Middlebury

 

Thank-You Notes

 

Q: When is it OK to send an email thank-you note?
A. If your interviewer has given you his/her business card and it has an email address on it, then it's OK to send your thank-you that way. If you have any doubts, though, you're always safe sending a hard copy letter.

Q: I interviewed with several people in one day. Do I send thank-you notes to each person?
A. Yes. It's preferable for you to note a particular item that was discussed in the interview. Always send hard copy notes and personalized e-mails to individuals. If, however, you are e-mailing and nothing stands out from any of the conversations, you may send one e-mail to the entire group but you should mention them all by name. If your group interview was organized or chaired by one person, send the thank-you note to that person and reference the other interviewers' names.

Q: If I am emailing should I "sign" my name in a script font to mimic a signature?
A. No. Simply type your name.

QCan I ask for feedback on how my interview went, maybe incorporated into the thank you note?
A:  No, not really. Unfortunately it is not standard practice for employers to discuss how you performed during the interview, either positive or negative. If you’re looking for feedback about how well you interview, you’re encouraged to sign up for a mock interview with an adviser in CCI.  We also suggest that after you leave the interview, you take some time, 5 minutes even, to reflect and do a quick analysis of how things went.  Ask yourself, “What went well?”, “What questions really stumped me?”.  By thinking about your performance, and maybe even writing it down in a journal and keeping track of these thoughts in an organized way, you’ll be better prepared for the next interview.

Sample E-mail Note (after an interview)

Dear Mr. Natural:

Thank you very much for interviewing me yesterday for the position of Program Coordinator. I enjoyed meeting you and learning more about the mission of the Oakdale Outdoor Education Center.

After talking with your staff and visiting the excellent facilities at Oakdale, I am eager to reaffirm my interest in the position. I think my education in environmental studies and previous experience leading environmental education programs fit nicely with the job requirements you outlined. The potential to contribute to Oakdale's three-part mission of awareness, action, and research is very exciting to me.

Again, thank you for interviewing me and giving me the chance to learn more about the work of Oakdale Outdoor Education Center. If I can provide you with any additional information, please do not hesitate to respond to this email or call me at 802-443-0023. I look forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely,
Brenda Frankly

Sample Hard-copy Note (after an interview)

(Should be sent on 8 1/2"x11" size paper):

 

Middlebury College Box 0001
Middlebury, VT 05753
March 20, 2010
(4 returns)
Mr. Brendan Natural, Program Director
Oakdale Outdoor Education Center
Box 4000
Slippery Sands, PA 00006

Dear Mr. Natural:

Thank you very much for interviewing me yesterday for the position of Program Coordinator. I enjoyed meeting you and learning more about the mission of the Oakdale Outdoor Education Center.

After talking with your staff and visiting the impressive facilities at Oakdale, I am eager to reaffirm my interest in the position. I think my education in environmental studies and previous experience leading environmental education programs fit closely with the job requirements you outlined. The potential to contribute to Oakdale's three-part mission of awareness, action, and research is very exciting to me.

Again, thank you for interviewing me and providing me the opportunity to learn more about the work of Oakdale Outdoor Education Center. If I can provide you with any additional information, please do not hesitate to call me at 802-443-0023 or email me at bfrankly@middlebury.edu. I look forward to hearing from you.

 

Sincerely,

Brenda Frankly

Sample E-mail Note (after a networking conversation)

Dear Ms. Walter:

Thank you so much for your generosity of time and information yesterday. Your assistance in matching my skills and interests to future possibilities has given me a much broader perspective for my search.

I am particularly interested in following up on your suggestion about biomechanical opportunities and will be contacting George Smith later today.

Again, thank you so much for your help and I will let you know how everything turns out.

All the best,
Joe Smith

The Power of a Simple Thank-You Note

by Peter Vogt

1. In sending a thank-you note, you show your interviewer common courtesy and respect.
Unfortunately in our busy and often impolite world, we simply don't acknowledge each other's time, efforts and commitments. So in sending a thank-you note, you tell your interviewer in no uncertain terms that you appreciate the time he or she has given you. After all, he or she had to give up part or all of the day to be with you, and expend effort learning more about you and what you have to offer.

2. So few job applicants send thank-you notes that you automatically stand out if you do.
It's shocking, but the majority of job applicants fail to send thank-you notes after their interviews. Why? Who knows? But the bottom line is that you wind up in a position to shine simply by putting forth the effort of sending a note. Strange, but true.

3. A thank-you note gives you an opportunity to reiterate points you made during your interview.
Have you ever left an interview wishing you'd more strongly emphasized a certain skill or experience the employer seemed to be looking for? A thank-you note gives you the chance to do just that. After using the first paragraph of your note to thank your interviewer, you can use a brief second paragraph to touch again upon the key points you made in your interview. You can also use a similar strategy to "clean up" any interview rough spots you might have had -- i.e., to expand upon or clarify responses you felt were weak or shaky.

4. A thank-you note lets you make points you forgot to make in your interview.
Sometimes after an interview, as you walk out to your car, you smack yourself on the forehead and say to yourself, "Why didn't I talk about _____?!" Frustrating? You bet. But you can take care of the problem to some degree in your thank-you note. Again, perhaps in the second paragraph, you can say something to the effect of "After our discussion, it occurred to me that I forgot to tell you about _________."

5. A thank-you note demonstrates your written communication skills.
In receiving and reading your thank-you notes, your interviewer will see firsthand how you handle yourself on paper. You'll be using similar skills every day with the company's potential clients, customers, and vendors -- so the interviewer will be reading carefully to see how you come across in print.