After you’ve successfully prepared for your interview (tips on how to do that here), you head into your final job interview confident and ready to go. You answer all the interviewer’s questions with poise and ease and before you know it, the interview’s finishing up. Now what?
Before you head out, it’s critical to ask about the decision timeline. Ask the interviewer when they plan to make a decision and when you can expect to hear from them. Having this information on hand won’t leave you then in a constant state of wonder and nervousness. It will also help you to know when to strategically reach out if needed. Ensure you also ask for everyone’s name and email address who interviewed you(business cards work too). This will set you up for success post-interview to write your thank you’s.
After you get done with the final interview, you can finally breathe a sigh of relief. It’s over – you made it! Unfortunately though, the hustle doesn’t stop there. There’s still a few things you need to do as you wait to hear next steps.
Analyze Your Performance
While your potential future employer analyzes the interview on their end, it’s important that you also do the same. How did you feel coming out of the interview? What did you do well? What could you have done differently? You can just make mental notes, but sometimes it’s good to write these things down. Reason being, say you don’t end up getting the job. Then you have a list of things you know you likely did well and that you could improve on for when you go into the next interview at a different company.
Make a Decision
Most people don’t see the final interview as a mutual one. Yes, the company is interviewing you to see if you’re a good fit for them, but you should also consider if this company is a good fit for you. Ask yourself if you’re excited about the job and the possibilities at the company. Or, did something feel a little off? Be honest with yourself. If you don’t see yourself at the company, it’s best to be transparent and upfront about that.
Let me point out though that there may be times in your life where you won’t be able to be as picky, like if you’re just starting out in your career. Sometimes, you have to go through the uncomfortable and take a job that may not be 100% everything what you want. But, it will allow you to gain experience to help you get an even better job in the long run. Understand when and when you can’t be picky and adjust your approach as necessary.
Send Thank You Emails
This is why it’s important to get everyone’s email address. There’s conflicting advice out there when to send your thank you emails. I’ve read that writing them the same day will make you come across as too eager, but I have to respectfully disagree with that. I personally have always written and sent my thank you emails by the end of the day of my interview. Use your best judgment, but just ensure that you write emails to every individual person you interviewed with.
Typically with final interviews, you’re being interviewed by a team of people, so it’s important to customize each message to them individually. Do not copy/paste the same message to each person because you never know if they are sharing those with each other. I like to think back to my conversation with each person and make sure that I somehow weave that into my email so it triggers their memory of me.
Here’s a sample email for reference:
I wanted to extend a personal thank you for taking the time to meet with me today. I appreciated the transparency you gave me on the company, the leadership, and how all the teams work together. You shed more light into what the Account Manager role entails and the type of candidate your team is looking for. I truly believe that candidate is me.
Your team needs a proactive, independent, and an intrinsically motivated candidate. As I mentioned today, I am extremely proactive when it comes to my clients – I like to anticipate problems before they happen and I think it’s critical to go above and beyond in a job to ensure clients that their needs are extremely important. I’m a team player, but I can work independently in the jobs I hold. I enjoy holding the accountability and responsibility to manage and keep my clients happy. I am intrinsically motivated in that I take pride in my work and acknowledging the skills I am gaining from my job.
I hope I have the chance to work with your team and that I am considered for the Account Manager position. Thank you so much again for speaking with me. Have an amazing time on your trip to Australia!
Side note: even if you’re interviewing for an internal role at your existing company, set yourself apart and write a thank you email. I did this a few months ago when I interviewed for the role I’m in now and sent individual emails to each person who interviewed me. The hiring manager wrote back thanking me for the note and that my thank you spoke volumes to my professionalism and showed how seriously I took the opportunity. Something to keep in mind!
Write Physical Thank You Notes
I’m a firm believer in handwritten thank you notes and nowadays, even as things get more digitized, thank you notes still continue to be a staple. They show thoughtfulness and courtesy. Best of all, it shows that you’re serious about the job and the company. I recommend sending these out the day of if possible too. This way, the lag time between the interview and thank you note isn’t too long. This also helps keep you top of mind since the interviewers will receive your note a few days after the interview. This should go without saying, but write an individual thank you note for each person!
Be Mindful of the Follow Up
After an interview, the last thing you want to do is wait days to find out if landed the job. It’s perfectly normal to be impatient and want answers right away. If you don’t hear from the company within the provided response window they gave you, you do have every reason to reach out.
While it’s great to be persistent, you also don’t want to come across as too eager too soon. It’s good to keep in mind that hiring managers are extremely busy with their day to day jobs. Hiring new employees may be something that gets added to their plate of already existing responsibilities. I usually recommend giving it a few days after the day they told me they’d reach out before I contact them. This way, it shows that you’re being proactive but also patient.
I hope by following these five things after your interview, you’re able to gain some feedback and ultimately land that new job! Please feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments!