In the season of giving thanks, job seekers who want to do their best would do well to remember the importance of the thank-you note. Business Insider’s managing editor cites failure to send a thank you e-mail as the top mistake made by people she interviews. I’m not surprised: in one survey, only 67 percent of job seekers reported that they always send thank-you notes after interviews.
While the high-level executives who work with JBK typically do better, we still come across otherwise impressive candidates who lose out on a job by skipping or delaying this simple step. Earlier this year I got up at 5 a.m. and drove about 45 miles to take a candidate to breakfast. She waited more than 48 hours to thank me for my time and show me that she was really interested in the position. I am a complete believer that candidates must show they are really passionate about what they do and want to work for the company. To me, this person’s actions say that she’s probably not going to succeed in an organization that prioritizes treating people with respect.
A simple, sincere note makes a big difference. One survey showed that 91 percent of hiring managers like being thanked by promising job candidates. And, while e-mail is fine and also fast, sending a handwritten note sets you apart. The New York Times reports that the handwritten thank-you may be making a comeback. That would be a great step in restoring a culture of civility to a world that sorely needs it.