I've been on the job market for a little while now. I got laid off from my previous job, thanks to recent changes in the economy. Fortunately, the job market is fairly active at the moment. Inside of a week of finding out I was being laid off, I had two phone screens and an in-person interview.
One company with which I interviewed recently, I felt was going to be a sure thing. The phone interviews went very well, and when I met them in-person, everything seemed to go well. I had a great conversation with the manager, and the interview with the development team was great. I felt like it was a great team, like it was a great group of guys to work with, and that we would get along wonderfully. They seemed reasonably impressed with what I knew and what I could bring to the company as well.
I did have another company that was wanting to bring me on. They had worked with me before, they knew my capabilities, and I think they were nervous that I might take another offer (I had done it before — no hard feelings to them, but at the time, they didn't have anything for me, and I had another offer that was really good). I wasn't going to tell them no until I knew I was going to take another offer, so of course I was eager to see if I was going to get one from the interview. (I was pretty sure I would, but I did want to be sure the offer was in the ballpark of my desired salary/benefits.)
This is where it helps to be working through a recruiter. I can call him and pester him all I want, without fear of turning off the potential employer for calling them directly too much. ;)
I finally got their decision. They said I was a great fit and fully qualified, but they were going to go with someone who had just a little more expertise or experience or something. Now, fortunately, I did have interest from the other company, so I am able to switch over, accept, and start working on this other project. Even if I'm not sure it's ideal, the fact is, it's work, and as such, it's income. (There are also other benefits, such as a decent health care plan, not far from my kids' school, more of a "known quantity" as I've worked with them before...)
The annoying thing is, this isn't the first time I've heard that explanation. "Yeah, you'd be perfect, but someone else is better." It just leaves me wondering. Is it the truth? What is it that I could've improved on so that I could be the one that's just "a little better"? Or was there a flaw with me that they're not telling me? Or was this other guy's advantage more of an inside — a friend or relative that as good as had the job from the beginning? (Although usually it's the bigger companies that bother with interviewing just to say they did; this was a smaller company.)
Then again, I had been praying that I would be guided to the right job for me and my family. Although I think I would've enjoyed the work, it was a bit of a commute, which would've taken me away from my family. Perhaps that, or other reasons that I couldn't see, would've made this job not as good as something else.
In any case, it's hard to be too upset. Instead of having to make a difficult decision between two opportunities, the options narrowed themselves down for me. It's almost more of a relief, actually. And, I now know where my next few paychecks, health insurance, and so forth are coming from beyond the next two weeks. I know my wife can relax a bit, too, knowing everything's pretty much taken care of.