As a job seeker, you're a salesperson. It therefore stands to reason that common sales techniques can help you close the deal on your job hunt.
For instance, sending a thank-you note after an interview is common sense--but surprisingly few people do it. As a prospective employee, you're looking for every possible means to distinguish yourself. Not only is the thank-you note good manners, it also:
- Reinforces you in the interviewer's mind.
- Gives you another chance to underscore your interest in and suitability for the position.
- Provides an opportunity to showcase your writing skills.
- Shows that you pay attention to detail.
- Allows you to submit any additional information you may have forgotten to mention or bring with you to the interview.
At the end of the interview, ask when you can expect a decision. If that time period has come and gone, a phone call to the person who coordinated your interview is acceptable. If several weeks pass, and you still don't hear anything, phone again. Persistence--not peskiness--pays off.
Tips for writing thank-you letters
A thank you letter and note should always reflect your personal style and the circumstances. In general, when you write the letter:
- State your appreciation.
- Express your interest in employment.
- Summarize your qualifications.
- Provide any pertinent information that you might not have provided in the interview.
- Add a final "thank you" and indicate if you plan to contact that person again and when.
- Here are some more tips to keep in mind:
- Always address the letter to a specific person (instead of "Accounting Manager" for example).
- If you were interviewed by more than one person, either send a separate letter or note to each person or send a single letter to a key person for distribution. When sending more than one letter, tailor the message to each recipient.
- Send the letter or note as soon after the contact as possible, preferably the same day.
- Typically, you would type a letter and handwrite a note. Make sure that your handwriting is clear and legible.
- Even if you were turned down for the job, use the thank-you letter to express your appreciation for being considered and your interest in future opportunities.