As job losses mount and poor economic news can seem overwhelming, it is important that we keep in mind that American workers still have the talent and ambition to grow this economy. One of the simplest ways to inspire a hiring manager to extend a job offer is also one of the most easily overlooked and that is to express gratitude.
“There is more hunger…for love and appreciation in this world than for bread.” - Mother Teresa
People love to be recognized every day for their hard work, for their patronage, and for their simple acts of kindness. When you interview for a job, you must be very mindful and appreciative of the amount of time and effort people have put into your interview. Multiple people invest their valuable time reviewing your resume, setting up an interview schedule, coordinating your visit, and speaking to you directly. These individuals are taking the time to assess your fit into their organizational culture. Their internal culture is an important part of their lives and it is near and dear to their hearts.
If you show gratitude throughout the entire interview process, you will have a more positive experience, and your positive attitude may easily inspire someone to hire you.
So how can you express gratitude during the interview? Here are some simple but effective tips:
1. Dress professionally regardless of the internal attire norms of the organization.
2. Express thank you in person to anyone who does something for you (e.g. holds the door open for you, greets you at the front desk, gives you directions, brings you a glass of water, purchases your lunch).
3. Address each person you meet with the appropriate professional designation or courtesy (e.g. Dr., Mr., Ms.). Continue to do so, until given permission to address someone by their first name.
4. Give a firm but not crushing handshake and look the person in the eye when you shake his or her hand.
5. Initiate the interview by thanking each person for taking the time to meet with you.
6. Smile during the interview.
7. Conclude each interview by thanking each person again for taking the time to meet with you.
8. Send thank you notes after the interview is concluded to every person that was part of the interview process especially the person who coordinated your visit.
Let's remember the significance of expressions of gratitude, positivity and recognition - be they merely for a lovely day, a kind word or a small act of courtesy. It truly is the “little things” that can make or break our attitudes, and it is our attitudes, which can so often determine our success.
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