Wednesday, January 11, 2012
So...you think YOU'RE special?
I have a confession to make to you all. I took too much of my own advice and landed myself a great new job which has, unfortunately, pulled me away from staying in touch with you as often as I should have. But I’m back, and I have even more tips for you as you navigate your job search.
So…You think YOU’RE special? is a blog series dedicated to sharing with you easy ways you can stand out in the droves of applicants seeking the job you were destined to have.
So…You think YOU’RE special? Really!? I interview about 1,000 people every year. Year in, year out….whether I like it or not. If you were one of those 1,000 candidates I interviewed, do you think you would have stood out? Let me ask you that in another way…..
o Did you have the best pressed suit?
o Were you the guy with the most accomplishments?
o Were you the girl who shared my alma mater?
o Did you have the best haircut?
o Did you have the best smile?
o Did you have the strongest technical knowledge?
If you didn’t have ALL of these things (and more), the chances are you didn’t stand out. No matter how unique our backgrounds are, how many significant things we’ve accomplished, what our educational credentials are, etc… we’re all very much the same in many ways. That’s a good thing…and a bad thing. The reason for the latter is because if we’re all very similar, HOW CAN YOU STAND OUT? You want your interviewers to remember you! Heck, you WANT them to HIRE you! They can’t hire you if they forget you moments after your interview.
This is a multi-set blog I’m bringing to you, but this first tip on how to be remembered is this –
SEND THANK YOU NOTES
This evening as I was walking the dogs, my phone alerted me of a new message. I looked quickly while juggling the dog leashes and dodging the cars driven by the slightly tipsy drivers leaving their various happy hour engagements, and I saw a “Thank you” email from a Berkeley student who I recently interviewed. It reminded me, yet again, how important it is to say thanks after your interviews. Here’s why…
If your interview was great – and you send a thank you note, it will confirm and validate the hiring managers already good feelings about you.
If your interview was decent – and you send a thank you note, it might be that one thing that tips the scale in your direction and gets you the offer instead of that joker with the better suit and the whiter teeth who interviewed right after you.
If your interview was awful – and you send a thank you note, it may not get you the job right now. But it sure as heck will keep you at the top of the list should the top candidate get the offer and decline…or if another position comes open, and your thank you note is sitting on their desk they just may call you. Who knows, they may have even forgotten how botched your interview was and call you just because your name (and thank you note) are in front of them.
Trust me. This works time and time again. “Nothing is more honorable than a grateful heart.” (Seneca). Religions and self help programs have stressed GRATITUDE as being one of the QUICKEST ways to attaining peace and serenity. I’m here to tell you, they’re right! Being THANKFUL will bring you peace, serenity AND it will quite possibly be the one thing that gives you the leg up so you can kick the other guy’s butt in the job market and GET YOURSELF A JOB OFFER!
Say thanks, and say it often…
We’ll continue this “So…YOU think YOU’RE special?” series next week with another quick and easy way to stand out in the crowd. Until then, all my best!