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Great advice from The Lawyer Whisperer

September 17, 2017
Question

Should a candidate always send a thank you note after a job interview?

answer
Julie Q. Brush

A simple question. And a simple answer: Absolutely. Positively. Always.

But I will also take this opportunity to expand a bit.

The “thank you” is a critical detail to cover in the interview process. And for that matter, in every interaction you have with someone who has done something to help you in some way, shape or form. Don’t view it as an obligation, but as a true expression of your appreciation. Think about it this way: Time is precious and the people with whom you have met took the time away from everything else in their lives to get to know you. In today’s frenetically paced environment, that is indeed a big deal. The thank you should be sent within 24 hours of your interview and email format is fine.

The interview is also a forum to develop and build relationships – and to make an impression. Whether you get this job or not, I’ll bet you dollars to doughnuts you will come across this interviewer again sometime in your career. So, following up with a thank you reinforces that you have follow through and will end the communication on a positive note. The punctuation at the end of a sentence.

Finally, saying “thank you” is one of the most underused and taken for granted phrases out there. Our expression of thanks to another person is very powerful. It demonstrates thoughtfulness and appreciation – and I don’t know a single person out there who doesn’t want or need to be appreciated for their efforts. How often do you say thank you.… to your co-workers, your boss, your secretary, your coffee barista, your friends, your loved ones? To say it and hear it from someone else lifts you in some way. Positive feelings are reinforced and negative feelings can melt away with this simple gesture. I guarantee that if you say it more often, the quality of your relationships – work and personal – will improve. Try it and see if I’m right.

I digress. But it’s my job to digress from time to time to highlight how the dots connect by using these general principles in a positive way throughout all aspects of one’s life. Demonstrating appreciation by saying thank you should be one of the tenets of a solid value system which will carry you through your career.

A simple question. And a simple answer: Absolutely. Positively. Always.

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