Turning Down A Job Interview Without Burning Bridges

When you have critically analyzed a company and you wouldn’t want to continue with their interview process, how do you turn down a job interview without burning bridges?

You owe it to yourself and the company in question, to decline their interview respectfully.

If you were the employer in question, wouldn’t you want an employee to be honest and straightforward? 

Now, Let us see how you can turn down a job interview without burning bridges.

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Valid Reasons To Turn Down A Job Interview

1. You Got A Job Offer Elsewhere

Employers and managers are aware that top candidates attend other job interviews.

As a candidate, you must show your gratitude for making it to the screening stage.

Do not in any way talk down on the company, but rather thank them for considering you and let them know that so many people would love to work with them.

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2. The Role Isn’t A Fit

If you critically think about it, it is not that the role isn’t a good fit but that the responsibilities attached to the role don’t align with what you want.

Explain what kind of role you want and the responsibilities that you can handle. Respectfully decline the interview if you cannot handle the role.

3. The Company Culture Isn’t A Fit

You have likely carried out some research about the company after you must have applied for a job opening.

Reviews from the employee can add up to a candidate turning down an interview.

Nonetheless, tell the manager the kind of workplace/work setting you wish to be part of without making them feel bad.

After this, you can now turn down the job interview politely.

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4. You Are Happy At Your Current Job

If you feel that your current workplace suits you better than the company inviting you for n interview, you should turn down the job interview.

If you don’t see any tangible reason to leave your current job, it’s best you don’t waste your time and the company’s time proceeding with an interview session.

5. You Know Someone Who Worked At The Company And Had A Bad Experience

As stated earlier you must look up a company before proceeding with an interview session.

Check out the company and be sure that you are okay with their rules and working conditions.

If you know some of the employees you should ask them about the company. I believe they would give you an authentic review.

If the company does not sit well with you you should turn down a job interview at the appropriate time.

Wrong Reasons People Turn Down An Interview

Yes, people turn down job interviews due to some silly reasons.

Let us check out some of them.

1. You Are Afraid Of Rejection

Some tension before your interview session is normal. However, tuning down a job interview, so that you don’t get rejected by a company isn’t the best way to deal with the tension that you are feeling.

If you are feeling like the world should come to an end because of this interview, you should think out of the box. Prepare yourself for the worst thing that can happen during your interview then outline your plan B. 

Must read: How To Write A Rejection Letter Before An Interview

2. You Are Unsure That You Want The Job

Part of the reason you are thinking of turning down a job interview is that you are not sure that you can carry out the responsibility of the role you are applying for.

The most important thing is that you go for the interview with an open mind. Who knows you might find out that you were wrong about the job and you want it after all. 

Or you might gather enough facts to know that you don’t like the job. Either way, it’s much better than playing a guessing game.

3. It’s The “Wrong” Opening — But You Admire The Company

If there’s a vacancy in a company that you love, and you don’t like the available vacancy you should apply and push through with an interview.

Use the opportunity to make a good impression on the employer, you may be lucky that the employer gets impressed and create another opening just to get you on board.

4. There’s One Person You Don’t Like At The Company

That you are not on good terms with an employee shouldn’t make you turn down a job interview.

Remember one person cannot run a company and mistimes our first impressions are wrong.

Consider making amends with this person and accept the job interview. You can go as far as having a straightforward discussion with the person in question and settle your differences.

However, if you feel that you cannot amend your relationship with the person you should turn down the job interview. Check out: How To Get Along With A Coworker You Don’t Like

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You’ve Decided To Turn down A Job Interview. Now What?

You must take your time in deciding that you want to turn down a job interview. Don’t let anybody pressure you into accepting or declining an interview. 

However, once you are sure that the job doesn’t sit well with you, it’s time you take an action as soon as possible.

If you decide to take a follow-up interview, it’s important to inform the employer that you do not want the job. Remember, that they are also attending to other candidates that applied for the job too, so don’t waste their time.

In your response, be sincere, direct, respectful, and professional. Acknowledge and thank them for selecting you for an interview. Keep it brief and make it professional.


How you turn down a job interview is important to you and the company that selected you for an interview.

Put yourself in the company’s shoes and let it direct whatever decision you make.

Who knows, how you respond to the company might lead to a valuable connection or opportunity for you in the future.

Nonetheless, if you have any questions regarding this piece please drop your comment in the comment section.

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