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Career Column with Jennifer Nice: Master the Art of Thank Yous
Author: Jennifer Nice
Posted: January 7, 2015
COMMUNICATION TIP #1

MASTER THE ART OF THANK YOUS

IT'S MORE THAN A FORMALITY. A WELL-WRITTEN THANK YOU NOTE
DEMONSTRATES CHARACTER AND CAN LAND YOU THE JOB.

 


One of the most traditional etiquette rules is followed by an average of only 20% of job seekers: writing a thank you note. This simple formality can be the difference between landing the job and heading back to square one.

A well-written thank you note is not only a polite and professional way to let the interviewer(s) know you appreciate their time; it can also be an opportunity to reiterate why you’re the best candidate for the position. In your thank you note, you can answer questions the interviewer asked that you didn’t adequately address, make a personal connection, and more.

Read on for tips to craft a post-interview thank you note:

  1. Collect business cards from every person at the interview. Immediately after the interview, jot quick notes on the back of each one so you can remember one significant thing about each person. This will help you personalize the thank you note. If your memory fails you (interview jitters can do that!) do some research on the company website about those individuals.
  2. Email or snail mail? It’s appropriate to email a thank you note after phone interviews and HR screening interviews. Always send a thank you card in the mail after formal interviews to all the people on the interview committee. The hand-written note showcases your writing and demonstrates extra effort. Plus, it’s classy.
  3. When should I send it? Always send a thank you by email with a few hours of the interview. Hand-written thank you cards should be mailed within 24 hours. If you miss these recommended windows, don’t fret. A late thank you is better than none at all.
  4. Show your value. Go beyond thanking the interviewer(s) for their time. Provide additional value by giving a few more details why they should hire you. This is also an appropriate opportunity to re-address a question you aren’t satisfied with how you answered, or add a point you wish you’d mentioned.
  5. Make a connection. Remember those business cards with your notes on the back? Use that information to make a personal and relevant connection in your thank you note. One or two sentences are sufficient. This will distinguish your message from the typical, generic thank you and show you pay attention to the details.

Remember, even if you don’t get the job, a quality thank you note will help the organization remember you. They may keep you in mind for future openings or refer your name to one of their professional contacts. Taking the time and making the effort to write a thank you note always pays off!

 

Good things Come in Threes...stayed tuned for Communication tip #2 and #3 in our series!