… the HR Minion. Because even minions have opinions. And giggles.

My handwriting sucks

Now, proper old school job hunting etiquette tells us that you need to send a handwritten thank you note after an interview. Break out the stationery and your best cursive because an email just won’t do. It’s an important difference. Why? Well, it’s a professional gesture with a personal touch. Also, very few people send thank you notes period, much less handwritten ones, so it can help you stand out. I get that and it totally makes sense. But here’s my biggest problem with it: My handwriting sucks. It’s like seriously bad. Like so bad, it would make me stand out alright, just not in a good way.

I know I’m not alone on this. Think about it, when was the last time you hand wrote a letter instead of typed out an email? Or never mind the email , just sent a text? The only person I write letters to is my Nana, because she can’t figure out how to use a computer mouse, and even then I print instead of use cursive. Additionally, depending on the level of job you are applying for, the hiring decision may already have been made before the mail can be delivered. And there are better, more effective ways of standing out to a hiring manager than sending a handwritten thank you note. Does it sound like I’m just trying to justify, and thus enable, my use of emailed thank you notes? Maybe. Oh hell, you and I both know that the real reason I use email is just because my handwriting is laughably bad, never mind the other reasons. The point is: I still send a thank you note, even if it is by email, and job hunting is stressful enough without me worrying about my lack of handwriting skills. So how about you? Do you send thank you notes? Does your handwriting suck too?

8 Responses | Add your Own

  • 1 Joan E Ginsberg :

    I send handwritten thank you notes. It’s a generational thing,I think. As a boomer, I was actually graded on cursive from the third grade on. My mother couldn’t tolerate me getting “C”s in handwriting, so I was made to do hours and hours and hours of exercises to improve my handwriting. SO my handwriting is pretty nice. 🙂

    I think a thank you note is imperative, but I personally think email is okay. I just prefer old stuff.

  • 2 Shaun Emerson :

    My handwriting is horrible and I don’t even think about handwritten notes anymore…In fact, when I get one, I wonder why they didn’t send me an email…

  • 3 Rebecca :

    I always send thank you, and it’s usually hand-written. Exceptions where I would use e-mail are if I know the timeline is super-short or if they person has made any kind of comment in the interview that makes me think they prefer e-mail, for example, “please feel free to get in touch with me if you have any further questions, e-mail is really the best way to reach me.”

    For the kind of job I’m looking for right now (financial planning,) writing thank you notes is actually something I would expect to do in the job, so I consider it a chance to both be polite and to show I understand the importance of a personal touch.

  • 4 Shauna :

    Joan – Nice, I wish I had nice handwriting.

    Shaun – Lol!

    Rebecca – Very cool, that makes a lot of sense.

  • 5 C.K. :

    I’m writing thank you notes right now, but they’re not for interviews, they’re for graduation gifts. I tried writing cursive until my 6th attempt on the first one and decided to print.

    You shouldn’t have any trouble finding a job in financial planning. Different companies keep calling me and I keep turning them down because that is not what I’m looking for. I have now been contacted by 5 different companies, and a few of those have called me again after I turned them down the first time. They’re like wolves, and there are so many of them.

  • 6 oliviacw :

    I work in a tech field – an email is a perfectly valid means of communicating. Heck, it wouldn’t surprise me to get a thank you note via IM! However, a text message might be pushing it.

    In my field, I think a paper-based thank you note would be perfectly fine to send after the email thank you, but I do think the email thank you – in terms of speed – is the best approach. I’ve often seen hiring decisions made within a day or two of the interview, and waiting for snail mail just wouldn’t cut it.

  • 7 Jim aka Evil Skippy at Work :

    We must be related — my handwriting not only sucks, it isn’t even interesting. Some people have messy handwriting but it is still legible (enough) AND it looks artistic in some strange way. Not me. I’ve started typing part of the note, but I use note cards instead of 8 x 11 stationery. After I scribble my signature, I very slowly write a few personal words. It looks sort of casual, the main (typed) text can easily be read and I make my mother, grandmother and Miss Manners happy by sending a thank you note at all.

  • 8 Shauna :

    C.K. – Yeah, my print isn’t much better sometimes. 🙂

    Oliviacw – Yeah, industry does matter a lot, you need to know your audience.

    Jim – That’s very smart! I may have to steal that.