Tuesday, July 1, 2014

What Ever Happened to Thank You Notes?

It seems that the practice of sending a Thank You note has gone the way of the dinosaur.  When did it become acceptable to not acknowledge someone's consideration with a brief but appreciative Thank You?  Even Jimmy Fallon sends out weekly Thank You notes.

In most cases it is no longer necessary to send a card enclosed in an envelope with a stamp through the US Postal Service.  You can now send a brief thank you note cost free via email.  I'm actually astounded at the lack of effort when it comes to this courtesy.  Sadly I've come to accept that not every candidate is going to send a Thank You note to me (or a note to be provided to my client) for taking the time to interview them and consider them for employment.  Most consultants are busy interviewing with so many people they frequently forget what client I've even spoken with them about, let alone take the time to shoot over a "Thank You for Your Consideration".  However, I have to say I was a bit taken aback when I scheduled a number of permanent Director level interviews with a CIO and only 1 of the candidates bothered to send a Thank You note to forward to the CIO post interview.  Oddly, around the same time I also had scheduled 3 Executive Assistant interviews with a CIO and all 3 took the time to send a Thank You note to forward along to the client.  I'm not sure what the dichotomy is here, but you'd think the people interviewing for a $175,000 a year job would also want to take a moment to thank the CIO for his time and consideration.

A post interview Thank You note doesn't have to be long and complicated, in fact it should be just the opposite.  It should simply state your appreciation for the person's time, your continued interest in the role and your level of anticipation in hearing about the next step in the interview process.  A Thank You note should not be: pushy, sound like a desperate attempt to get the job, go on and on about why you're the best fit for the position or include poor grammar, punctuation or spelling. 

I can tell you from experience that if a decision maker is strongly considering 2 or 3 candidates for the same role, the person that took the time to acknowledge their appreciation for the interview and their continued interest in the role through a Thank You note will almost always come out on top.

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