Should you or shouldn’t you write a thank you note, email, or letter following a job interview?
After many years of recruiting, I recently received the best interview thank letter you ever. If you write as well as this candidate does, you’re genuinely appreciative, and you’re a great fit, then absolutely send a thank you!
The Best Interview Thank You
Want some ideas? Read this letter and the analysis that follows:
Thank you for taking the time to speak with me regarding the [Job Title] position at the [Hiring Company]. It sounds like a wonderful opportunity both in terms of the organization and the position. I have a lot to offer [Hiring Company] as [Job Title], but also in other areas as needed.
My broad experience in [Hiring Company’s Industry] management would be a strong addition to the team currently in place. I understand the needs of my colleagues and see the [Job Title] role as one that requires a service-oriented mentality. I want to be helpful when I can but also have the judgment to know when to step back.
I also think I could be helpful to [Hiring Manager]. Often in my career I have been asked to add challenging projects to my portfolio while keeping up with my daily responsibilities.
I am not shy about sharing my ideas or thoughts, but do so in a tactful and diplomatic manner. I think a good indicator of that was when I was invited by the [Previous Employer] Board of Directors to be a voting member of the Board Search Committee for a new CEO in 2006. I was able to gain the respect of a Board that had many members who were prominent in politics, business, and technology.
Finally, as a [Credential], I have kept up with the educational requirements necessary to maintain my [Credential] license. I’m an expert in [Industry] [Functional Area of Expertise] matters and have detailed knowledge of [Functional Area of Expertise] law and state regulations regarding [Industry]. I have experience managing [Business Activity], both as a [One Side of the Transaction] and as a [The other Side of the Transaction] in the international realm.
Most of all, I have a strong belief in the mission of [Hiring Company]. I have spent my career in [Industry] and feel my personal belief system and my strong [Industry] management skills make me an ideal candidate for this position.
Donna, I would relish the opportunity to have further discussions with you where we drill down into the specifics of the position. Thank you once again for your time and for considering me for this position.
Paragraph 1: The candidate thanked me and then, indirectly, told me what he was going to tell me.
Paragraph 2: He described his on-point industry experience, his service orientation, and his willingness and ability to take on additional responsibility without stepping on toes.
Paragraph 3: He discussed his willingness to contribute ideas and provided evidence of the respect his stakeholders have had for him.
Paragraph 4: He described his subject matter expertise and showed that he can bring multiple perspectives to the position.
Paragraph 5: He discussed his fundamental cultural fit for the job.
Paragraph 6: He reiterated his interest in the opportunity and thanked me again.
In addition, the letter provided information on a couple of points we had not covered in our interview and elaborated a bit on items we had discussed.
The letter came via email several hours after we had completed our interview. I liked it so much that I called him to tell him that it was the best interview thank you letter I had ever received. I have never, in all my years of recruiting, made a call like that.
Why Did I Like It?
I felt genuinely thanked, it provided useful new information, and it made me believe that he could both do the job and be a wonderful colleague. And he didn’t make this interview thank you letter mistake. Because of that, I asked him if I could share a redacted copy of his letter here to help job seekers with one of the biggest writing challenges ever.
The Power of Saying Thank You
Lest you doubt the impact of a sincere interview thank you letter, watch this video based on research by Adam Grant, Professor at the Wharton School:
I predict you will be upping the level of your thank you game!
You Might Also Like
This post shares another top notch sample thank you and discusses how you can position yourself during the interview to be able to write a great interview thank you.
I write executive resumes and LinkedIn profiles. Save time. Get hired. Email me at email@example.com for more information.
Updated July 2017
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