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How To Write the Perfect Thank You Email After Your Job Interview

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How To Write the Perfect Thank You Email After Your Job Interview

A few things are helpful for a successful job interview: a firm handshake, a winning smile, confidence, and poise. There is also one facet that is often forgotten but just as important for after the interview is over: A Thank You email. While it is a small thing, it can often mean the difference between making a lasting impression that lands you a job or losing the opportunity forever. To make sure your Thank You email lands you in the winners circle, here’s the do’s and don’ts of writing one.

ABC: Always Be Correct

Do:

  • Use proper grammar, punctuation, and spelling.
  • Spell your interviewer’s name correctly

Just like your cover letter and resume, this should reflect a professional, courteous tone and show that you know what you are doing. No matter what the job entails, an employer wants to know that you take everything you do seriously. By crafting an intelligent letter that shows you know how to spell and where to put a period says that you respect them, their company, and the job.

Don’t:

  • Write casually
  • Use slang, colloquialisms, or any obscenities
  • Address the letter “To Whom it May Concern”

Even if you connected instantly with the person who interviewed you and the two of you just shot the breeze like old chums or drinking buddies, your Thank You email should not act like they are your pal. This is still a person who is to be respected. A letter that is too casual says you aren’t taking the job seriously. Even worse, if you behave as if you have no idea who they are their opinion of you will rapidly cool.

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Get Personal

Do:

  • Mention a point of the interview that you enjoyed.
  • Use the interviewer’s name and title.

A person likes to feel that they made an impression. As such, they want to know what you thought after you have had time to ruminate on the interview. While you don’t want to be overly familiar, you do want to make sure they recall who you are and show them you went above and beyond in writing a personal message to them.

Don’t:

  • Be too cold.
  • Give them advice or complaints.
  • Give them a form email.

While you should be telling them that you enjoyed meeting with them and showing that you have reflected on the company and how you might better fit into the job, don’t give any hint that you didn’t like them, the company, or the position. You want no negative comments. You want to help mold their sense of you by presenting yourself as positive, happy, and a good listener. Stay professional, but don’t be distant or icy.

Be Professional

Do:

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  • Keep it brief.
  • Make your tone mature.
  • Express your enthusiasm.

Remember first and foremost that this person is busy. You are writing to thank them for their time, not take up more of it. This should read like professional correspondence that makes your point and then signs off. Be excited but don’t gush or wax rhapsodic about how much you love their company. It sounds insincere.

Don’t:

  • Ramble.
  • Disclose too much about yourself.
  • Lie.

You should be highlighting the best points of the interview but don’t slather the letter in effusive kindness. Your emotional content should be limited to being pleased to have met them, glad for the opportunity, and hope to hear from them in the future. They don’t need your life story, they don’t want to hear a tale you think is prevalent, and they don’t want to be buttered up. Simple, genial, and straightforward is all that is needed.

Put the Ball in Their Court

Do:

  • Include a call to action on their part.
  • Restate your interest in the job.
  • Ensure they have your contact information.

While you are thanking them, part of the point of a Thank You email is to make it clear that action on their part is now required. You should be assertive, though not aggressive, in saying you look forward to speaking with them in the future or asking them to contact you when they have reached a decision. Include your phone number and email address so there is no reason they could possibly have for not reaching you.

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Don’t:

  • Just say “Thank you.”
  • Close the matter.

A Thank You email should not be conclusive. You want them to feel as if it is their move. If you just end your letter with “Thank you for your time” you make the matter sound closed. Therefore they can feel good as they throw your letter away. Leave the end as open as possible with a tone that anticipates a reply from them.

Thank Everyone

Do:

  • Thank anyone who interviewed with you.
  • Thank people even if they rejected you.

If you have multiple interviews with various people within a company, send a “Thank You” email to all of them. A mistake that many applicants make is to only thank the top boss or the highest ranking person in the office who spoke with them. This shows you aren’t a team player. Also, showing courtesy to someone – even if they turned you down at the end of the interview – shows them you can take a hit without losing class. It will keep you in their mind for future positions or other people they know who might need your skills.

Don’t

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  • Leave anyone out.

When it comes to giving thanks, no one should be forgotten. If you have the chance to thank the secretary who took you into the meeting, do it. People in a company who seem small often wield immense power and influence. If you can make them remember you, like you, and consider you an enjoyable person, your resume is much less likely to be forgotten.

Even if things didn’t go well, you can always recover from a bad job interview with a great Thank You email.

Featured photo credit: Infrogmation of New Orleans via upload.wikimedia.org

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Last Updated on August 25, 2021

Why Personal Branding Is Important to Your Career

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Why Personal Branding Is Important to Your Career

As a recruiter, I have met and interviewed hundreds of candidates who have no idea who they are.

Without a personal brand, candidates struggle to answer the question: “tell me about yourself—who are you?” They have no idea about who they are, what their strengths are, and how they can add value to the company. They present their CV’s believing that their CV is the key to their career success. In some ways, your CV still has its use. However, in today’s job market, you need more than a CV to stand out in a crowd.

According to Celinne Da Costa:[1]

“Personal brand is essentially your golden ticket to networking with the right people, getting hired for a dream job, or building an influential business.” She believes that “a strong personal brand allows you to stand out in an oversaturated marketplace by exposing desired audiences to your vision, skillset, and personality in a way that is strategically aligned with your career goals.”

A personal brand opens up your world to so many more career opportunities that you would never have been exposed to with just your CV.

What Is Your Personal Brand?

“Personal branding is how you distinctively market your uniqueness.” —Bernard Kelvin Clive

Today, the job market is very competitive and tough. Having a great CV will only let you go so far because everyone has a CV, but no one else has your distinct personal brand! It is your personal brand that differentiates you from everyone else and that is what people buy—you.

Your personal brand is your mark on the world. It is how people you interact with and the world see you. It is your legacy—it is more important than a business brand because your personal brand lasts forever.

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I have coached people who have very successful careers, and they come to me because they have suddenly found that they are not getting the opportunities or having the conversations that would them to their next role. They are having what I call a “career meltdown,” all because they have no personal brand.

A personal brand helps you become conscious of your differences and your uniqueness. It allows you to position yourself in a way that makes you stand out from the pack, especially among other potential job applicants.

Don’t get me wrong, having a great CV and a great LinkedIn profile is important. However, there are a few steps that you have to take to have a CV and LinkedIn profile that is aligned to who you are, the value you offer to the market, and the personal guarantee that you deliver results.

Building your personal brand is about strategically, creatively, and professionally presenting what makes you, you. Knowing who you are and the value you bring to the table enables you to be more informed, agile, and adaptable to the changing dynamic world of work. This is how you can avoid having a series of career meltdowns.

Your Personal Brand Is Essential for Your Career Success

In her article, Why Personal Branding Is More Important Than Ever, Caroline Castrillon outlines key reasons why a personal brand is essential for career success.

According to Castrillon,[2]

“One reason is that it is more popular for recruiters to use social media during the interview process. According to a 2018 CareerBuilder survey, 70% of employers use social media to screen candidates during the hiring process, and 43% of employers use social media to check on current employees.”

The first thing I do as a recruiter when I want to check out a candidate or coaching client is to look them up on LinkedIn or other social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Your digital footprint is the window that highlights to the world who you are. When you have no control over how you want to be seen, you are making a big mistake because you are leaving it up to someone else to make a judgment for you as to who you are.

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As Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, once said, “Your brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room.”

In her book, Becoming, Michelle Obama writes about the importance of having a personal brand and her journey to defining her personal brand. She wrote that:

“if you don’t get out there and define yourself, you’ll be quickly and inaccurately defined by others.”

When you have a personal brand, you are in control. You know exactly what people will say about you when you leave the room.

The magic of a personal brand is that gives you control over how you want to be seen in the world. Your confidence and self-belief enable you to leverage opportunities and make informed decisions about your career and your future. You no longer experience the frustrations of a career meltdown or being at a crossroads not knowing what to do next with your career or your life. With a personal brand, you have focus, clarity, and a strategy to move forward toward future success.

Creating your personal brand does not happen overnight. It takes a lot of work and self-reflection. You will be expected to step outside of your comfort zone not once, but many times.

The good news is that the more time you spend outside of your comfort zone, the more you will like being there. Being outside of your comfort zone is where you can test the viability of and fine-tune your personal brand.

5 Key Steps to Creating Your Personal Brand

These five steps will help you create a personal brand that will deliver you the results you desire with your career and in life.

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1. Set Your Personal Goals

What is it that you want to do in the next five years? What will your future self be doing in the next five to ten years? What is important to you? If you can answer these questions, then you are on the right path. If not, then you have to start thinking about them.

2. Create Your Unique Value Proposition

Create your unique value proposition by asking yourself these four questions:

  1. What are your personality features? What benefit do you offer people?
  2. Who are you and why do people enjoy working with you?
  3. What do you do and what do people want you to do for them? How do you solve their problems?
  4. What makes you different from others like you?

The answers to these questions will give you the information you need to create your professional story, which is the key step to creating your personal brand.

3. Write Your Professional Story

Knowing who you are, what you want, and the unique value you offer is essential to you creating your professional story. People remember stories. Your personal story incorporates your value proposition and tells people who you are and what makes you unique. This is what people will remember about you.

4. Determine Which Platforms Will Support Your Personal Brand

Decide which social media accounts and online platforms will best represent your brand and allow you to share your voice. In a professional capacity, having a LinkedIn profile and a CV that reflects your brand is key to your positioning in relation to role opportunities. People will be connecting with you because they will like the story you are telling.

5. Become Recognized for Sharing Your Knowledge and Expertise

A great way for you to promote yourself is by sharing knowledge and helping others. This is where you prove you know your stuff and you gain exposure for doing so. You can do this through social media, writing, commenting, video, joining professional groups, networking, etc. Find your own style and uniqueness and use it to attract clients, the opportunities, or the jobs you desire.

The importance of having a personal brand is not going to go away. In fact, it is the only way where you can stand out and be unique in a complex changing world of work. If you don’t have a personal brand, someone will do it for you. If you let this happen, you have no control and you may not like the story they create.

Standing out from others takes time and investment. Most people cannot make the change by themselves, and this is where engaging a personal brand coach is a viable option to consider.

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As a personal brand coach, working with my clients to create their personal brand is my passion. I love the fact that we can work together to create a personal story that defines exactly what people will say when you leave the room.

Other People’s Stories

Listening to other people’s stories is a great way to learn. In his article, 7 TED Talks About Personal Branding, Rafael Dos Santos presents the best Ted Talks where speakers share their stories about the “why,” “what,” and “how” of personal branding.((GuidedPR: 7 TED Talks About Personal Branding))

Take some time out to listen to these speakers sharing their stories and thoughts about personal branding. You will definitely learn so much about how you can start your journey of defining yourself and taking control of your professional and personal life.

Your personal brand, without a doubt, is your secret weapon to your career success. As Michelle Obama said,

“your story is what you have, what you will always have. It is something to own.”

So, go own your story. Go on the journey to create your personal brand that defines who you are, highlights your uniqueness, and the value you offer to the world.

Featured photo credit: Austin Distel via unsplash.com

Reference

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