a few months of failing in your promotion bid if you’ll find it possible to stay in your current role. If you feel you’ve outgrown it, or feel even an ounce of resentment towards the person who secured the job you wanted, it’s probably worth moving on.

“Polish your CV and get in touch with a recruitment consultant,” advises Ms Kershaw. “They’ll help you work out the best opportunity for your skills and experience.

“Who knows? It may be that you end up in an even better job than the one you missed out on.”

Jeremy Hunt can take solace from that. And if he needs further encouragement, he’d do well to remember David Miliband. Losing a party leadership contest didn’t work out too badly for him…

First Published 23 July 2019

© 2019 Just Recruitment Group Ltd

If you enjoyed this article, you may like: How to establish a presence in the digital age

You may also enjoy: How employers can close the social mobility gap

Jobs currently available

Driver
Sector: Transport, Logistics and Shipping
Salary: £18,000 - £22,000 per annum
Location: Chelmsford
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: 909015
About the role

Just Recruitment is looking for a driver to join a large and well-established business, with multiple branches across the UK.

This position will be based at their Chelmsford branch.

The role involves delivering various items to locations in and around the Chelmsford area.

You must have a full clean driving licence and have experience of driving either transit or LWB vans.

Working Hours:

  • 45 per week Mon-Fri 7:30 - 5 plus 2 Saturday mornings (8am-12pm) per month - paid at overtime rates!

Bonuses:

  • Salary Negotiable.
  • Attendance bonus scheme.
  • Company pension scheme.
  • Shared profit scheme.
  • Uniform and PPE provided.

Duties will include:

  • Deliveries in and around Chelmsford
  • Assisting with various warehouse duties
  • Proving a friendly service to customers and other staff whilst out on the road and within the branch as and when required.
  • Working with the team to ensure the branch runs smoothly and customers are delighted with the service.

In order to be considered for this role you must have worked in a similar role, have excellent IT skills and a good telephone manner.

This is a great opportunity to join an organisation that promotes from within, provides extra training and development and further company benefits.

Read more
Workshop Technician/Mechanic
Sector: Engineering and Manufacturing
Salary: £17,500 - £27,000 per annum
Location: Hadleigh
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: 909014
About the role

Just Recruitment is recruiting for a Workshop Technician/Mechanic on behalf of a leading independent parts specialists based on the outskirts of Sudbury, Suffolk.

Salary;

  • £17,500 - £27,000 depending on experience.

Great working environment in a high-spec workshop with heating and insulated flooring, to ensure employees are comfortable all year round.

Duties include:

  • Repair and refurbish motors and gearboxes.
  • Stripping down engines.
  • Disassemble and fix parts.
  • Complete root-cause analysis.

Benefits;

  • 23 days annual leave, plus bank holidays.
  • Free parking.
  • Profit share scheme, available after probation.
  • Medical scheme, available after probation.
  • PPE provided including boots and company branded tshirts / fleeces.
  • Training courses.

This is a fantastic opportunity to join a great company offering lots of progression and excellent benefits.

Candidates must drive due to the location of the company, and will occasionally be required to drive company vehicles.

 

 

Read more
Business Development & Account Manager
Sector: Sales
Salary: To be discussed on application
Location: Witham
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: 909013
About the role

Are you looking to work for an exciting new start-up business offering a great opportunity for you to grow?

Have you worked to targets, and enjoy selling?

Just Recruitment  is delighted to be recruiting for an Account Manager for our client based in Witham.

The role of the Account Manager is to build and develop relationships with new members, working with them throughout their one month free trial and ultimately upgrading them to a paying member.

There will be no cold calling in this role, all leads have come to express their interest!

If you love working in a team, talking to new people, have worked in sales before and have good verbal and written skills then this could be the role for you!

This is a full-time, permanent role working Monday – Friday.

 

 

 

Read more
Legal Secretary
Sector: Law and Security
Salary: £22,000 per annum
Location: Clacton on Sea
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: 909000
About the role

Just Recruitment is excited to be recruiting for one of the East of England’s longest established Legal Firms.

Operating for over 250 years, they are a full-service law firm, which has doubled in sized over the past four years, and they are looking to expand further by hiring a new Legal Secretary for their Clacton branch.

They are looking for someone with experience of;

  • Electronic diary management.
  • Telephone liaison.
  • Front of house/reception duties.
  • Digital transcription systems.
  • Using accounts software.
  • Various other clerical and administrative duties.

The ideal candidate will have experience working as a Legal Secretary, with a genuine passion for building a career within the law.

They must also have fast typing speeds and the ability to multi-task effectively.

In return you will receive;

  • A competitive salary.
  • 20 days holiday + bank holidays.
  • Contributory pension scheme.
  • As well as a whole host of other benefits.
Read more
Wedding and Special Events Sales Manager - Maternity Cover
Sector: Hospitality and Events Management
Salary: £20,000 - £24,000 per annum
Location: Witham
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: 908437
About the role

Luxury, grandeur and spectacular!

Our client, one of the finest country house venues in the tantalising Essex Countryside have a fantastic opportunity for you.

They are seeking a full time Wedding and Sales Manager to join their team to support the corporate, wedding sales and planning team on a 12 Month Maternity Cover Contract.

You will be working alongside the Head of Wedding Planning and the CEO in a buzzing environment, that requires you to focus on every little detail to deliver beyond expectations.

You will be responsible for;

  • Hosting all wedding show rounds.
  • Preparing for open evenings and open days.
  • Following up with potential brides or clients to discuss set up and more detailed planning.
  • Working alongside the Operations Team.
  • Work in conjunction with all event staff and catering partners to ensure the function is delivered to the high standards expected.
  • Manage external suppliers.
  • To assist other department managers as and when required.

Please note - this venue will be holding a sensational Christmas Fayre in 2020, along side the normal duties you will also have a heavy hand within the planning and organisation of this spectacular event!

If you have previous experience of wedding sales and managing weddings then we want to hear from you!

Due to the location, you must hold a full UK license and have access to a car.

 

 

Read more