‘Prove Us Wrong:’ Company’s Rejection Email Branded Condescending Online


A Reddit user has shared an unusual rejection letter from a company, which urged the unsuccessful candidate to “prove them wrong.”

No one likes being turned down for jobs, promotions, or courses but it’s a part of everyday life. Waiting for feedback or being ghosted by interviewers can be agonizing.

Job site Indeed reported that 44 percent of applicants waited as long as two weeks for a response, while a further 15 percent waited months for news regarding a prospective job.

One company at least took the time to inform prospective applicants, but their wording hasn’t gone down well online.

A photo of the email was shared on Reddit’s MadeMeSmile forum on Tuesday by u/Effineuphoria, who said it was “heartwarming.”

They captioned the post: This is the most heartwarming rejection email I have ever received.

The email, which can be read here, said: “Well, we’ll cut right to the chase; your application wasn’t successful. And who knows, maybe we’ve made a giant mistake? Albert Einstein couldn’t land a job as a maths tutor for kids.”

“Speilberg got rejected from film school. Disney was turned down over 300 times for his ‘crazy’ mouse and park ideas. We guess the point of this is that some of the greatest success stories in history received a message much like this one at some time or another,” the email continued.

“And even though you won’t be joining [redacted] with us just yet, who knows what the future may hold? Perhaps you’ll prove us wrong. We certainly hope so.”

Despite the job hunter appreciating the words, Reddit didn’t seem to agree, as they branded it “glib” and “condescending.”

“I’m an American and I feel this to be super smug and off-putting,” user Stop_Drop_Scroll commented. “Just let me know I wasn’t accepted, wish me luck and call it a day.”

Vdzla responded: “At least I was not the only one to think that, a “normal” rejection email seems 100x better than this clown show.”

“It’s a copy/paste rejection form,” user Bob-leblaw added. “They likely send them out to everyone who wasn’t outright s****y.”

“In Australia, this kind of letter would be seen as glib,” GeelongFCNo5 thought.

Millionsofpeaches17 agreed, saying: “I’m a recruiter in the US and I find this glib. Also opens the door for a lot of unfriendly replies…”

JackTuthertits thought: “After reading through it my instinct was it was rather impersonal. I can imagine this same letter being sent out to everyone who wasn’t successful. I think I’d rather know why I didn’t get the job.”

Inked_yogi reckoned: “It’s that “prove us wrong” at the end of the letter that seemed very condescending to me.”

Some agreed with u/Effineuphoria, as Glittering-Stress-88 pointed out: “At least they sent a letter instead of just never giving any communication after the application was sent.”

The graph below, provided by Statista, shows figures relating to the Great Resignation.

You will find more infographics at Statista

Mrs-monroe added: “It’s still a kindness they went out of their way to draft up instead of nothing. They can’t personally handwrite for every applicant.”

A few people pointed out the use of the word “maths” indicated it was likely not an American company.

While there’s no right or wrong way to reject a candidate, Indeed had some helpful tips.

They advised recruiters should in fact include feedback, along with a thank-you, personalization and an invitation to apply again.

They why it’s important to let the candidates know, saying: “A job rejection email shows the applicant you recognize the effort they put into applying feelings and/or interviewing, and helps limit any negative toward your company.

“Notifying applicants will ensure they won’t be left waiting for an answer and may reduce the number of check-in emails you receive from those applicants.”

They also praised the idea of ​​a template, suspected to be what was sent out above, noting it can “reduce the amount of time spent on this task while still providing applicants the information they need.”

Newsweek reached out to u/Effineuphoria for comment.

File photo of email inbox.
A worker has shared a rejection email online, and it’s divided opinion. File photo of email inbox.
Gil-Design/Getty Images

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