A well-written thank-you note is an essential element of any job search tool kit, and if you're doing things right, you should be sending these out to contacts, recruiters, interviewers and mentors on a fairly regular basis. So how can you make sure your thank-notes are warm and genuine, but also short, simple, and frequent? Here are five moves that can help.
The Elements of an Excellent Thank-You Note
Take these tips into consideration, and your your thank-you note will be read and remembered.
1. Punctuality. Effective thank you notes are well timed. The most impressive and sincere notes are the ones that appear in the recipient's email or snail mail inbox within two days.
2. Flow. An effective thank you-note never sounds obligatory, or feels like an item crossed off a to-do list. The words and sentences of your note should come from the heart, and should seem easy, relaxed, and spontaneous.
3. Organization. In the first line, describe the specific act of kindness in question. As in "I just wanted to thank you for your favor/meeting/conversation." Follow this by acknowledging any sacrifices of time or resources made by the giver. Then offer a few details that show what this favor means to you, or how it will help you take your career where you'd like it to go. Close your letter by telling your reader that you'll keep him or her informed as your situation progresses.
4. Reciprocity. It never hurts to remind your reader that generosity is a two-way street, and if you have anything to offer in return for their favor, now is the time to mention it. As in: "The next time you visit Atlanta, please let my wife and I take you to dinner," or "If you ever need (fill in the blank), please don't hesitate to let me know."
5. A personal touch. A simple word or statement that reveals a personal connection can bring a thank-you note to life. Even two minutes of small talk can offer a bit of information about the person's life or interests, and your thank-you note is a perfectly appropriate place to refer to this detail and demonstrate that you know how to listen.
Thank-You Notes Support an Effective Resume
Thank-you notes are important, but the most important item your job search will always be a strong resume. Visit MyPerfectResume for a resume builder that will turn you into the number one candidate.