Before your big interview, this can be a time filled with anxiety, elation, and trepidation. But what about after the interview? Even if you feel like you aced your interview, you might be wondering what’s next. (And that’s totally normal!) But even if you didn’t, you can still save your performance. Here are smart moves to make after your interview to better your chances of getting hired!
Journal Everything You Remember
You can get great feedback from interviewers even without asking for it. If they seemed to ask you a lot of questions about something specific–like how you handle conflict, or how you would manage a direct report who had complaints filed against him, or if you’ve ever gone through a merger–you might be uncovering valuable information about your role and the company. But don’t rely on your memory. Write everything down. Then, look for themes. You can use this information in the follow-up email that you send to the team.
Follow Up with a Thank You Email
You probably already know to send the hiring manager a thank you note. But you should also send a note to the recruiter you spoke with and every team member you interviewed with. Tailor each letter to the interaction you had with them. For the recruiter, let her know your thoughts on fit/culture, thank her for her time, and ask her to keep you in mind if other roles that seem to match your skillset arrive. You may also ask if she’d be willing to connect with you on LinkedIn.
If you noticed trends in your interview, you can mention them in your follow-up email. For example, if one team member asked you several questions about how you are at wrapping gifts (as usual, you’re applying for a Santa’s elf position), include some personalized tips about gift-wrapping in your email. Even if it’s a link to your favorite gift-wrapping techniques on Pinterest or a funny story about the time your father wrapped your sister’s graduation gift in newspaper, ruining her white graduation gown–drop it in. Let them know you picked up what they were laying down, you recognize its importance, and offer your take or viewpoint on the topic.
It’s normal to think of things you wished you’d said during your interview on the drive home afterward. That’s ok. You can always follow-up and include anecdotes or stories to help yourself stand out.
Update Your Resume
Sometimes, interviewers are looking for something specific They’re trying to determine how good you are at a particular skill or how useful you’d be on a certain project. If you discover that interviewers are habitually asking you about something that isn’t on your resume but should be, now is a great time to add it. You’re likely to forget or second-guess yourself if you wait too long. They might use industry terms you hadn’t heard before, or drop in a few buzzwords you know but haven’t used to describe yourself. Consider adding some of that information in your resume and LinkedIn profile. That insider info from someone who is already on the team you want to be on can be precious in helping your craft the image that people like that interviewer are looking for.
Notify Your References
It might have been a while since you initially asked your last manager or your current co-worker if they’d be willing to give you a reference. So if you’ve managed to secure an interview, make sure you let your references know to expect a call. You can even feed them the information you want them to relay. For example, if your last job was a mix of copywriting and design, but you really want to focus on design, make sure your references hype you up as a designer–they don’t even have to mention your copywriting skills. People are usually happy to help you, so just be sure to give them guidelines and a heads up.
Keep Applying to Other Jobs
That adrenaline rush you get from having a great interview is the perfect time to apply to another job. You’re feeling confident and powerful, so it’s a prime opportunity to apply for jobs a little bit outside your normal scope. If there’s a job you’ve been eyeing, but you don’t’ know that you’re completely qualified, the confidence you feel after an interview might give you the boost you need to go ahead and apply. Remember: if you’re an 80% match for a job, you should go for it. You do not need to be able to do every little thing in the job description. As long as you’re honest about your strengths and weaknesses, a good interviewer will be able to overlook small skill gaps and see your real potential.
Good luck out there, and happy hunting!