Don’t get complacent, make sure you do an interview follow-up
So you’ve made it through the interview and are waiting to hear back. Some people think that their part is now done and they should just sit around waiting for the call Wrong! Here are 9 interview follow-up tips that you should follow to not only leave a great lasting impact, but also to help you set yourself up for the next time.
1. Establish next steps
Ask the interviewers what their procedure is after interviews. Are there more rounds? Will there be a follow-up? Who will be responsible for initiating communication? Will they call or email you? If so how long after will that happen? Once you get a sense of the timeline you will know not only how long you may have to wait to hear back, but can also start preparing for any further steps. Hannah Morgan, Job Search and Career Specialist, talks about how crucial this is in the interview process for all involved.
There are no exceptions. You MUST know the answers to these questions. It allows you to plan your follow-up. What is the next step in this process? What is your time line for getting back to candidates about the next steps?
2. Get your interviewers’ contact information
You’re obviously interested in the company so why not connect with the people who work there. Ask your interviewers for their business cards after the interview and keep them filed away for future opportunities.
3. Reflect – I minute Interviewee
Remember the book the 1 Minute Salesperson? It recommends after each sales meeting you sit down quietly and reflect on how it went. Well do the same after your interview. It can be in your car or in a coffee shop. Build this into your interview routine. If you rush out and back to work, you may miss some key points. Reflect on your performance and how you handled certain questions. This reflection will help you work on your strengths and weaknesses for the next time.
Many candidates are so focused on presenting their best selves, they forget that interviews are a two-way street. What are your takeaways and observations? Think about the questions asked, the people involved and their body language. How did people treat you and how did they interact with each other? Did the situation meet your expectations? If not why not? This will also help you pick up on non-verbal communication cues in the future. Very often key tells are not always in the spoken word. What are the offices like? What message do they give about the company? Make sure you are also armed with your own list of questions.
5. Ask your recruiter to follow-up
Your recruiter is also invested in you getting the job, so ask her to follow up. The interviewer may give them feedback that they might not be willing to share. It’s also a good way to bring you to top of mind before the process is completed, without seeming to nag or stalk.
6. Personal message of thanks
Regardless of the outcome, always send a personal message of thanks to the interviewer. Thank them for their time and for the opportunity. You never know when another opening will come up at that company or when your paths will cross again. By sending a personal thank you they are more likely to remember you positively in the future. As Jacqui Barrett-Poindexter Master Resume Writer points out:
Everyone with whom you come in contact is a potential influencer to the decision-maker who impacts your future.
7. Connect on LinkedIn
Following on from asking for business cards, find and connect with the people you met at the interview on LinkedIn. Send a customised request and keep an open, pleasant line of communication.
8. Keep your foot on the gas
There is a tendency to ease up on job search if you are holding out for a particular opportunity. Recruitment processes can take a long time, up to several months. Don’t risk missing out on other great jobs whilst waiting for a call back. You can always get in touch with the recruiter to let them know you have received another offer or have advanced in a parallel process. Dorothy Dalton, Executive Search specialist says:
This is very common and I always ask candidates if they are active on the market. Be careful not to play games or use an external offer for leveraging an internal situation. That happens frequently too.
9. Be gracious in rejection
If you don’t get the job, remain gracious. Being angry or stroppy will just burn bridges for the future and leave them with a bad last impression of you. Thank them for their time and ask for a referral – very often people are willing to do it. Susan P Joyce, Online Job Search Specialist, has this to say about keeping bridges:
For many reasons, including maintaining a professional reputation, don’t be rude, too. And, being professional may pay very big dividends in the future with this employer or these people.
The interview process isn’t over when you walk out the door, and by following these interview follow-up tips you not only keep yourself at the front of their mind but put yourself in a better position for next time.
If you want to improve your interview performance contact 3Plus