After interviews, job seekers typically send nondescript, cookie-cutter thank-you notes: It was a pleasure meeting you and I appreciate the time you spent speaking with me. I know that I can add significant value to your team, but, these letters are often disregarded and turn out to be a waste of time.
To ensure your letters stand out from the competition, it is important to rethink how you approach them. Understand the purpose of your thank-you letters is to get you another meeting and to further sell yourself into that position, which can easily be accomplished if you incorporate a new spin on the thank-you letters of ol'.
Here are three ways to turn bland and ineffective thank-you letters into offer-winning sales documents:
Overcome objections: You're right. I do not have experience selling HR solutions, but I can assure you in my current and previous roles I successfully sold products and services that were new to me. My approach? Learn what makes that service unique and how it fills a void for the client; once I know that, I can sell benefits which, rather than features, naturally address the true concerns of the client.
Share how you have solved a similar problem: I have met the challenges of employee retention you are currently facing in your department. As a VP of Human Resources at XY Corporation, I made employee recognition frequent and peer-driven by forming committees and programs for employees to recognize each other with various awards (such as above and beyond the call of duty), improving employee retention 15% in two years.
Highlight qualifications missed in interview: During our fast-paced, exciting discussion, I was remiss in telling you I spent much of my childhood in Hong Kong and have been back many times as an adult. I am very comfortable with international travel and am in a place in my life where I would welcome it. Given your aggressive goal to double your current revenue in international markets such as Hong Kong, I feel I would be a natural fit.
After the interview is no time to stop selling. In fact, it is the ideal time to address objections, share an idea/proposal, explain how you have already done the job and, lest I forget, thank them for their time. Remember, the purpose of a thank-you letter is to get you to the next meeting, so keep your letters interesting, compelling and unique and ditch the bland and boring ones!