How You Handle The Bad News Says A Lot About You

goodbadI was recently digging through a folder on my computer where I store good voicemails from customers.  One particular message stood out from several years ago.  The message was from someone I interviewed for a job.

In this case, I had interviewed the person right before a holiday weekend.  That person then called me and left a couple messages over that weekend.  After making my hiring decision, I called back and left a message to let the candidate know they were not hired.

The call back from this person resulted in a message that I’ll never forget.  The message started out with a very polite tone but quickly went south.  The candidate thanked me for the interview and then went on to say that they would never want to work for a man that doesn’t call back (over a 4 day holiday weekend).  Finally, they hoped our company failed in the worst way possible and that we all lost our jobs.

Wow!  After I got over the initial shock, I found myself grateful that I didn’t extended an offer to that candidate.  You see, in life you will receive both good news and bad news.  Bad news is never easy to stomach, but the way you respond says a lot about you.  When customers or life deal you bad news, practice responding gracefully and spinning it to a positive.


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  • That message says a lot about the foundation of that potential hire. Something must have told you inside not to hire that candidate and, man oh man, you were right. Well lucky for all of us your company not only has survived, but has thrived. Yay for Great post Jeremy

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