7 Times Showing Gratitude Can Help Your Career
This Thanksgiving, Assistant Director for Career Counseling, Rita Soultanian has a few tips on when to show gratitude in your career.
As Thanksgiving nears, we’re reminded of the power of gratitude. Though, while we have a whole holiday to take time out and be grateful for family, friends, and turkey, we often don’t take enough time to show gratitude in our professional lives as well. Here’s a friendly reminder of all the times throughout your career when a little bit of thanks can go a very long way.
1. WHEN YOU MEET SOMEONE
People are busy, so if someone spends more than 20 minutes with you, whether it was for coffee, a professor, a family friend, or even a stranger, it’s appropriate to express thanks. It doesn’t take much to ask for a business card, and send a follow up email to thank someone for their time, and ask to stay in touch (networking bonus!).
2. WHEN YOU ATTEND A PRESENTATION, PANEL, OR SPEAKER EVENT
If you attend a conference formally, or simply happen upon a fantastic presentation be it in a panel or speaker format; take the time to thank the presenter(s) for their contribution to your development. This can be the quickest and easiest way to stand out among a sea of listeners whose majority will never lift a finger to make themselves known to the expert at the front of the room. This displays confidence, especially if you took the time to shake the speaker’s hand after the presentation itself.
3. WHEN YOU ASK SOMEONE TO SERVE AS A REFERENCE
If a former supervisor offers to provide a glowing reference for you in your current job hunt, it’s the least you can do to thank them.
4. AFTER AN INTERVIEW
Anytime you get the opportunity to interview for a job, it is expected that you send a thank you note after the interview. Let the employer know that you appreciated the opportunity to meet with them, and that you continue to be interested in the position after having a face to face discussion. Go one step further and mention something specific from the conversation that you found especially valuable to pack a mean punch, and possibly land yourself a new job!
5. AFTER AN INFORMATIONAL INTERVIEW
If a professional is generous to discuss their career path with you or explains their position, company, or industry, it can provide you with valuable insight into a particular career path. Whether you choose to send a hand-written note, or hammer out a quick email, it’s important to acknowledge that this person has taken time out of his/her busy schedule to accommodate your request.
6. WHEN YOU JOB SHADOW
Every so often you’ll come across a professional who’s willing to let you invade their space and shadow them for a few hours, a day, or if you’re lucky, a few days. Be sure to thank them whole heartedly because it’s the next best thing to an internship when it comes to determining if a particular work setting is a good fit for you.
7. WHEN SAYING GOODBYE
Anytime you’re leaving a full-time position, internship, or even a significant leadership role in a club or organization on campus, a great way to end things is to send thoughtful thanks to your mentor, supervisor, or advisor. Make sure they are talking about you long after you leave.
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