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by Caroline Ceniza-Levine | May 14, 2009


Many candidates worry about the pauses in a search – betweenwhen the resume is dropped off and an interview is scheduled, betweeninterviews, between the last interview and an offer decision.  How do you know when to check in?  It all depends on what you agreed uponat the outset.  This is why youwant to ask what the employer’s timetable is and with whom exactly you shouldfollow up.  That said, if you needto check in more times than you expected to move the search along, by all meanscheck in but focus on deepening your relationship with the other person, notjust the job at hand.

Don’t make every communication a check-in about your jobsearch.  Turn the tables, and focuson helping your contacts.  Givefreely.  It takes the pressure offof making the perfect pitch (you’re no longer pitching!).  Yet, it yields enormous benefits ofkeeping yourself out there and building a reputation as someone who is helpfuland motivated. 


  • Say thank you. Thank them for working on the search;
  • Give a results update. Tell them what is happening in other areas of your life;
  • Send an article. You should be reading about their industry and company anyway;
  • Congratulate. If you hear good news about them or their company, point it out;
  • Make a referral. You should be checking their open positions to ensure that you stay ontop of their needs.  If you knowsomeone good, pass that on;
  • Make a match. If you read a good book, try a good restaurant, etc, pass that on;
  • Wish holiday greetings or ask about summer vacation plans;
  • Solve a business problem.  As you read about the company or industry, offer anintelligent or creative idea.


When it comes to interviewing and networking, people tend tofocus (and fear) the first meeting. But the real benefits (and decisions made) are in the follow-up.  A lot of people can get onemeeting.  Not everyone can buildlasting relationships.  Take thefocus off yourself and you actually improve the odds in your favor.


Caroline Ceniza-Levine is co-founder of SixFigureStart (, a careercoaching firm comprised of former Fortune 500 recruiters. 



Filed Under: Interviewing

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