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You're not going to like what I have to tell you, but if you take it to heart, it will help you in the future. Your attitude is 100% the opposite of what it should be. You need to debrief yourself on why you came up short. I'm willing to show you how, but only you can take the steps required to make it count.
I can guarantee that you will never, ever hear a CAF pilot say "why can't I catch a break?" in a debrief. If you ever hear a MAF pilot say that, punch him in the face and tell him to fix himself. Asking a question like that is a way of absolving yourself of ownership of the situation. You are the only one who can control your performance, which means that you need to figure out why you failed to reach your goal, strike your target, execute your airdrop, or get hired by a squadron.
A good debrief is the most important part of any sortie. It's an opportunity to actually learn lessons, rather than just observe them, in order to be better next time. Doing that requires brutal honesty, and often requires admitting and owning your failures and shortcomings in front of your peers. You don't have to do that yet, since this is a personal exercise, but realize that if you're going to be a successful AF pilot, you should be the type of person who can put his ego on the shelf and take a good honest look at his performance, good and bad.
Learning from a debrief usually starts with a question, called a DFP or debrief focus point. Your DFP is NOT "why can't I catch a break?". Instead, your DFP is really "why wasn't I good enough (in the eyes of the only people who matter, i.e. the ones hiring you) to land the job this time around?". That is the question that will drive your future actions and spur you to be better if you can fix it.
Once you have your DFP, identify your contributing factors, or CFs. No one knows these better than you. What are your weak points? Maybe you stayed up too late drinking before the interview, or maybe your grades weren't very good in college. How much flight time do you have? Is it less than your peers who are also applying? Remember, the people you're competing against are shit hot, top-1%-of-Americans kind of people. If you have 45 hours and a PPL under your belt but they all have 200 hours and an instrument rating, then this could be a contributing factor to the overall outcome. I realize that you don't know everything about everyone else, but you know what the weaker areas of your application are. List out 3-4 of them, ideally ones that you can improve upon moving forward. 
Step three: identify a root cause. Usually, there's one CF that's more important than the others, which led directly or indirectly to the chain of events that caused mission failure. What is your biggest shortcoming? Put yourself in the shoes of the hiring board - what part of your application would cause you to look at other applicants rather than snatching yourself (sts) up right away? Usually in aviation, everything can be done better the next day. That might not be the case for you - your college GPA is probably pretty set in stone, for example. However, there are always things that can be done to improve your application and, more importantly, yourself.
That leads straight to the fourth and final step: the fix. What can you do to improve your odds next time around? What concrete actions can you take to prevent that root cause from holding you back in the next interview? Map it out on a piece of paper and post it somewhere where you'll see it often. 
Use this framework anytime you fail and you'll find yourself succeeding more and more. No pilot has ever flown a perfect sortie, but the good ones work hard to get a little bit closer the next time around.
 


Great, solid answer. I feel like I just sat thru an initial IPUG ride.


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7 minutes ago, Flying Pillows said:

It's pretty unfair that some people get interviews and others don't.

Really dude? You're trying to get into an hyper-competitive job, had an actual Air Force pilot write out a detailed game plan of how to approach the situation, and this is your answer?

Frankly, as someone who's competing against you, I'd be pleased if more of the competition had this attitude. I'd get more interview invites, for one.

I know it's difficult. Maybe you're just venting to us, but I don't think this is the place for that.

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11 minutes ago, Flying Pillows said:

It's just heartbreaking because OK and Bama were my top places to be. I'm unsure what to do with myself now to be honest. I can't believe this happened to me. I just don't know what to do anymore. I've done everything I can and it all resulted in being told no and that hurts. It's pretty unfair that some people get interviews and others don't. You should at least be given the chance to interview before being shot down. This whole process makes so many people anxious and unhealthy. There should be a better way to do it.

Troll. If you’re gonna waste everyone’s time, at least make it funny

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In regard to the statements made by mcbush,

If you knew someone on the board, do you think it would be appropriate to ask them to look at your package to tell you why it didn't cut it for an interview? It would be awesome to get feedback directly from the people that make the ultimate decisions however I understand that there's a lot on their plate and why they wouldn't want to have to do this for everyone (or make the exception). I wouldn't want to make a bad impression even when rejected. 

Thanks 

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24 minutes ago, Jacko1 said:

In regard to the statements made by mcbush,

If you knew someone on the board, do you think it would be appropriate to ask them to look at your package to tell you why it didn't cut it for an interview? It would be awesome to get feedback directly from the people that make the ultimate decisions however I understand that there's a lot on their plate and why they wouldn't want to have to do this for everyone (or make the exception). I wouldn't want to make a bad impression even when rejected. 

Thanks 

Absolutely, I know I would ask. 

Side note: Did Alabama send both rejects and invites today? I haven't heard anything. 

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3 hours ago, Flying Pillows said:

It's pretty unfair that some people get interviews and others don't.

It is unfair. Life is unfair. Its by no means an insult to say that maybe you aren't right for the job. I might not be. I have no doubt that as a pilot I could fly fighters as effectively as any of them, but I also know that my own personality contrasts those of many fighter squadron pilots, and that could be a reason why I never get selected, if that is my fate. So what if its unfair? If a job you've never done (and therefore aren't certain you would like) is so central to your identity and existence, thats a problem. If you wanted to join a particular fraternity, but nobody would sponsor you and none of them would give you a bid, it could very well be that you wouldn't choose to be with them either, if the roles were switched.  Maybe don't turn so much of your life's happiness in something which, in the end, you cannot fully control...

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5 hours ago, Flying Pillows said:

It's just heartbreaking because OK and Bama were my top places to be. I'm unsure what to do with myself now to be honest. I can't believe this happened to me. I just don't know what to do anymore. I've done everything I can and it all resulted in being told no and that hurts. It's pretty unfair that some people get interviews and others don't. You should at least be given the chance to interview before being shot down. This whole process makes so many people anxious and unhealthy. There should be a better way to do it.

Tighten up chief. Life is about how many L’s you can take and keep moving forward. Mcbush had great advice. Do a debrief, look for ways to improve your chances next time.

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On 11/6/2018 at 9:59 AM, admdelta said:

Just had my first interview this weekend, find out in a couple weeks. Wish me luck everybody!

Congrats, that’s awesome!

Where did you interview at?

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23 minutes ago, Ultimate Fighter Pilot said:

Has anyone heard interview results from the 115th FW in Madison, Wisconsin? 

Bro, you're already the Ultimate Fighter Pilot... Why do you care about ANG openings? 

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On 11/6/2018 at 3:38 PM, PilotCandidate said:

Troll. If you’re gonna waste everyone’s time, at least make it funny

I also think he is a troll...in case you aren't though, thanks for sharing how anxious, unhealthy, heartbroken, and bothered you are with this truly unfair process. You should definitely share these feelings in your cover letter and during any interviews. 🤡

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A buddy of mine just told me Wisconsin interviewed 20 people, rejected around 5 or so and might invite the rest back for a second round of interviews. Has anyone ever heard of this before? 

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16 hours ago, Desk Jobs Suck said:

A buddy of mine just told me Wisconsin interviewed 20 people, rejected around 5 or so and might invite the rest back for a second round of interviews. Has anyone ever heard of this before? 

Really? Well that's certainly interesting... 

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16 hours ago, Desk Jobs Suck said:

A buddy of mine just told me Wisconsin interviewed 20 people, rejected around 5 or so and might invite the rest back for a second round of interviews. Has anyone ever heard of this before? 

Not unheard of. Been a part of two boards that did this.

Edited by Kiloalpha

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3 hours ago, Kiloalpha said:

Not unheard of. Been a part of two boards that did this.

I can tell you this is not true.  Everyone has been notified on where they stood about a week ago and nobody is coming back for a second round.  We had one slot for UPT this year and all interviewees was extremely competitive and made it a very difficult choice to make.  I'm not sure if the final decision has been released, but all interviewees know where they stacked up and have received feedback by this point.

If you have not, then let me know your name by PM and I'll follow up with the member of the interview board that was supposed to call you.

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4 hours ago, Ultimate Fighter Pilot said:

Does getting alternated a couple of times mean you're un-hire-able? 

I would think it means you're super close to getting hired.  Better than getting a straight up no or not getting an interview.  

Are you asking for feedback after your interviews?  What are squadrons telling you?

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4 hours ago, Ultimate Fighter Pilot said:

Does getting alternated a couple of times mean you're un-hire-able? 

Not at all. I was an alternate a couple of times before getting picked up on the following interview.

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2 hours ago, donkey said:

I would think it means you're super close to getting hired.  Better than getting a straight up no or not getting an interview.  

Are you asking for feedback after your interviews?  What are squadrons telling you?

I sure hope so. This is my 4th fighter interview, 2nd alternate spot. I do ask for feedback, it's the typical "we liked you but we like this guy better". 

 

1 hour ago, cagg011 said:

Not at all. I was an alternate a couple of times before getting picked up on the following interview.

Probably just post rejection blues but I feel like I'm everyone 2nd choice. Gotta get back on the train! 

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19 hours ago, Ultimate Fighter Pilot said:

Does getting alternated a couple of times mean you're un-hire-able? 

It could be worse. I've seen a few dudes (and gals) that have interviewed dozens of times and never got alternate.

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20 hours ago, Ultimate Fighter Pilot said:

Does getting alternated a couple of times mean you're un-hire-able? 

Like many others have said, you're in the on-deck circle when many haven't gotten that close. I have spoken to a couple folkss in my (pretty limited) travels in getting a slot that were hired as alternates and got the spot when one of the main picks split to another offer (perhaps more of a round nose world thing, but still, it happens).  

Don't take it personal that they say "we like you; we just like this guy a little better." Them's the digs. Keep asking for feedback from anyone you've spoken with at your visits and you may catch a morsel in there that you've missed or that they're hinting at they would like you to do better. It could be something out of your control: maybe you're super young and they feel like "you've got time?" Or maybe you kill the interview, but you're not trying to talk enough to guys outside of it during the meet and greets? Or maybe you're hitting the booze a bit too much during the socializing, or not bringing booze when you go? 

It could be any number of little things that get you almost there, so try to find out what you might be able to do better. Either way, you're at least getting a chance that most of the others that come interview aren't and you're close to the promised land. Keep your head up and keep trying.

Good luck!

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