What’s in a Note…

By: Kirsi Donovan, CTS | Human Resources/Recruiting Assistant

When I was a child, one of the fondest memories that I have of my grandmother is sitting at her kitchen table, surrounded by boxes of stationary and marveling at how she would write the most beautiful thank you notes. I found it amazing that she could find the time to do so many. More over, her consistency sending them was unparalleled.  In every note I read, I found her words simple, elegant and genuine. She thanked each person with integrity and honesty, not only following a gift she had received but thanking several people for so many varied reasons. It seemed to me that she would write notes to almost everyone that she came into contact with throughout the neighborhood, church and political functions. She included friends, professional colleagues and several family members to her list of recipients. She used phrases like “Thank you for taking the time” and always ended her notes in an open-ended manner filled with warmth and care for the recipient.  At that young age, I did not understand why she would take such time to do so many of them and send to many people. As I matured, I started to observe people coming up to us in public and many of them remembering her immediately and saying “thank you for the note.” A comfortable conversation between the two of them would naturally follow, filled with warmth and kind regards. This notable interaction began with the simplicity of sending a note.

In today’s competitive candidate market, we often hear the phrase “what separates you from the rest” or “how will you stand out from the others?” I meet a lot of job seekers at career fairs and I can tell you that when they ask me what else they can do after an interview with a Recruiter to help stand out, I always say follow-up with a written thank you note. I know that email has been become quite the norm but going back to the “old fashioned” way of sending a note goes quite far. As Recruiters, we constantly find ourselves with a plethora of resumes and applications to review on a daily basis. When I receive a thank you note I keep that note on top of their application or resume and definitely remember that candidate . You bet they are my first call for my next available position too! Their notes were not complicated either. A simple “thank you for taking your time to meet with me, it was a pleasure speaking with you” were perfectly stated and I still remember those candidates two years later! Not only do those thank you letters make it to us but I often see my coworkers with “thank you” notes posted on their cube walls. These subtle reminders of different candidates become ingrained with our daily work.

Consequently, my best advice to job seekers out there? Remember to add “Send a Thank You Note” to your to do list after interviewing with a Recruiter or meeting with a professional colleague. You never know what that note can do for you in the future.

Connect with Kirsi Donovan on LinkedIn and Twitter!

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3 Responses to What’s in a Note…

  1. Tim smith June 2, 2011 at 2:34 pm #

    Because it’s so rare is perhaps why it sticks out so much. Also the fact someone took the time to follow up and go the extra 1/16 of a mile to send a note bodes well. A third reason is it seems common courtesy, and, unfortunately over busy-ness or over laziness has taken over in today’s society.

    Excellent advice from the author. Thank you notes are polite, noticeable, and make sense. They work too!

    Tim Smith CEO, Smile-Therapy.com

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