Post Interview Thank You Notes

Over the past few weeks, I’ve gotten the opportunity to interview potential new team members. Remembering how much I hated interviews in college, this has been an interesting experience. I’ve been working to find the balance between not being too harsh but being able to really tell if the candidate would do well on our team. 

One aspect of interviewing that has a bigger impact than I realized is the post-interview thank you note. We recently interviewed someone we really liked, but his thank you emails were full of typos which immediately raised a red flag. Since these notes or emails could make or break you as a candidate, I thought I’d share my advice:

Be Prompt – a note should be sent within 24-48 hours. Most initial hiring decisions are made within that timeframe. 

Keep It Simple – No one wants to read a novel! Get to the point – thank them for their time and ask any questions. 

Reiterate Your Interest – Even though your interviewer knows you’re interested in the position emphasize how the interview with them increased your desire to working there. 

Personalize It – Sending a generic email is almost as bad as having typos or grammar mistakes. Touch on something you discussed with that specific interviewer. If they’ve interviewed multiple people that day, it’ll also help jog their memory. 

Proofread!!! – No typos or mistakes should make their way into this email. Even if you have to have a friend read it over, take the time to make sure it’s perfect before hitting “send”. 

What is your Thank You advice? Have you ever received a poorly written email from an otherwise excellent candidate? 


Conquering the Interview: Preparation is Key

Job interviews are one of those necessary evils of the real world. In order to get ahead or land your dream job, you most likely have to go through some sort of interview process. And while every interview is different, there are a few steps you can take to put your best foot forward and be fully prepared for the experience.

interview - prep

Research, research, research
Familiarize yourself with the company, and the department if possible, as much as you can. There are a lot of different resources you can use for this. Google is a good place to start, as is their website. But also check out their LinkedIn page and their blog if they have one. Depending on the industry, social media can be another great place to learn more about he company. Glassdoor and other review sites can give you some insight into the company culture, which is a big help. In the end, you want to have a clear understanding of how the company operates, what their mission and short- and long-term goals are and what your responsibilities would entail.

Review the job description
Speaking of potential responsibilities, make sure you know what the job posting is asking for. If you don’t exactly fit the desired qualifications, you want to be able to explain why you are the best fit regardless. Know what the company is looking for and review the posting to see if it can answer any questions you might have. The last thing you want is to ask a question that’s answered right in the job description!

Reach out to your network
Networks are an often under-utilized tool when it comes to the job search. You may not realize that your best friend’s cousin works at the company for which you’re interviewing, or that your college roommate has interviewed at that company in the past. Consider your contacts, be it through LinkedIn, your college alumni network or some other way, and try to find someone you can reach out to. Having an inside look can be a huge advantage!

Prepare questions
While asking questions in an interview can help you learn more about the position, they also give your interviewer a lot of insight. If your questions show a strong foundation of knowledge about the company, it reinforces that you are truly interested in the position and not just looking for any old job. Take the time to review your research (as discussed above) and compile thoughtful questions or topics you’d like to discuss in the interview.

Scout out the location
Maybe it’s just me, but I always have the worst luck finding a company on the day of my interview. I always hit traffic, have trouble finding the building or some other mishap. If you’re unfamiliar with the location, take the time a few days before to see what the trip is like, ideally at the same time you’ll be interviewing so you have an idea of what the traffic or public transportation schedule will be like. This will take some of the pressure off of you on interview day since you’ll already have a solid idea of where you’re going.

Confidence is a large contributor to your interview success, so take the time to be fully prepared and it’ll make the process go much, much smoother for you!

Good luck!

Monster Career Advice

When I first began looking for a full-time job during my senior year in college, I found myself at a complete loss as to where to start. There were so many things to consider, from cover letters to resumes, interviews to thank you letters, and more. I felt so overwhelmed and while my school’s career center was helpful to some degree, I needed more in-depth direction than they could offer in a 30 minute session.

Monster is an often-recognized job board site, where you can find postings for jobs in almost every field. What fewer people seem to realize is that Monster has more than just job postings on their site. They have a great career resources section, which has all kinds of articles for job seekers.

There are articles here with advice for everything job related, such as resume and cover letter writing, salary negotiations and networking. They’re simple articles that can guide you in the right direction and answer almost every career question you could possibly have. And in addition to everything job seekers need, there are also great tips for career development and improving once you’ve landed the job.
Some of my favorite articles?
Resume Critique Checklist
5 Ways to Become Irreplaceable at Work
100 Potential Interview Questions

So whether you’re looking for your dream job, or just want to know how to stay on top of your career game, be sure to check out Monster for some great articles to help you along!

What to Wear to an Interview?

Job interviews are a necessary evil in the real world. I’ve never met anyone who honestly likes interviews, but how can you ever get your dream job without interviewing for it, right?

Last year – my senior year in college – was filled to the brim with job applications, networking, company research, interviews and thank you notes galore. Perhaps it was because I attended a business school, but the process for handling this job cycle was ingrained into me and seemed like second nature by the time I finally signed my offer letter.

So imagine my surprise when my best childhood friend, who had never been on a real job interview before, had no idea what to wear for the occasion. She was completely unaware that everyday office wear was not suitable (pun intended) for an interview. Maybe it was the business school environment in which I’d been engrossed for the past four years, but my mind was blown.

While suits are definitely not my favorite things to wear, there are all kinds of ways to make your own style stand out, and at an affordable price! I’ve utilized my newly-discovered love for Polyvore to come up with two sample options of interview-appropriate outfits. Let me know what you think!

Option 1

You can never go wrong with a pants suit for an interview! Despite the trendiness of skinny pants these days, make sure you wear regular trouser cut pants for this occasion. I love a bright and fun, but not distracting, printed top paired with simple jewelry and a sophisticated tote. You’ll stand out from other candidates in this option, but in a totally good way!

Option 2

If skirts are more your thing, this outfit is also a good option. Make sure your skirt is at the knee or just above and not skin-tight. Switching it up a little, you can try a plain top with a statement necklace to add a little personality to your suit attire. Go confidently in this outfit and you’ll be sure to impress any interviewers you face.

The key is to stand out from your competition while also presenting yourself as professional and the right fit for the job!

These outfits are great for the corporate world, but your outfit choices might change depending one the industry. What are your favorite looks to rock for an interview?