Post-Interview: Thank You Notes
There is so much emphasis on acing one’s interviews, responding expertly to commonly asked questions, dressing appropriately, speaking to one’s strengths without merely summarizing one’s resume. Despite all this attention paid to the interview itself, there is an important post-interview step that many people forget: the thank you note.
Sending thank you notes might seem like an antiquated tradition, something from your parent’s time, and yet there is still no better way to reinforce yourself as a positive candidate than thanking your interviewers for giving you a chance to demonstrate all the reasons you’re a great fit for a job. Scott Singer provides a few helpful tips on writing thank you notes in his article “The Dos and Don’ts of Post-Interview ‘Thank You’ Notes.” Here are our favorite points:
- Be prompt and brief. Thank you notes should be delivered no later than the morning after an interview, and they should only contain a few sentences. This is not your opportunity to gush lavishly about the company or perhaps even your individual interviewers. It is your chance to show, once more, your interest and appreciation in this particular job. Singer specifically recommends referencing memorable aspect of the interview to show you were paying attention and engaged in the discussion.
- Send it by email. Though handwritten notes would make you stand out that much more, it takes too long to send by post. You could take it back to the company in person, but then you risk awkwardly running into your interviewers (perhaps as they are heading into or leaving another interview). Email is quick, efficient, and will still give the full “thank-you note” effect.
- Don’t forget anyone. If you met with multiple people, there should be a thank- you addressed to everyone. Singer even suggests including those who possibly phone screened with you or scheduled your interview. Be all-inclusive so as not to leave anyone out.
Post-interview thank-you notes are not a thing of the past, and it could even determine whether you land the job or not (if other interviewees write notes and you don’t, that reflects poorly).