Walking The Fine Line Between Persistent and Annoying

The interview is over.  It’s time to follow-up.  Most experienced career advisers believe that following-up with a potential employer after an interview is a must.  While it can be an e-mail or short handwritten note, it gives you the opportunity to express your interest in the job and remain fresh in the employer’s mind.  (Although a handwritten note may be more thoughtful, in today’s market, time is of the essence and nothing beats the efficiency of e-mail.)  So, what should this follow-up include?  Make sure to include the following:

1.  Thank you!

2.  A reference to something you discussed, as this will be a point of reference for the employer.

3.  A comment about your interest in the job.

4.  Thank you! (again).


Now, the follow-up letter isn’t difficult for most people and it’s become relatively standard in today’s job search.  But what happens if you don’t hear back from them for a week or two.  Do you call?  Do you e-mail?  What?  Before you start getting all anxious because they haven’t called you back, realize that today’s employers are forced to look through four to five times as many applicants then a couple years ago.  This process may take a while.  A great way to avoid this frustration is to ask the employer during the interview about their job search time line.  This will give you an idea of whether or not you may still be considered or if they’ve more than likely hired someone else.  

So, here it is.  Rule of thumb to avoid becoming the Annoying Applicant:


Limit your correspondence with a potential company to one phone call and/or one e-mail per week.


 If you can include a new piece of information or something that may be interesting to the employer, then make sure to do so, but do not be so annoying that you are removed from the application process because they can’t stand you.  As a career adviser, I believe it is important to remain persistent and aggressive; however, don’t allow your persistence to be seen as a flaw.  Continue to show your interest in the opportunities that are available to you and your determination will certainly pay off.


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One Comment on “Walking The Fine Line Between Persistent and Annoying”

  1. tarheelsintransit
    April 8, 2009 at 2:45 pm #

    I just stumbled across your blog and company, and both are great! The advice is succinct and practical. Thanks for the resource. I’ll be adding it to my blog roll (I blog about Web 2.0 job search advice for seniors at my school, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill).

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