Holiday shouldn’t be a deal-breaker

By Mick O’Connor, Career Coach, Sli Nua Careers Athlone

Mick O'Connor, Career Coach
Mick O’Connor, Career Coach

Q: The interview is on June 4. I’m going on a week’s holidays on June 18. I’m afraid it will come against me? Should I tell them during the interview, or say nought for now? (IK, email).

A: First off, a good holiday never came against anyone. Even the man who died suddenly on holidays can ‘look mighty entirely’ in his casket, God spare him the, er, healty.

I jest. In my view, you’ve nothing to worry about for the following two reasons.

  1. Most jobs take at least a month to fill. There’s the usual shuffling over and back after the interview, often featuring a second interview, a couple of days for the decision to be made, an offer to the successful candidate, a request for a contract, a few queries about the contract, and so on. That can easily eat up a few weeks;
  2. Companies appreciate that the successful candidate may wish to give another employer notice of a fortnight or a month – either because they are obliged to, or because they don’t wish to burn bridges, or both.

Ergo, the timeline you mention looks to be in your favour. But even if it weren’t, I still wouldn’t panic – at this stage, the company are trawling around to find the best candidate, and, when they find that person, they are likely to realise that it’s worth waiting a week for Mr/Ms Right rather than rushing in to appoint someone else who happens to be available without imminent interruption.

Your challenge on June 4 is to convince the employer you’re the best person for the job – and that you will be the best person all year round for the foreseeable future. Focus not on covering up the unavoidable reality that you have a holiday planned, but on highlighting your suitability for the role.

Hopefully you will have reason to celebrate when you’re on holiday. Then again, no-one needs reason to celebrate when they’re on holiday. If you detect jealousy on my part, you’re right.

Mick O’Connor is a Career Coach with Sli Nua Careers and works out of Athlone. You can read more about him, and make a booking HERE for CV Preparation and Interview Training.

More articles from his blog can be accessed HERE