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Monday, October 5, 2009

saying thank-you after getting job rejection feedback

If you ask someone who rejected you for a job for feedback about how you could do better next time and that person takes the time to respond, you really, really should follow up with at least a "thank you."

Giving that feedback is not obligatory, and many employers ignore those requests. If someone takes the time to help you, that person is doing you a favor. You should thank them.

When I take the time to help someone with feedback and get silence in return, I remember it.


Melissa said...

I would think that a thank-you note in that situation would be a common courtesy. If someone goes out of their way like that to give an applicant information that could help him/her land a job elsewhere, that person ought to show a little gratitude.

Anonymous said...

I couldn't agree more with your post. It is funny you post this, though, as today I received a blank form letter from a job I applied to almost 10 months ago (the post closed in February 2009). It was supposed to give reasons why I was not being further considered for this job but none of the boxes were checked. There was a line where someone could sign to verify. It was also blank. I was really thrilled to know that the federal government (of course) is at least employing people to stuff envelopes and apply postage.

Anonymous said...

I agree, too. I've taken this a step further and am sending out a thank you even if I do not ask for feedback (or get the inclination that I would be blown off). To me, a job search is about leaving a good impression all the time and if me taking five minutes to write a note leaves a good impression for any future opportunity, it was worth every second.

Rick Saia said...

To the second "Anonymous": I agree, especially if it's a company you'd like to work for. You want to make that last impression a lasting impression so that they might remember you for the next suitable opening.

Anonymous said...

still appalled that people have to be told to do things like this.

Anonymous said...

Any job applicant would be a fool not to thank someone for truly useful, thought provoking constructive criticism, but there's no reason to respond with "thank you" if the feedback was vague, unhelpful, or rude.

Ask a Manager said...

I'm not sure I agree with that, Anonymous.

Feedback may be vague because the employer doesn't have time to go into full-scale coaching, but they still deserve a thank-you for trying to offer some.

Unhelpful is probably in the eye of the beholder.

And rude -- well, unless they tell you that they thought you were ugly or something like that, it's hard to imagine feedback being rude without still shedding some light on the question you asked them: why you didn't get the job. Sometimes the answer to that question isn't comfortable to hear, but they still deserve thanks for telling you (perhaps more so in those cases, since they were willing to say it even though it felt awkward).