Photo by Brian Mitchell
Forbes.com recently wrote
about how important it is
to follow up an interview
with a thank you note.
“Thank-you letters are a marketing tool just like your résumé,” says Wendy Enelow, author of The $100,000+ Job Interview: How to Nail the Interview and Get the Offer. “You’re writing the thank-you to further your candidacy.”
What NOT to Say
Forbes.com cautions, “Never say something like, ‘I don’t know if I made that point clear. Here’s what I meant…’ Instead, state your points without hesitation…Also, instead of saying, ‘I think I’d be perfect for the job,’ write, “I really appreciated meeting you and the time you spent with me. I’m really excited about the position.”
Snail or Email? Hand Written or Typed?
The article discusses the all important topic: email or snail mail? If it’s a snail, should it be hand written or typed?
I like to tell my clients that a snail mail note, sent immediately after the interview, is key. It’s okay to send a well thought out email, but following up with a hand delivered or snail mailed (as in, with an actual stamp) note helps make it more likely that your note (or notes, if there were multiple interviewers) will actually be seen and possibly added to your file.
I’m also a big fan of a typed note. I think that it is possible in a typed note to ensure that what you write is actually reviewed. The note is a great opportunity for you to indicate your strong interest in the job and to review issues from the interview.
The article quotes Cynthia Shapiro, a former recruiter and author of What Does Somebody Have to Do to Get a Job Around Here?, as advocating for a hand-written note: “People get 500 emails a day. Writing an old-fashioned note is so rare today and will stand out.” So, if you are a big fan of hand-written correspondence, be sure to write the same type of in-depth letter that you might write if you typed it. Writing a quick, “Thank you for interviewing me” on a note card probably isn’t going to win you many points.
So, thank the interviewer (with a separate and personalized note to each), re-emphasize where your skills intersect with their needs and how you can solve their problems. Remind them why you are best for the job and re-express your strong interest. Proof and double-proof your note for typos or errors and recognize that by sending a note, you are helping yourself stand above the rest of the candidates who are too busy to follow through!