Effective Follow-Up Letters After Interviews for Sales
At the Interview
- Pay close attention to the people that you are speaking to during your interview. Get business cards from everyone and make notes on the cards regarding what you spoke about and how long you spoke to each person. Every person you spoke to will get a thank-you letter. But the people that you spent the most time with are those that will be involved in the final hiring decision, and they should be part of your ongoing follow-up process when the interview is over.
- Each person you spoke to should get a brief letter thanking them for their time and giving your contact information should they need to ask you any questions. When you write the letters to the people you spent more time with, include a summary of the topics you discussed and what you enjoyed about the conversation. For example, if you spoke to the departmental sales manager and he discussed new sales territories with you, then comment on how you feel the new territories will increase sales coverage. It shows that you were paying attention in the interview and it also indicates that you understand the detail involved in the sales process by offering such a comprehensive follow-up letter.
- In your interview, be sure to get information on the hiring process the company will use. Most specifically, you are interested in how long the company will be doing preliminary interviews prior to moving on to the next interview stage. A few days prior to the deadline that the company indicated for the preliminary interviews, send a secondary follow-up letter to the people that you considered to be the decision-makers in the interview process. Remind them that you are available for a second interview, and also include a brief summary of what you discussed in your first interview.
- If the deadline passes for second interviews, then you may have to accept the fact that the company is not interested. But in sales, persistence will often pay off, and showing persistence to a hiring sales manager can help your cause for getting a second interview. A week after the deadline for second interviews that was given to you in your initial interview, send out a final follow-up letter to each person you spoke to the first time. This general letter should remind the company of the content and date of your first interview. If you have any changes to your resume, such as sales courses you have taken or other interviews that you have gone on, then include that in the letter as well. The sales courses will show that you take your career seriously, and the indication of other interviews will show that you may not be available to hire and may put a sense of urgency in the company's hiring managers.