Why It’s OK To Send That Follow Up Email

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redit: nycprgirls.com

By: Jess Stefanowicz, Account Executive for The Ghana Cookbook

We all know how it goes. You find that perfect internship opportunity, a job opening that catches your eye, or you’ve scored the email address of a professional who you hope can one day become a mentor. You spend what feels like hours tweaking your resume, and constructing the perfect email. You click send, and constantly refresh your inbox the rest of the day awaiting a reply. And then you wait some more, and eventually it becomes weeks later when you finally come to the realization your email was lost in no-man’s land. It can be a crummy realization, but the fact is many industry professionals are getting hundreds of emails a day, and your email that you thought was perfectly crafted may not have been enough to grab the recipient’s attention. So how can you ensure that you’re doing everything you can to get that reply? You follow up.

I know what you may be thinking: ‘Won’t I come off as desperate?’ If they didn’t answer the first time, doesn’t that mean a no? The answer’s no! One thing I have learned in my time as an Account Executive and as an intern at a few different companies is that your follow up is often what can get you that response in your inbox.

The success of your initial contact and your follow up is all in the timing. I learned from one of my mentors that one should always try and follow “The 3 Day Rule.” Typically an initial email at the beginning of the week, on a Monday or Tuesday, gives you time to create a follow-up for that following Thursday or Friday, or maybe the next Monday. By waiting at least 3 days, you are giving ample amount of time for your sender to see your email and decide on a response time, without being too hasty in asking for a response or second look. Often, your email may be put in the “I’ll get to it later” pile (figuratively or literally) in your recipient’s inbox. Sending a follow up the next day or two after your initial email for something that is not urgent isn’t professional, and can come off as a little aggressive.

Furthermore, your follow up email should be very precise and serve only as a reminder that you have reached out previously to the recipient. You should never demand a response or ask directly if they got your email. Recap the most important parts of your initial email, opening the email with something along the lines of “I wanted to follow up with you on my initial inquiry this past Monday. I am (insert purpose here). I would love to connect with you and discuss this job opportunity/a meeting for coffee further.” A polite follow up email should present itself as a reminder that your initial email does exist, making it much more likely for the recipient to take a second to go back and give your outreach a more careful consideration.

Always remember that at the end of the day, your email does matter, and just because your response does not come in 24 hours does not mean it’s not important. With the right wording, and the right timing, the odds may end up working in your favor.

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Simple Interview Questions You Have Been Answering Wrong

Four candidates competing for one position. Having CV in his hand
Credit: http://apprenticeshipsinscotland.com/

By: Neena Zona, Account Executive for Sweet Heat Gourmet 

Interview season is upon us as students are looking for jobs for once they graduate, internships, or holiday season jobs to make extra cash while home. For some, interviewing is something that causes a lot of anxiety, but interviewing does not have to be so hard. Here are three common interview questions and how to best answer them:

1. Could you tell me a little about yourself?

            This is the question that most interviewers start out with. While it seems like an easy one, most everyone messes it up. This is because you are not use to talking about yourself and all that you do in less than one minute. Here’s the trick, you want to pick two or three experiences that you want your interviewer to know about the most. Then tie it into why those experiences would qualify you for this job.

2. Why should we hire you?

            This is another simple question but again one that can easily mess up your interview. When answering this question you have to make sure that you can relate something that this job will require of you, to something you are good at and have experience with. Your interviewer is essentially asking you to sell them on you being the best person for the job. So make sure you are prepared to tell them why it is in their best interest to hire you!

3. Do you have any questions for me?

            This is the question that most interviews will end with. To make sure you leave a good impression you need to prepare at least two questions to ask. These questions should be used to show your interest in the company and that you have done research on the job and the company. Good examples are, “What are the next steps in the interview process?” or “What are your expectations for this role during the first 30 days, 60 days, year?” You also want to make sure that you do not ask about salaries or benefits, these are questions you want to save for when they offer you the job.

Making sure that you have practiced these simple questions is what can set you above the rest of the candidates. So make sure before your next interview to study these questions and do your research about the company. Happy Hunting!

By: Emily Grabowski, Consulting Director

While all other majors across the spectrum prepare to go home to enjoy their winter break and the holiday season, communications majors are gearing up for the season a bit differently.  We are all well versed in the area of applying for summer internships, and even internships during the fall and spring semesters while we are away at school.  Not many communications majors think about holding internships during their winter break, and why they are actually extremely beneficial in terms of launching a career and maintaining connections within the communications field.

Here are five reasons why YOU should apply for a winter internship this season:

  1. This may be the only chance you have to apply your skills to real-world situations.

For most of us, we spend our summers working in restaurants or in retail, hoping to save up some spare cash for the busy school year.  The summer monthly can be very hectic for most due to traveling, working and spending time with family.  If you aren’t able to intern during the summer or even during the semesters due to a heavy course load, what better way to get experience than interning during the month-long winter break?

  1. You are able to stay connected with industry professionals during the middle of the year.

A winter internship enables you to network with even more industry professionals during the “lighter” season where companies are not only beginning to think about hiring new employees, but when the workload is not as heavy and there is more time to personally get to know the people you may be working with.  A winter internship is an extra bonus that can help you enhance your list of professionals to network with and maintain steady relationships with until graduation.

  1. Stay on the couch vs. stay updated with industry news.

As tempting as it is to spend the entire month at home relaxing and eating all of the holiday goodies you can find (can’t forget binge watching many shows on Netflix), it is much more productive and beneficial to do a short internship or even shadow a company in your area that interests you.  This is the best way to decide what type of company you may want to work for in the future. This wise way of spending your time will make you feel a lot better looking back on your break once you return back to school in the spring.

  1. The more experiences you take on, the better!

You should never miss an opportunity to learn new things.  With each internship, you learn new skills, gain more contacts and improve your communications.  A one month long winter internship could lead to a potential job down the road if you go above and beyond the tasks expected of you.

  1. Going outside of your comfort zone may pleasantly surprise you.

Winter internships are perfect for trying something you are unsure about or something that may be foreign to you.  If you want to experience a start-up PR firm but feel as though it may not be for you, what better way to try it out then doing a short, one month internship?  The amount of time allotted for winter internships is perfect for getting a feel for the company, but it isn’t long enough that you have to stay committed to that company or position.

 Although I have only highlighted a few benefits of obtaining a winter internship, the possibilities are truly endless.  Short-term internships help you network, stay up-to-date on industry news, weed out positions you may or may not want to take on in the future, and build upon your resume.  To get started on the winter internship search, check out InternQueen.com and filter your internship search by selecting “Winter” under the semester category.  You can also utilize LinkedIn and use the Job Search tool to filter for Winter Internships in areas near your hometown.  For any other questions or advice about winter internships, feel free to contact me at emilygrabowski13@gmail.com.  Happy Internship Hunting!