Five common mistakes all job candidates want to avoid - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Five common mistakes all job candidates want to avoid


MADISON (WKOW) -- Deanna Perlmutter recently landed a sales job in the food services industry.

She assumed hundreds would be up for the position, so she went the extra mile to gain an upper edge on the competition.

"I sent a thank you note to everyone that I met to differentiate myself from the other people that were interviewing for the position," Perlmutter says.

It's a rule of etiquette job experts say is critical for candidates to follow after the interview.

"Many times HR directors will weed out the pile between those who send notes and those who don't," says business training consultant Barbara Pachter.

But a simple thank you is overlooked.

In a recent survey of employers, 33 percent said they receive thank you notes half the time.

Another 32 percent said they rarely receive them at all, a faux paux that can send the wrong message.

"When you don't send one that absence is really noticed. What else are you not going to do? What working protocols are you not going to follow?" Pachter says.

To be in good graces, send thank yous out immediately after the interview.

If timing is crucial, sending an email is appropriate. But don't be too long winded.

"A thank you note is just that, it's a note. It's not a 5 page letter. You want to reiterate in a very short fashion some of your skills and what you can bring to the job," Prachter says.

Avoid common mistakes that could also take you out of the running, like typos, spelling errors and the use of incorrect grammar and as tempting as it might be, don't try to correct any blunders made during the interview.

"You're hoping that people forget it and when you mention it, it brings it to the person's forefront, so by and large it's usually best to let it go," Prachter says.

Deanna believes her short and simple thank you's helped her land the job. She strongly advises other job seekers to take the time to do the same.

"The economy is so bad that you have to do everything you can to get a job, so if you send a thank you note, it helps in the end, I mean, why not do everything you can?"

Another common mistake that has been known to cost eager candidates the job, harassing HR managers with follow up calls.

Pachter's advice - wait it out. Send your thank you's and wait at least two to three weeks before following up with a phone call.

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