My advice for job seekers on how to survive ghosting includes a mindset shift that transforms ghosting into valuable intel.
It’s time to liberate from the trauma of ghosting!
First, let's be clear on what ghosting is.
Ghosting is when a person reaches out to another person via phone, text, or email and receives absolute silence in return. Ouch.
When ghosting happens in or around "work", it not only hurts, but it triggers anxiety since work is tied to survival.
In our current age of high contact, responding back has become easier, not harder to do. We have the text tap back and the email auto reply, for starters.
With these tools, silence means only one of three things: 1) the message was overlooked, 2) the receiver is too busy to respond, or 3), the receiver is choosing not to respond.
While #3 is the definition of true ghosting, #1 and #2 still feel like ghosting. So what does one do to manage the anxiety, hurt, and maybe even resentment that ghosting triggers in our working souls?
Here is expert intel for how you can keep your sanity in a culture that routinely "ghosts", while all the while leveraging ghosting events to help you shape and direct your time, energy and decision making.
First, Feel the Feels!
Do not ignore your feelings. If you do, then not only are you being ghosted by the other, but you are also ghosting yourself!
Feelings are valuable indicators of what is working and what is not. Never ever abandon self. Abandonment is the key trauma every human is trying to recover from. Re-instate your feelings as the superpower guidance system in your life that it is meant to be.
Next, Analyze the Scenario.
Job Applications. Likely your application was received via the ATS (the Application Tracking System) and is in process. What you don't know, though, is whether your application matched to the posting’s key words, and if it did match, whether the delays are due to a full pipeline of candidates or a hire decision already underway.
My advice is to expect ghosting with applications and never take it personally. All will ultimately lead to your highest good. Fifty percent of the job search is your own engagement, and the other fifty percent is chance. The two make a whole. A successful job search means learning to live with a reasonable amount of uncertainty, and even disharmony.
Thank You Notes. Human Resources in many instances forbids their hiring managers from responding to applicants' outreach (so as not to complicate the process). This makes sense. So, when sending your follow-up thank you email, don't expect a reply. The value of your follow-up that synchs to the interview is signaling professionalism and interest – whether you hear back, or not.
Two Weeks Post Interview. If two weeks have gone by and there’s no response, I do recommend you follow up with the recruiter or the direct manager (if no recruiter is involved).
Send a brief email letting them know you remain very interested in the role and are checking in to see if the position and your application remain active.
Any company that is worthy of your time and commitment will reply. If they don't, you're being guided to let that application sit idle and germinate while you continue to focus on cultivating other job prospects.
Always Stay "Biodynamic"!
As I mentioned above, your job search is a 50 / 50 partnership between you and chance. That means you want to always keep your search 'biodynamic' by looking at three multiple pathways at once.
Never mono-crop your life!
By the grace of chance, magic unfolds everywhere – so keep chance fed by sowing your seeds far and wide.
This approach not only supports your mental health when it comes to your job search, but it ensures your ultimate success.
Capture the Intel!
In this 50/50 partnership world, anything and all that occurs outside of your control – like ghosting – is highly valuable intel.
When a person or organization simply stops communicating, then the gentle hand of fate is directing you elsewhere.
Life is poetic, my friends (not only practical). Look to chance as your strategic partner and embrace it all as a valued mentor leading you towards your highest good.
Career Ecology = Work~Life Empowerment
Work is the modern day hero's journey! It’s fraught with suffering and success. The nature of Career Ecology is to support your Work~Life Empowerment at every touch point, including job search, resume, interviewing, and social/emotional empowerment. Browse Career Ecology to see how easy it is to turn on and tap your personal power and never feel lost, abandoned, or existentially stressed about work – ever again.
About Lori Wallace
Founder & Work~Life Doula
The challenging world of employment is Lori’s landscape for healing. To ease human suffering and empower authentic relating, Lori founded igMedical Search in 2005 to effectively transform head hunting into human connection. Ten years later, she birthed Career Ecology to unlock limitless growth via her signature Feng Shui Resume, Mindful Interviewing, and Biodynamic Job Search Method – as well as “Way of the Monarch" (a guided e-book and journey into real self). In essence, Lori reframes the search for meaningful employment into a gateway to wholeness where all may seek and find liberation and limitless prosperity.
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