You’ve finally finished your b-school interview and are thankful to cross this experience off your application to-do list. However, as you wait to receive your acceptance letter, it’s appropriate to also send thank you notes to all of the people who helped you during the day.
Gratitude is key
A thank you email follows a lot of the same rules as other correspondence: a greeting, the purpose of the letter, the essential content, and a closing farewell. However, unlike other emails, a well-written thank-you starts and finishes with gratitude. Capably done, it can elicit an emotional response, create bonds, nurture the development of relationships…and in this case, further the case to accept you!
8 steps to creating a memorable MBA interview thank you letter
Following these tips will assure that your thank-you email is read, appreciated, and remembered. It will bring you one step closer to receiving that acceptance at your top choice MBA program!
- Start with an appropriate greeting. Be sure to address the person formally. Use their relevant title, like Dr. Smith, Professor Jones, or Ms. Johnson. Unless the person encouraged you to use their first name in the interview, show respect and use the more traditional and formal form of address in written correspondence.
- Offer your purpose for writing. Right after the greeting, say something like,“I’m writing to thank you for speaking with me on Monday.”Or,“I’m writing to thank you for the tour of the campus. ”
- Explain how their help or thoughtfulness affected you personally. Make your statement of appreciation meaningful by illustrating specifically how you benefited from the experience. For example: “You were generous with your time, and your insights about the program provided me with a fuller appreciation of what I can gain once admitted.” Or: “I enjoyed the campus tour very much, and particularly appreciated your showing me the new Entrepreneur Idea Lab, which interests me very much.”In addition to pointing out at least one thing that you learned from this individual, describe in specific terms what it meant to you. If you do this well, the reader will take your compliments to heart.
- Show how you learned more about the program from the conversation. Mention particular examples of how their conversation helped you better understand your target program and your goals. What did you discover about the program that you hadn’t known before? Did you find out about an exciting opportunity? Did the person share something they had in common with you that influenced how you view your own positions or goals?
- Include information you had offered to provide or any final questions you have. The adcom has noted any follow-ups needed from you, so this is also an ideal opportunity to provide it. Offering this in your thank-you note shows initiative and good judgment that you take seriously the adcom’s request for more information about you.If any questions occurred to you after your interaction with the person, this is the place to ask. Don’t make up a question to have something to ask – you don’t want to appear insincere or make the note too long.
- If you have any significant additional information, provide it. Is there something you wish you had said during your interview but didn’t? Squeeze in this last-minute, but substantial point, in a succinct paragraph at the end of your note. This should be reserved only for information of substance, such as new publications, awards, or grades. Although you want to send your thank you note as soon as possible, it’s worth it to wait a day or two if you anticipate receiving meaningful updates.
- Keep it brief. We’ve suggested writing a number of important things, but they need to be done in crisp, concise language. And by all means, your last line should restate your authentic gratitude for their time and consideration.
- Check your spelling and grammar. After doing your own proofread, have someone else with a keen editorial eye also check for typos, spelling and grammar errors before you send it off. It can be very hard to catch them yourself if you have been looking at the letter over and over again. Any errors will reflect poorly on you, despite the sincerity of your ideas.
NOW you can wait
Let’s say as you think back on your interview that you feel you made mistakes, had “unforced errors,” or missed certain opportunities. Please don’t dwell on any mistakes, real or imagined. You may not have answered every interview question perfectly. In fact, you’ll probably think of better ways you wish you could have answered some questions, worn a more sophisticated outfit, or expressed a more confident “Goodbye” as you left.
Just think positive thoughts about the outcome you wish for. You probably did better than you thought, and now it’s time to look ahead to the future and hope for the best.
Haven’t interviewed yet? We can help you! Prep one-on-one with an experienced MBA advisor when you check out Accepted’s Mock MBA Interview Services. And when you’re done, we’ll help you write those post-interview thank yous!
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