How to communicate the right level of interest in a potential job
If you’re proceeding with the hiring process, it would help you to moderate the tone of your interest. (Shutterstock)
There is a fine line to walk between showing enough interest in a job opening and being pushy. For many people, saying they are interested in a job opportunity comes naturally while communicating with a hiring manager.
But expressing interest doesn’t end at one statement in an initial cover letter. In fact, you must reiterate that you’re still interested throughout the process, which can be done in actions or words. The catch is when too much interest can backfire.
To reach this delicate balance, you must know how to express your interest subtly, and present yourself as motivated and excited about the job because you are the right fit. This takes a lot more than just a statement in an email, although written communication also matters.
To ensure that you’re communicating the right dose of interest, keep the following points in mind.
Avoid too much too soon
Don’t try to speed up the process by asking to jump to the next step. Although it is a good idea to follow up and inquire about the progress of the hiring process, don’t pressure the hiring manager for more information that what’s already presented to you. For example, if the hiring manager is still in the screening phase, don’t ask about the details of a potential job offer. Try to stay in pace of the hiring process to avoid the image of being pushy or desperate.
Additionally, one phone call with a hiring manager doesn’t make you this person’s best friend. Yes, you might choose to connect with them on LinkedIn or send a thank-you email afterward, but by no means don’t feel the liberty to pick up the phone and call back whenever some question crosses your mind. Instead, take your time to think about any questions or issues that you need to clarify and drop them one email.
Explain your interest
People are more likely to remember you and your interest in the job if you explain why. So instead of saying that the job, for example, is a great opportunity, explain why you think so. What experience that you have and matches the job requirements. Give the hiring manager a proof that your interest isn’t just for landing any job, but for the fact that you see this particular job as a good fit.
Similarly take opportunities that warrant a statement of continued interest. For example, after a key interview or meeting with staff, send a note that explain why your meeting contributed to a better understanding of the job and how it fits.
Avoid statements of desperation
If you’re proceeding with the hiring process, it would help you to moderate the tone of your interest. While you want your hiring manager to know that you are interested, you also don’t want to appear desperate for this particular job. Be responsive but don’t be overly eager. Explain why it is a good move for your career, but don’t appear to be willing to dump your current employer in a blink.
Again it is a matter of balance. You should maintain a constant flow of positive signals without presenting yourself without options. In addition, if the hiring process extends over several weeks or months, reduce the frequency of your communication. Stay focused on your job and pursue other job opportunities as they come up. By doing so, you’re sure that you’re not missing out on different possibilities, in addition to making it clear to your prospective employer that you’re employable. Only if you’re close to having an offer in hand from another employer, you can follow up to see how the hiring process is going. Don’t use this technique to put pressure on an employer, however. It probably won’t change the speed of hiring unless you’re a top candidate, which is a position that you don’t want to miss out.
By Rania Oteify
- Reconsidering the fork and knife hegemony: how cultural intelligence can land you the job of your dreams
- Public-private partnerships may be key to take Gulf's economic growth to next level
- Job interviews: How to do them right
- Your cover letter will tell if you’re the right person for the job: The do’s and don’ts
- Job search getting you nowhere? Avoid these potentially fatal flaws