Handwritten or Email?
After my most recent interview, I started to sit down and write a thank you letter to the interviewer on one of my “thank you” cards that I purchased a while back. After realizing that my penmanship (when writing in a very small space) has taken a hit after all these years of sending emails, messaging, texting and etc… I began to wonder if sending out a hand written thank you card even matters any more. Is it even considered more meaningful then sending exactly what you are writing as an email?
By sending it as an email, it’s instantaneous and clear. There’s no issue of wondering if the writing is legible or coming across in a professional manner. You also do not have to worry if it was “lost in the mail” or shuffled into some indiscriminate pile at the employer’s office. In contrast, when sending a hand written letter, it’s more personal and shows that you took the time to think about the person. It also reflects that you’re willing to physically write out and mail your note to them. Yet, I still find that I spend the same amount of time thinking about what I am going to say, whether I am writing or emailing it. That part does not change. The difference for me is the time it takes to actually pen the note by hand and in my case the effort I went through to ensure it was professional looking.
To compensate for my penmanship and the fact that it was angling downward to the right side, I realized that when time and money permits, I need to go and involve myself in a penmanship class to correct this issue. I also had to use a ruler and a pencil to outline very faint lines to keep my writing straight. Further, in an effort to ensure my penmanship looked cleaner, I wrote out my note in pencil in a very light manner and then traced over that with the actual pen. Later, I used an eraser to remove all the pencil markings.
However, this attention to detail and care is not something that will be noticed by the employer. In an interview prior to this last one, I didn’t send out a thank you card, instead I sent out an email to the three people that interviewed me and I can tell you that I didn’t get a better or worse response with the emailed “thank you” letter vs. the handwritten attempt. So, the question still remains, does it really matter to mail out a handwritten “thank you” letter after an interview or is email a fully acceptable manner to send such a letter, with the exception of those niche people that may actually consider the hand written note a reflection on a person’s professionalism and quality?
Ouch: Oh and one other thing, I need to buy better pens cause my middle finger was destroyed after pressing so hard on the pen I was using to write with. Any high quality (and very comfortable), pen suggestions? :-p