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Following Up After an Interview: Persistent or Pesky?

So, you've just left your job interview and you're ecstatic because you answered those questions with ease. The interviewer seemed impressed with your management skills and you're confident you've just landed yourself a new job. Fast forward a few days, you haven't heard from the interviewer. You start to question your interview skills... maybe you shouldn't have told them you left your last job because your boss was a total narcissist. No, you were right before, the interview did go extremely well. Maybe they're waiting to hear from you, maybe they think you're overqualified and not really interested in the position. Might as well give them a call... right? Send a follow up email?

Stop. Right. There.

There is a fine line between showing determination and coming off desperate. Here are some guidelines for post-interview etiquette:

  1. Sending References: Many of us have 'References Available Upon Request' on the bottom of our resumes. If you were not asked to bring references to the interview, you may be asked to email your references to the interviewer post- interview. This is the ONLY time it is acceptable, nay, encouraged, to email the interviewer as soon as possible. After leaving the interview, you organise the contact information of your references and send them to the employer as soon as you can. This shows responsibility and initiative. Moreover, it shows the employer how interested you truly are in the position.

  2. Thanking Them For Their Time: Oftentimes,when we are excited about a possible job opportunity, we want to make our enthusiasm clear. This does not mean you should leave the interview, get out your phone, and send the interviewer an email thanking them for taking the time to meet with you. If the interviewer did not specify when they would contact you, and you have not heard from them a week later, you can send them an email expressing your appreciation. Tell them you look forward to hearing from them, but, do not ask if you got the job. A week may seem like an eternity to you, but they are probably conducting a large number of interviews and need to consult with others before making their decision. By sending them this email, you are reminding them of your interest, without nagging them to make a decision.

  3. Calling Post-Interview: After conducting 20 – 30 interviews, the last thing anyone wants is for their phone to be blowing up with eager candidates, demanding an answer about their status. If you have sent them an email, and a reasonable amount of time has passed (at least 48 hours), you may call them. ONCE. If they do not answer, this means they are busy. This does not mean you should repeatedly call throughout the day until you reach them. This will likely cause them to throw your well written resume, along with your chances of getting the job, in the trash. You can leave a message saying you just want to inquire about the status of the position. You express your understanding of their busy schedule, and politely ask that they get back to you at their convenience. Everyone, and I mean everyone, appreciates it when others understand they have many things on their plate. This shows them that you value their time, and you recognise they have preceding tasks which take priority.

Employers are human. You need to allot them a sufficient amount of time for feedback and be reasonable with your expectations. They probably have a lot of candidates to contact, while simultaneously having to maintain their day to day operations.

So, following your next job interview, feel free to display your interest and determination. However, please, PLEASE, do so without nagging your potential future employer to the point of inconsideration.

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