Monday, May 3, 2010

Job Seeker: Remember What Your Mama Taught You

By Cynthia Wilson James

This job tip is one that your mama, grandparent or teacher taught you when you were “knee-high to a grasshopper.” This job tip is as relevant and as overlooked today as it was nearly ten years ago when I presented it to my readers and on-site participants.

What is the tip? The tip is to say “thank you” when someone gives you something you want or does something for you. This job tip sets you apart from the other competitors.

As a corporate recruiter, there were countless applicants who called me almost daily to express their interest in a specific job. Others sent letters outlining their qualifications and requesting interviews.
Once the qualified applicants received an interview, I did not hear from many of the enthusiastic applicants again. The ones who followed up their interview with thank-you calls, cards, or letters stood out from crowd.

Unfortunately, this is still the case on today. Employers receive triple as many letters requesting interviews as they receive thank-you letters, cards or calls. They take notice of applicants who send them.

Your card, call or letter will be especially helpful to you if the employer is trying to decide between you and another candidate. Your card shows that you appreciated the interviewer’s time. And who doesn’t like to hear the words “thank you”?

Before you write a thank you letter, card or email, obtain the correct spelling of the interviewer’s name, regardless of how the simple the name may seem. There are names that may be spelled differently. For example, John Smith could also be spelled John Smyth.

If you are interviewed by more than one person, send a separate correspondence to each person. You may want to include a sentence or two about what each person told you about the job that you found appealing.

If you are interviewed by a panel or group, address the letter of thanks to the person responsible for setting up the committee interview.

Even before you leave the interview, remember to say the words mama taught you, “thank you.”