My Secret Interview Tip

I'm going to let you in on my best kept interview secret. Feel free to steal it and use it.

Back in 2006 when I was 16 I applied for a job at a local restaurant as a hostess. The interview went well and I really wanted the position, but I had one obstacle to overcome: the restaurant typically hired highly attractive women. I know that is fairly sexist, but I understand it as a marketing ploy. Anyways, I'm not a 10 by any means (I'd say I'm a solid 7), so I had to do something to stand out. 

I wrote him a handwritten note. Simple I know, but in my experience has been very successful. Everyone sends a follow up email. A note is more personal, and like I said, it stands out.

Here's how to write a successful thank you note:

  • Send it out within 24 hours of the initial interview. You want to make sure they get it before they make a final decision and while the interview is still fresh in their minds.
  • Highlight some part of the interview. If they are looking for someone good at social media, mention your success running campaigns in the past. If you forgot to touch upon something that made you an ideal candidate in the interview, mention it.
  • Be professional. Choose a plain card (unless there was something in the interview you could highlight with a different card) and use professional language. Thank them for considering you. Let them know how interested you are in the position.
  • Keep it short and sweet. It should be about the same length as a follow up email will be.

And to answer your question, yes, I got the job at that restaurant. The manager told me the reason they decided to hire me was because of the note I sent. He and I are friends to this day.