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From The Archive

56. Thanks is not enough.
Don't let anyone convince you that employers don't care about thank-you notes after job interviews. Good business people value courtesy and follow-up. But you can take a thank-you note a step further: fill it with help and expertise.

For example:

"Thanks for the stimulating discussion. Each time we talk, I'm more intrigued and excited about the prospect of working with you. I thought you might be interested in this article I ran across. It's on the subject of xyz, and I think some of these ideas could be applied to the challenge you're facing that we discussed in our meeting. Best regards."

On the clipping, handwrite "To: [manager's first and last name]" and "From: [your first and last name and phone number]". Mark up two or three relevant passages in the article, and include one or two short notes in the margin. Be careful: your comments must be relevant to the discussions you had, and they must provide useful information to the manager. This must not appear mindless.

Thank-you notes from other candidates will get tossed out. Your clipping will likely stay on the manager's desk. It may even get routed to others on the manager's team, if it's really useful.

Including a relevant clipping emphasizes your focus on something you and the employer have in common -- the work you both do. And, it points out that you're in touch with the issues. The tone of your note emphasizes that you're a peer, not just some job hunter who dropped in off the street. Be respectful but not overly formal. Address the manager as though he's your boss, not an interviewer.

Like your boss, an employer wants your expertise and your help. Thanks is not enough.

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