Writing the most effective interview thank you can make the difference between furthering your career with a great job and not getting hired by competitive firms with the best salaries and benefits packages. Sending job interview thank you letters or even cards is now almost standard for some industries. The novelty of sending a thank you note may no longer be enough to make you stand out from the crowd.
Stay ahead of the curve and follow up your interview by sending the most effective thank you.Here is a typical job interview thank you letter:
Dear John Smith:
I enjoyed this afternoon’s discussion of the managerial position you want to fill. I was pleased to discover that my advanced degree is certainly an asset. I was also impressed by the team spirit among the employees I met. Thanks so much for your time and the genial interview.
First, we’ll talk about what’s good about this note.
- It is written (and we can assume mailed) on the same day of the interview.
- It mentions something specific that happened in the interview–meeting some of the employees.
What’s not so great about this thank you letter:
- It does not mention the specific job title. There may be more than one managerial position to fill. Also, remembering the exact title of the position shows an attention to detail.
- It implies, but does not specifically state that you are still interested in the position.
- It does not use the most powerful gratitude phrase in the English language even once, “thank you.”
Why You Cannot Afford to Miss Out
on the Powerful Use of the Word You
Language studies at Yale, Duke and University of California have confirmed that “you” is one of the twelve most persuasive words in the English language. “You” is in the ranks with words like “money” “easy,” “love” “Proven” “Results”, and “Guarantee” for persuasive effect. Most people, including the author of the above letter, do not make use of this valuable idea.
The body of the above letter is 49 words. The word “I” is used four times. The word you is used once. The writer never even used one of the most powerful phrases in the world, “Thank You.”
Your resume, cover letter, and the interview contains all the “I” you need. The thank you letter is your chance to show your gratitude and should be all about your future boss and employer.
Using the word “you” more than I will make your job interview thank you letter sound sincere and less like an obligatory interview follow up.
Don’t make this mistake.
Many people are under the misconception that when sending the thank you letter after an interview they should remind a potential employer about your skills. That is what your resume and interview is for. If you feel like you need to plug yourself more then sharpen your interview skills and resume. That’s what those tools are for.
Increase the Odds You Will Be Remembered After the Job Interview
A well written, flattering job interview thank you letter that is all about your future boss and company will distinguish you from the pile. The power of the word “you” is so strong that it can cause an employer to re-think and look through the stack of resumes and interview notes.
- Unify your job search tools. Use the same slightly unusual, but professional, high-quality paper for your resume, envelopes, cover letter and thank you note. It provides consistency in your branding. Make it a subtle such as a slightly rose-colored tinted paper, or off-white or you initials tastefully printed in the corner or on the bottom of the page. Make sure not to get ridiculously fancy or gaudy. Keep it tasteful and subtle.
- Show your gratitude for the interview and thank your interviewers in person.
- Mention something very specific that is like to have only happened in your interview, but in a complimentary way. Ex. Your poise and humor in handling the spilling plant incident was particularly impressive.
Or if you discussed an off-topic shared interest mention it in the thank you. Ex. Your great choice in football teams is an added bonus. Go Dolphins!)
Another highly effective tip: If there is a secretary or assistant around when you exit, ask for the correct spellings of all the names of the people you interviewed with and met. Mention that you need it to send thank you notes . Before you leave, make it a point to get HIS or HER name and say thanks. Then send them a note.
The assistant opens the mail and will make sure it is known who sent the thank yous. If he or she is not around, telephone. You need the correct spellings and names of each person you interviewed with. Each person gets his own uniquely worded thank you letter.
Remember: Your job interview thank you letter or thank you card is the last thing, the powers that be will see before they make a decision. Sending a confident, complimentary and grateful note of thanks is an excellent final impression.
Your job interview thank you letter will demonstrate your level of professionalism and have a high emotional value that will aid in not only getting you hired, but in your salary negotiation.
People enjoy being appreciated and would rather hire somebody that costs more money who they will enjoy working with over somebody cheap who is not going to make them feel as appreciated.
Most positions have a salary range. Every move you make determines if you will get the job offer and how much your potential employer will pay for you.
Making the most of your job interview thank letter can literally earn you thousands of dollars.
Now when you get the job. Keep the thank yous coming. (See workplace thank you)