How to Write a Great "Thank You" Note After an Interview
I grew up in the south where it is custom to write a thank you note for the thank you note you just received. Thank you notes are in my blood and if you’ve invited me to stay in your home, sent me a trinket or mailed me a thoughtful article you knew I’d enjoy, you better believe you will be receiving a timely thank you note. But thank you notes aren’t just a southern gesture of gratitude. They are a vital part of the interview process and can be the deciding factor on whether you you receive a job offer or not.
After being in the recruiting world for close to a decade and receiving thousands of candidate thank you notes, here is a list of what makes a thank you note stand out.
- It's an email form. As much as I love a good hand-written note from a friend, when it comes from a candidate it is tough to respond to and to search for if I need it for reference if its not in my email.
- It's timely. When it comes to thank you notes, there is a 24 hour hour rule. I usually suggest sending a quick note once you get home from your interview and the context of your conversation is still fresh.
- It's personal. You recruiter or hiring manager isn’t just the person who sat across from you in an interview. I always try to bring my whole self to work and will make a point to try to bring up some easy topics that aren’t related to the job, like favorite workouts, college sports or pets. When a candidate throws in a "Go Noles," I know they were actually engaged in our conversation.
- It reiterates why a candidate is interested in the position and what they can bring to the table. Always bring a notebook and pen (preferably one that you didn’t pick up from a random hotel or bank) with you and make sure you jot down a few things you can reference in your thank you note. If possible, include any follow up solutions for a problem you discussed during your interview. For example, the last time I interviewed for a job, our CEO said there was an issue with the office always being too quite, so I included a link to one of my favorite office playlists from Spotify. You could also include a link to a relevant podcast or article that is on a subject you discussed.
- It is important to thank your interviewer for their time for my time. It can be tough to make time for an interview and it is always appreciated it when a candidate recognizes that.
Thank you for taking the time to read this post. :)