It’s a fact that’s sad but true (and super useful to your success): very few people are willing to go the extra mile. And even saying “mile” is probably overstating it. Very few people are willing to go an extra few feet. Which is lucky, right? Because you’re one of the few that will go the distance. And here are a few suggestions for how to do it.
- Get a custom portfolio printed. You have your online portfolio and you have the print portfolio you carry with you to each interview. But if you really want a certain job and you really want to wow them, get a custom portfolio printed. There are plenty of websites that do it (Snapfish, CafePress, etc.) or you could even just take your work to Kinko’s, but if you get a custom printed, bound portfolio that says something along the lines of “John Smith for the position of Copywriter at ABC Associates) across the front, you are sure to make an impression.
- Okay so you’re interested enough to get a custom portfolio book printed for a job. Now, are you interested enough to get one printed before you even get the interview? Of course you are! Instead of sending in just your cover letter and your resume, why not send in your cover letter, your resume and your custom-printed portfolio right off the bat. This shows the receiver just how serious you are about getting the interview. And bonus points if you get it all couriered over instead of sending it through the mail. Will this cost a little bit? Yes. So I don’t recommend you do it for every job. But for the ones you really want, the ones that really keep you up at night, this is the way to go.
- Hand-write thank you notes—but don’t send them. First of all, it’s already classy to hand-write thank you notes instead of emailing them. But if you send them through the mail, it might take them several days to get to the rightful receiver. (Heck, I once got a thank you note from an applicant that showed up weeks later because our mailroom was inefficient.) So, if you really want to make an impression, I recommend hand-writing thank you notes and having them delivered the next day, instead of sending them through the mail. That way, they’re guaranteed to get there and get there fast. Classy!
- If you don’t get the job, thank HR. If, unfortunately, things should come to pass and you don’t end up getting the job, you’ll still want to finish things up the straight-up classy way. In this scenario, send a hand-written thank you note to the HR representative you met with. Thank him/her for the opportunity, restate some of the things that you particularly liked about the company and let him/her know that you hope to get another opportunity at some point in the future. Essentially, you’re saying that there are no hard feelings and you’d take their call in the future. You’re a professional. And some day, if not today, they’re going to want you on staff.
Which straight-up classy technique are you going to implement first? Let us know in the comments!