2 Powerful Job Search Words – Thank You!

When people tell me they are successfully getting interviews but not getting offers, my first question is, “Did you send a thank you?” This is the secret – Powerful Job Search Words – Thank You!

I coach my clients to send thank yous when we discuss interview strategies. However, even I am lax on writing thank you notes. We get busy and forget how powerful a thank you is in any facet of your life.

Let’s start with the thank you basics – Powerful Job Search Words – Thank You!

In a job search, it can be the make or break factor between launching your new career, getting the next promotion, or getting a job.

Should I email, handwrite, or type?

The most recent career industry dialog came to the consensus that the hand-written thank you is totally acceptable.

With some hiring managers, it might give you an edge because so much is digital these days. For the same reason, an email is ok because it shows a desire to communicate quickly and shows a command of technology.

Who do I send it to?

In these days of team interviews, everyone you interview with should get a thank you. You can exchange business cards if it feels like an appropriate thing to do.

Write their names and titles during the interview as you take other notes about the position. This way you  demonstrate you care about the job.

Take notes while answering questions and using eye contact. If those options fail, check back with the receptionist for the names and proper titles of the interviewers.

When do I send the thank you?

Most experts recommend within 24 hours of the interview. However, you cannot prepare them prior to the interview and hand them out when the interview is over. Why not? Read below.

What should I say?

This is the perfect time to show your value to the organization and prove your understanding of the position. You resell yourself at this point.

What did you learn about the company at the interview? Did you discover solutions you could provide for their problems?

What impressed you about the company? Was there a product or process that struck you as being innovative? Did you like the team atmosphere and feel that you would be a great fit?

Make it count, think sales, and you are the product. Finally, say something to sell yourself as the interviewer reads the thank you.

Now for the twist!

  1. Send that thank you to the job you didn’t get! What? You heard me right. They said no, and you are going to send them one more thank you.
  2. Why? There are times when the first candidate doesn’t work out or backs out or maybe there is another position coming up (perhaps in the hidden job market) that you may fit. By sending a thank you for the “no”, you keep the door open.
  3. What should you say? In a thank for the no, you will say something like: “I realize that at this time, you have found a different candidate. I want to thank you for the opportunity to learn more about your company. I appreciate the value XYZ company has in the field of _________ and I enjoyed learning and your upcoming digital transformation. In the future, I would like to be considered for opportunities you have for X Position. Thank you again for spending the time with me in the interview process.”

When else is a Thank You note appropriate?

I really think we forgot the art of the thank you. We say we are too busy, we are overwhelmed, or we are just absent-minded. But those two words are so powerful.

Combined in written form, these powerful job search words, thank you change the way people think of us. Saying thank you can make us the one who is remembered, and propel us on the road to success.

Not only should we say the words more often, we need to write those thank you notes. Don’t save them for only the job search process. We need to say them and write thank yous to the colleagues who help us out with great ideas. 

How about saying thank you to the friend who takes time to listen? What about saying thank you to the customer or client who is faithful in tough times to continue to buy your services or products. Thank you!

Ready to move on or up from your existing position? Let me, Julie Walraven, a Wausau, Wisconsin-based triple-certified executive resume writer and career marketing strategist, help you get ready for your next role! To find out how, Click here!

2 Powerful Job Search Words - Thank You!


  1. Dawn Bugni on October 6, 2009 at 9:01 am

    Julie –

    This post relates to what I tweeted on Twitter moments ago BEFORE I saw this:

    “#Jobseekers: Adding “Thank You” to your repertoire may or may not speed the search, but it’ll sure make the trip easier.”

    Love the “thank you even though they said no” twist too. I’m adding that tidbit to my client information. Brilliant.

    Gratitude is power. You never know who will remember you for your kindness or who’s day you made and how that will impact your future. Make gratitude and thank you inherent in everything and watch the positive it brings.

    Great info!!!

  2. Shahrzad Arasteh | Career Consulting Services on March 10, 2012 at 4:48 pm

    Thank you, Julie! In addition to just being the right thing to do, and showing good manners and genuine appreciation, all the great tips and reasons you highlighted will help readers understand why feeling and showing gratitude matters…and how they might do so.

    So, thank you, as always!

    • Julie Walraven on March 10, 2012 at 5:32 pm

      You are welcome, Shahrzad. The question comes up a lot from clients and sometimes from people who just know I am in the career industry. When do you send a thank you… answer is always.

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