Thank You Letters - What You Should Know

Sending a thank you letter is as important as the interview preparation. But they're tough to write, so people either tell themselves that not sending one doesn't matter, or they procrastinate until it's too late and almost pointless anyway. But anyone who tells themselves that foregoing a fundamental rule of etiquette doesn't matter, not only taints themselves in the mind of the interviewer, but misses two additional opportunities to sell.

A thank you letter is an additional sales piece. As I've said before, you're selling a product and the product is you. So beyond the reason of etiquette, the letter sells you as a polite person who recognizes that the interviewer gave them something valuable: time and consideration.
A fundamental rule of sales is to keep the product in front of the buyer and reinforce its benefits. So beyond the etiquette, the letter gives you ample space to comment on what you liked about the company, why your skills are of benefit to them, and how much you're interested.

If something wasn't tied up, or was left unsatisfactorily, you should use the space to further address the issue.
When you miss the opportunity to reinforce your skills and tie them to the job requirements, you miss a chance to sell. When you fail to address a concern or answer a question and leave it to fester in the mind of the interviewer, you've failed to overcome an objection. And if a buyer has an objection to the product, if it isn't addressed, the likelihood of the sale is slim. The third opportunity missed by skipping the thank you letter is the chance to keep your name in front of the buyer. Read newspapers? Watch TV? See the same ads over and over and over again? It's somewhat the same principle if you keep your name in front of the hiring authority, they're more likely to remember you.

Thank you letters
are one of the reasons it's important to take notes during an interview. Not only does it show good attention to detail, it saves you from having to scrunch your face up trying to remember some of the information you learned about the company and position during the interview. Because if you met with three separate people during one visit to the company, that's three thank you letters.three different thank you letters.

So let's look at how to create one of these so that it becomes a less odious task.
First paragraph Open with the obligatory thank you and include how you enjoyed the meeting. Say why. Maybe the people you met were exceptional. Perhaps their company philosophy was exactly what you had hoped for. Or they need to overhaul a department and you can't wait to sink your teeth into it because that's what you've got a stellar track record of doing. It doesn't matter. Pick something out, and put it down. But make it real. Second paragraph What took place during your interview? Pull out a piece of information that pleased you, say what it was, and tell them why. For instance: I was particularly pleased to find that X company/the opportunity/your management style has/was/is/does whatever. This is exciting because you can expand on whatever it is for a few sentences by elaborating: how it relates to something you've experienced and liked -- or didn't like. Discuss a particular aspect of the job you find appealing and reiterate why you'd be successful at it or how long you've been performing it or how similar it is to something you've done in the past.

Third paragraph You can add a similar paragraph if the second was fairly short. Or you can wind it up if it was a bit lengthy. If there was something that came up that needed clarification or about which they were dubious, address it and clear it up here. Fourth paragraph Wind it up. Re-iterate your interest. Be enthusiastic! Leave the job speak behind. If you really want to be hired, let your interest shine through. There's nothing wrong with coming right out and saying, I'd love to work with X company!

Caution: Don't start every sentence with I. It may be the easiest way to write the letter but it's not only repetitive, it's a turn off and egotistical. This process is about you getting a job, but it's about what they get out of it if they hire you.
If you really want the job, the letter will be easy to write because it will contain genuine impressions and sentiments. If you choose to skip the letter, perhaps you don't care if you're hired or not. But make that decision yours and withdraw from the process instead of letting the decision be made for you.

Source: www.findtheperfectjob.com

Thank You Note Wording ~ The Blog

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Question and Answer on How to Write a Thank-You Note

How to Write a Thank-You Note

Question: I have a crushing inability to write proper thank-you notes. Can you offer me some guidelines? –Helen

Answer: I was wondering when you were going to ask that question, and frankly, I’m a little disappointed it took you so long. Somewhere in between your mom making you sit down with your Peanuts® stationery and you shooting off an email, you completely lost touch with the concept of simple thank-you notes. Now that you’re a grown-up, an email just won’t do, and more is expected of you than scratching out ‘Thanks for the present, you rock!’

Grandma might not say anything to you, but trust me: She and her friends are probably at this very moment sighing over how young people today just don’t have manners.

As extra motivation, I will also grudgingly tell you the hidden secret of thank-you notes: They improve the frequency and quality of the gifts you receive. People like being appreciated, and if they feel you actually notice the nice things they do for you, they’re more likely to give an encore performance. Do not, however, use this as a strategy to avoid writing thank-yous to those who regularly give gifts you do not like. Every gift deserves a thank-you. Even the ‘Keep On Truckin’’ blacklight poster your crazy Uncle Alvarez gave you when you moved into the dorms.

I assure you, writing thank-yous is easier than you remember. Get yourself some stationery, plain note cards or a selection of attractive postcards (yes, postcards are perfectly acceptable!), and proper postage. Avoid the pre-inscribed ‘Thank you!’ cards in loopy script, as there are times you’ll want to write notes where that aesthetic feels all wrong. Better to choose paper you like. Stay away from full-size sheets—note cards are best, as your message will be brief, and would look silly swimming around on a page that large. Store all of these items somewhere easily accessible and preferably in plain sight so you won’t hesitate too long or forget too easily. Say, the top drawer of your desk or on a bookshelf at eye level or below.

If you want to know when you get a genuine pass on writing a note, the litmus test is simple: Do I live under the same roof as the giver? If the answer is ‘yes,’ you need not write a thank-you note (although a thank-you Post-It might be a nice touch).

I’m not going to go all Miss Manners on your ass and get into the social intricacies and delicate situations that surround thank-you note writing, as I was taught that a solid thank-you note will transcend all complicated situations—and I have seen no evidence to the contrary.

There is a six-point formula to the proper thank-you: Learn it, know it, memorize it—and it will never fail you.

1. Greet the Giver

Dear Aunt Sally,

That’s the easy part, but you’d be surprised how many people forget it. Dale Carnegie taught us people love to hear their own names and Direct Marketing is sure we also love to read them in ink. That’s right, ink. Blue-black is always the number-one choice, but black will suffice in a pinch. Don’t let a whimsical marker color be the most stunning part of your note: instead let the words sing without the amplification of rainbow hues. Even if your handwriting is poor, you must still hand-write your notes. Do not type them or, worse, use a word processor. No excuses.

2. Express Your Gratitude

Thank you so much for the slippers.

This first paragraph seems like it would be the easiest, but it is actually the most complicated. Beware the just writing trap. You are not ‘just writing to say’ as in I am just writing to say; that’s stating the obvious. If the giver is reading, clearly you have already written. Therefore use the present-perfect tense, which essentially means write as if whatever you say is happening in the moment.

Also—and this is important—never directly mention money. ‘Thank you for the hundred bucks’ could instead be ‘Thank you for your generosity.’ All cash denominations become ‘your generosity’ or ‘your kindness.’ If you feel the giver overspent, the farthest you can go is appreciated: ‘Your generosity is appreciated,’ or ‘It is such an extravagant gift—your kindness is appreciated.’

If you’re writing to thank someone for an intangible (such as them putting you up at their place while you were in town for the weekend), first define what the intangible thing is, and then make the gift sound as attractive as possible. In other words, don’t say: ‘Thanks for letting us crash at your place.’ Instead say: ‘Thank you for your hospitality.’ Don’t worry if it sounds too simple; the point of writing the note is to create a simple expression of a heartfelt sentiment.

3. Discuss Use

It gets very chilly here in the winter, so they will get a lot of use when winter comes.

Say something nice about the item and how you will use it. Let’s say it’s something you actually love and use incessantly—then say so: ‘Ever since I got the slippers I have only taken them off to shower and go to work. I’d wear them to the office if I thought I could get away with it.’

But don’t lie, even though some etiquette books may tell you it’s okay. After all, there’s always a truth that can be extracted. Let’s say you hate the slippers. How to say thanks? Find the one thing about them that’s nice and discuss it—but don’t get carried away. ‘They are such a lovely shade of blue’ works, and is more honest than ‘These slippers make my heart sing like a choir of angels,’ which is overkill. If it was a gesture, like letting you stay at their place, you can follow the lines of ‘It’s so nice to make a personal connection while traveling. I really appreciated my time with your family.’

If the gift was cash, allude to how you will use the money, but do not itemize your planned purchases line by line, instead simply say: ‘It will be a great help when we purchase our new home/toaster/lava lamp/whatever.’

You can get arty here, but not flowery. It’s a fine line. Small, realistic statements like ‘I put the flowers on the kitchen table and they are still looking fresh and beautiful after a week,’ or ‘I don’t know which is more fun, actually using the Cuisinart, or reading recipes and thinking I could do that in the Cuisinart!’ Having fun is alright, so have at it.

4. Mention the Past, Allude to the Future

It was great to see you at my birthday party, and I hope to see you at Dad’s retirement in February.

Why did they give you the gift? What does it mean to your relationship with the giver? Let the giver know how they fit into the fabric of your life. If it’s someone you see infrequently, say whatever you know: ‘Mom tells me you’re doing great at Stanford, and I hope we cross paths soon.’ If it’s someone you’re in regular contact with: ‘I’ll call you soon, but I wanted to take time to say thanks.’ If it’s some errant family member you have little or no contact with, simply go with ‘You are in my thoughts and I hope you are well.’ Nice, right?

5. Grace

Thanks again for your gift.

It’s not overkill to say thanks again. So say it.

6. Regards


Simply wrap it up. Use whatever works for you: Love, Yours Truly, With Love. Then sign your name and you’re done.

What’s Not There

Any news about your life. This isn’t the time to brag about your new job, a hot girlfriend, or number of surgeries. The thank-you is exclusively about thanking somebody for their kindness. While you may want more than anything to show them once and for all you amounted to something, this is not the forum. Save that for your annual Christmas letter.

Now get it in the mail. Even if your friends and relatives aren’t of the note-writing variety, be the one who sets the precedent. Thank-you-note writing is one of the loveliest traditions to have been utterly compromised by the information age. Let’s start a movement to revive a little gracious living.

Source: http://www.themorningnews.org/archives/how_to/how_to_write_a_thankyou_note.php

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