Thank You Notes That Please

Once upon a time (this is a true story!), a job candidate felt that a personal interview had gone exceptionally well. He expected an employment offer immediately.

After two weeks, however, no offer was forthcoming, and the candidate’s enthusiasm turned to dismay. Only then, when he was mentally reviewing (for the hundredth time) everything that had been said — and done — before, during, and after the interview — did he remember that he hadn’t sent a thank you note.

Hastening to correct the error, he express mailed a letter to the employer who, it happened, had never before received such a communication. The candidate’s thoughtfulness so impressed the employer that she phoned him and made the offer on the spot.

Don’t let that candidate be you!

It’s essential to send a thank you letter, whether or not you are interested in a given position. A letter or, at least, a note:

  • Keeps the door open for future contact.
  • Is a polite way to let the company know where you stand just as quickly as you would like to know their thoughts.
  • Sets you apart from less conscientious candidates and proves you are caring as well as courteous.
  • Is the perfect venue to reinforce your enthusiasm for the job and the company.
  • Is the logical place to thumbnail, again, your qualifications and to summarize the strengths you can bring to the position.
  • Reminds a hiring manager that he or she needs to respond to you.

To whom and what form:

Determining where to send your letter shouldn’t be difficult. But wait a minute! Is one letter enough? The hiring manager will, of course, be the principal recipient.

But did you consider these key players:

  • The human resources staff who set up the appointment and made travel arrangements?
  • A particular secretary or receptionist who contributed to your well-being during the interview process?

Let them know you appreciated their help!

A thank you may be hand written on quality stationery and snail or express mailed. It may be word processed and faxed.

Avoid e-mail unless the employer has given you his or her personal e-mail address AND has indicated that messages are checked frequently.

What to say:

Deciding what to say isn’t as difficult as saying it succinctly – and sincerely. Thank the employer for the interview, express your interest in the position, and clarify points that might have gotten short shrift during your meeting.

Don’t neglect to summarize why you are right for the job, personally (e.g., you want to live in that part of the country) as well as professionally.

While fairly simple and fun to write, thank you letters are essential to any job search. The right letter could cinch the offer.

Whether you’re a candidate or a client, we’d love to hear from you!