How to follow up after a tough interview

You interviewed and you are really worried. It was a tough interview and you think maybe you blew it.

Will they pick me after that tough interview?

Thoughts are whirling around in your head and you keep replaying the sound bites over and over. Did you really say the wrong thing?

Even if you think you blew the tough interview, don’t worry

Keep proceeding as if you didn’t. In fact, proceed as if it was the best interview of your life.

STEP ONE – Write a thank you note to everyone in the interview!

  • Perhaps even change up the thank you to acknowledge the different aspects that each person asked you about in the interview. Individualized responses carry more weight than generic replies to the group of interviewers.
  • Clarify the challenges that you think you blew in the tough interview.
  • Reiterate how you would solve the problem or restate the qualifications that you failed to mention.

Don’t be afraid to use the phone

STEP TWO – Call the interviewer in a few days.

  • Most people hate to make the call but when you do, you show them that you are interested in the job.
  • I see people who say that they got an auto rejection. Follow that up too by calling the company.
  • Example: One person accidentally checked a wrong box when applying, it caused auto elimination. But he followed up with a phone call and corrected the error. He was hired. He wouldn’t even have known the reason he was eliminated if he hadn’t called.
  • Stop determining that they don’t want you. If you are qualified and know you can do the job, let them know you want the job and you care enough to make an extra contact.

Even when you get the NO, send a thank you for the NO

Things change. I wrote a detailed post about the thank you for the NO here and in this very popular post, How to reply to job rejection with astonishing grace. Some of the tips included are reasons you might still qualify, such as the other candidate bowed out.

The main point is keep your chin up and follow up. A client called today to say I was right. I didn’t even understand why until he reminded me that I had told him that just because he didn’t hear from someone in two weeks didn’t mean he was eliminated from consideration. He has another interview in a few days, the CEO called him to let him know. Don’t assume!

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How to follow up after a tough interview

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Julie Walraven, Design Resumes

Julie Walraven

Professional Resume Writer

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