Our email will be a thank you note, the kind of note you would send after an interview for a job. You send the note to reinforce the impression you made during the interview.
Writing professional emails has to do with tone and style. Professional emails are business-like. They are not silly or playful. Our John Hit The Ball sentences are perfect for emails. Emails should be short and to the point. That is the kind of writing we are working on throughout this class.
For a business email, you should have a serious sounding email address.
SmillingSallie[at]gmail[dot]com won’t work. This will: SallieMNorton71[at]gmail.com will. So will Norton171[at]gmail[dot]com
You need a subject line that says what the email is about. The subject line should never be left blank. Business executives and college professors take a blank subject line as an indicator of carelessness or even rudeness.
This would be a good subject line for a thank you after a job interview:
Joseph B. Treaster, Following Up on Our Interview.
Joseph B. Treaster, Following Up on Our Accounting Job Interview.
My subject line would be better if it were shorter.
You want your name and a reference to the job. And you want it short.
Putting your name in the subject line is better than just writing Follow Up on Our Interview Today. The recruiter probably had a few interviews on the day she spoke with you. Good to remind the recruiter who you are. Referring to the job that you talked about will help the recruiter remember you.
You need a serious salutation or greeting to start the email. Dear Mr. Flemming or Mr. Flemming. Not, Hey, Roger. Not, Hi, Roger, Certainly not, My man, Use black, business-like ink. No fooling around with colors or emojis. Keep it business like.
Model Business Email
Thank You Follow Up After Job Interview
Subject Line: Joseph B. Treaster, Following up on Our Accounting Job Interview Today
Dear Mr. Flemming,
Thank you for talking with me about the Ford Motor Company and the job opening in accounting. It sounds like a dream job. It fits perfectly with my bachelor’s degree from the University of Miami in business accounting and with my internships in accounting at Bank of America and at Delta Airlines.
I appreciated hearing about the working conditions in the Dearborn office and about the challenges of the accounting job. It sounds just right for me. I want to have a career at a company that makes a difference. The Ford Motor Company has had an enormous impact on the national well-being. I’d be thrilled to be part of the company.
Thanks again for talking with me. I felt a good rapport with you and the other interviewers. I hope you will be considering me for a second round of interviews.
Joseph B. Treaster
University of Miami
Graduate, Class of 2020
In my email model, in which I am a stand-in for you, I refer to specific points that Mr. Flemming made in the interview. It shows that you were listening.
It shows you are interested and it may suggest that Ford was not just one of 50 companies to which you applied. You response about the accounting changes shows that you know something about accounting. You consider it special. Executives in hiring and throughout corporations want to be proud of their work. They want people who join the company to see that the job they are being offered is more than a paycheck.
Usually, I recommend using the word job rather than position. But it might be better in this situation to pick up the jargon of the recruiters. They almost certainly will be taking about the job as a position or as a role. You want rapport with the recruiters. If they like the word position you like it, too.
What you write in your email has to be true. If you don’t believe in what you’re saying in your thank you, don’t say it. Coming across as insincere or as a manipulator does not play well. Say the strongest things you can that show you were fully engaged in the interview, that the company would be good for you and that you would be good for the company. Be enthusiastic. Do not send a vague thank you email. The email needs to be specific and sincere. A good email can do wonders for you.
When you sign off, use a serious sign off. Sincerely is better than All the best for a business thank you. You want to emphasize that you really mean what you said in the email. All the best is what I use all the time in routine, casual business emails for people I know well or feel some connection with. It may be a stranger, but it may be another professor, or another writer and I feel we’re in the same zone. Sincerely is a good business sign off.
Sign off with your full name. At least don’t use a nickname. For your professional emails, create a signature block that gives your name, phone number, email and LinkedIn address.
The business thank you should be short and to the point. If there is a weakness in my model letter, it is that it is a little long. Two of three skinny paragraphs is usually just right.
Your assignment is to write a thank you note to Oscar Hadding, the director of Human Resources, at Google, the huge digital company. Make sure you get the formal name of Google right. The company is looking for a recent college graduate for an entry-level job in user experience.
The job is at Google headquarters in Mountain View, Calif., south of San Francisco. You’ve just had your first interview with Mr. Hadding and two of his recruiters, three separate interviews on the phone, one after another in one day. He told you that Google has been a adjusting the size of its type face and using fewer words in its messages. It is looking for recruits who can recognize clutter and see the value in eliminating it. Google see this change as an improvement in user experience.
Things went well in the interview. You actually liked talking with Mr. Hadding and his staff and you are pretty sure you’re going to be called back for a second interview.
Write the thank you email. Write a subject line, a greeting, the email and a sign off. Create a signature block like the one I created here for the purpose of this business email. I want to see an entire thank you package from you.
After you’ve drafted the email package, put it aside. Come back to it. Read it out loud. Make revisions. Put it down. Come back to it. Make sure you can’t make it one tiny bit better and turn it in.