The Power of Thank You – Write a Note and Reap the Benefits

Many studies have identified the power of saying ‘thank you.’  When you say ‘thank you’ your customers they spend more, they return less, they tell their friends about you and your service delivery.  In the workplace employee productivity increases when a sign of appreciation is shown such as ‘thank you.’  Likewise vendors go the extra mile, provide deeper discounts, extend credit, deliver on time and increase consideration.  This drives profit, margin and success.

If this is the case in all aspects of business then it would be expected that appreciation has positive benefits in all aspects of life – including job seeking.  Research shows that candidates that send a thank you note to a potential employer after an interview have a higher likelihood of being hired.    This is a very important part of the hiring process, not only for the candidate but for the recruiter.  Imagine the impact to your relationship with your client if every one of your candidates sent in a thank you note?

Candidates are encouraged (should be forced) to send in a ‘thank you’ note in all cases; even if they did not think the interview went well or did not want the job.  First and foremost business is about building relationships – all relationships and courtesy and appreciation is the foreground for that development. 

However, as important as the ‘thank you’ note is, what is more impactful is what is written.  Take the time to recall qualities of the interviewer or highlights of the interview.  Show that the interview had meaning to you and the interview had insight.  A hand written note is always best; however, time does not always afford this luxury, so email is a readily acceptable method.  In a thank you note, less is more - do not lose sight of the authenticity.

Some do not know where to start or how to write an effective ‘thank you’ note.  Here is a generic sample note that may be of use:

“Interviewers Name,

Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts on the position, expectations and more importantly your experience.  Your insight was appreciated and I am excited about the future opportunity of working with you and the team.



We should not underestimate the power of saying thank you and all candidates should take the time to send a thank you note.  There is no downside to the act and the upside is not just a greater likelihood of being hired but the opportunity to start building a strong employee-employer relationship.

Darryl Moore

Executrade – Your Recruitment Specialists

Views: 3952

Comment by Steven Salter on July 17, 2012 at 12:25pm

I completely agree and enjoyed reading your blog. I have for years been training my staff in the value of the “back to basics” “thank you letter”. I have lost count of the number of times I have been able to turn a potential rejection into a job offer, based on a simple thank you note. Recruiters in this day and age can become so busy wrapped up in the technology and the urgency to hit a ratio that they forget; or have never been taught, that this is a people business. Whilst most hiring decisions are a people (human) based decision - I know which horse I would be backing! 

Comment by Valentino Martinez on July 17, 2012 at 12:35pm

Gracias, Danke, Grazie, Domo, Asante..."Thank you" in any language does have a powerful impact…verbally and in writing--particularly in the recruitment process between both interviewee and interviewer, not just from the job candidate.

Comment by Steven Salter on July 17, 2012 at 12:39pm

I could not agree more – gratitude is the most powerful form of selling in the universe. 

Comment by Elise Reynolds on July 17, 2012 at 4:11pm

I think too we as recruiters need to remember to always circle back to people who refer clients and candidates.

Even when we can't work with that client or candidate. 


I was listining to a motivational speaker who described that if you don't follow up with people after they refer someone to you then they are apt to assume that the referal was of no value or even a negative.  


Take this case in point someone named Ms. Brown  refers you to a  salesman named Steve for a sales position you are recruiting.  You speak to Steve  and you find out that he wants too much money or is not a fit.    Latter when the Ms. Brown sees Steve and asks "How did it go with Elise the recruiter I refered to you?" .  Steve says "not well, it did not work out."  What is Ms. Brown going to think?   Is she going to be ready to refer more people to you? 

But if you send Ms. Brown a note (email is fine)  saying "Thanks for refering Steve, he and I spoke yesterday.  He has a great background and I enjoyed talking with him.  He and I decided that he is not a fit for this particular position  but he and I are going to keep in touch for future opportunities.   Thanks again for the referal I very much appreciate it."   Ms. Brown will think, that it was positive, that Steve was treated well by me and I that I am interested in anyone she would like to refer. 

Comment by Bill Schultz on July 17, 2012 at 5:38pm

Good point, Elise.

Comment by Tiffany Branch on July 18, 2012 at 10:02am

I guess I'm in the minority. As a corporate recruiter, a "thank you" isn't a make it or break it for me. I see it as "interview etiquette." Nothing more, nothing less. If you are the right person for the job, I'm not going to "not" extend an offer because you did or didn't send a thank you note or email.


Heck, most of the interview notes I get, especially the ones via mail, are from candidates I'm not moving forward with anyway.

Comment by Steven Salter on July 18, 2012 at 10:36am


If I had three equally qualified candidates interview for my firm, all of whom were "the right person for the job"; all of which I liked and would hire; however one of them sent me “the hiring manger” a thank you note; he is the candidate I would hire above the other two. - Its simple! 

Comment by Darryl Moore on July 18, 2012 at 10:38am

Tiffany you make a great point however so does Steven. This is not about what you did not do hurting your chances, but what extra was done to improve the relationship. Certainly the stats don't suggest that a 'thank you' is a make or break move but it is the little things that can identify cultural fit, interest, consideration, and appreciation. While a decision should never be based on a 'thank you' note as you identified, if it came from your lead candidate would that not set a stronger foundation for the new hire relationship to begin upon?  Especially if it was sincere and authentic (not cut and paste)? Good 'interview etiquette' on the part of the candidate should include a thank you because it should confirm what was demonstrated in the interview - the person has professional consideration and real appreciation for the hiring organization and your time.  I am willing to bet most of the thank you notes most of us get are generic and non-specific – a common error candidates make – saying thank you without sincerity is worse than not saying thank you at all.

Comment by Tiffany Branch on July 18, 2012 at 10:49am

In the scenario Steven presented, it "could" make a difference based upon the "culture" of the organization or the specific hiring manager. However, for me, it's just not a factor. In my current organization, it's not an "impressive" thing.

In my experiences, I have noticed that more of my "baby boomer" managers favored the "thank you notes" moreso thatn the "Gen X/Y" managers. Many of my "Gen X/Y" peers don't care either way about thank you notes or reading cover letters. Heck, may be it just shows how with each generation "etiquette" is slowly going out the door. (Not saying that's a good thing.)

Comment by Theresa OKeefe on July 18, 2012 at 11:14am

I totally agree with writing "Thank You" notes to interviewers.  Speaking from my own personal experiences, I was hired every single time by employers I took the time to thank.  Most even told me the "deciding factor" was the note because no one else had done something so thoughtful.  So, I'm a very big fan of "thank you" notes, and have been for most of my working life.


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