HR said, “We are still going to bring George in, but his Thank You note wasn’t professional at all.”
I cringed as she told me the problem. Then I decided to do a survey of managers, directors, and HR folks to see how a Thank You can be done wrong.
The 3 biggest mistakes:
- A text message thank you
- A sloppy ugly note
- Spelling and grammar errors
A text message thank you
Nothing says I didn’t really want to send this message as much as a text message. The short, compressed, choppy text message can only give a bad impression. An email is the most common thank you note. Email is fine but text messages reek of insincerity to many hiring managers.
A sloppy ugly note
A clean typewriter paper page with a short handwritten note is great. A card from the store with nothing inside but your neatly written thanks is wonderful. Typed is okay if your handwriting is bad. Short is best.
Paper ripped from a spiral notebook is horrible. A napkin with a note — please, don’t even consider it. A pen that skips and was restarted on the page, don’t send it! A card printed from your PC – don’t! They just don’t look professional. We are going for professional here.
Spelling and grammar errors
If you have any doubts, don’t send it. Hand it to someone who is good at spotting bad grammar and spelling.
In a nutshell
You will be judged by what you send. If it looks professional, heartfelt, and personal, you will be judged well. If it looks unprofessional, so will you.
It is best to send a nice professional looking note. If you can’t, sending nothing is better than broadcasting your incompetence.