Have you ever felt frustrated after an interview? Sure you have! I know you have mentally gone over your interview answers and you remember what you DID NOT say. You also realized you missed an opportunity to REINFORCE your candidacy. This is why you would write a strategic Thank You letter, which will position you back in the “game”.
The problem with most Thank You letters is they are usually prepared as just a nice gesture. They are not strategic enough to add another dimension to your candidacy. In other words, you must exploit your Thank You opportunity as a last marketing effort in order to gain a competitive advantage over other qualified candidates. Here are a few things you can perform to take advantage of this follow-up opportunity. Remember that after the interview you have “insider” information that you did not have prior to the interview — don’t waste it.
When Your Interviewer Shared a Concern: If during the interview process, you were told that the perfect candidate must meet XYZ and, unfortunately, you were forced to discus your weakness in one of these areas — then you must to talk about this again. Reiterate why this would not be a problem, and, in fact, promote how despite this “weakness” you are the PERFECT candidate.
When You Did Not Say What You Should Have Said: At times, we reflect and realize where we failed. This is your opportunity! Bring up the topic again and elaborate further.
When You Think You Sensed Apprehension: This is a bit risky because you could be wrong. Yet, what is life if not risky? If you are very good at perceiving and ascertaining needs (and what medical professional isn’t, right?) and you KNOW you identified a problem, “smooth” it out! Please do not say you think the interviewer did not understand….You NEVER want to convey you assume to know what others think but you can discuss what YOU failed to communicate. You can say you would like to clarify a point you wished you had driven home more strongly.
When You Really Just Want To Say Thank You: There are times when you were FANTASTIC during an interview and you sincerely just want to say thanks! Nevertheless, you don’t know how your competition performed and you are not privy as to what kind of Thank You letter they are preparing. So, in this case, thank them but fortify your candidacy even further, you could:
- Accentuate three of your top qualification as discussed during the interview. Now you have more information than you did prior to the interview–put it to work for you! Connect your qualifications/skills with employer needs expressed during the interview.
- Sell them again on the bottom-line goal they need to achieve via your employment. Seal the deal by promising to deliver.
Keep the thank you letter short and to the point; while a sales tool, it does not have to be as extensive as your resume or cover letter. Remember, the entire job search process is a marketing effort; use every tool and maximize every opportunity.