You Are Sending Thank You Notes, Right?

You just had an informational interview, an actual job interview, or even just a chance encounter that was beneficial to your job search. Do you immediately send a hand-written thank you note?

Yes. The answer is always yes.

A new study confirms that you should break out the pen and nice stationary, and write a quick and earnest thank you note to the person.

Thank You Notes Make Everyone Happy

The study found that found that people routinely underestimate the value of expressing gratitude.

The vast majority of thank you note recipients rated themselves a five on the happiness scale (the highest possible level) and between an eight and nine on the surprise scale after reading the note.

Such a huge impact with such a small action.

Thank You Notes Get You the Job

Way back in 2004, I was dreaming of working in ICT4D while toiling away in accounting. By chance, I was able to meet with the VP of a company that ran Geekcorps – a Peace Corps for geeks.

After our meeting, I wrote him a quick thank you note. Nothing special – just that I enjoyed meeting him, expressed my support for the Geekcorps mission, and promised to apply as a volunteer.

A few months later, they posted a job ad, I applied, and I became the director of Geekcorps.

After I’d been working there a while, I asked him how I got the job.  They certainly had many candidates to choose from, most with greater experience in development than me.

He reached into his desk drawer and pulled out my thank you note, and said, “You were the only one who wrote a thank you note.”

Start Writing Thank You Notes Today

Good luck!

What is Your Professional Brand?

Like companies and products, we all have brands. What makes a brand unique is its cohesive story that aligns with its successes, passions, and vision.

Your brand story should state what you’re passionate about in your industry, what you’ve accomplished, and where you eventually want to go.

An Established Brand

If you’ve been in your respective field for some time, it should be easy for you to create your brand story.

Assemble a guide of the key contributions you’ve done in each of your positions – major projects you’ve worked on, notable campaigns you’ve supported, or major product launches you’ve led.

When applying for a job and interviewing be able to romanticize that experience with the HR recruiter and the hiring manager.

Creating a Brand

If you’ve changed careers, align your brand story and experience to assure the company that you can do the job for which you are interviewing with interchangeable skills.

Find a way to show leadership, motivation, time management, delegation, listening, and communication – all great interchangeable skills for any position. Then show how you’ll apply them to the role you desire.

Brand Showtime

Now be prepared to tell your story in an interview in a clear theme that shows what you stand for professionally. You want to sound confident about your experiences, and your story should be real and authentic.

That’s what draws people in: confidently showcasing a strong person brand that is aligned with your experience and future direction.

By Terry Thierry, Digital Storyteller


Recently, a job-hunting friend of mine asked me to review their CV. I flat out refused. Are you surprised?

You might be, as that’s where most people start their job search – stressing over their resume. I refused my friend’s request, not because I didn’t like them or didn’t want to help, but I didn’t want to waste either of our time.

The Resume is Obsolete

If you are working on your resume, you are thinking responding to a job ad with a cover letter and a resume is going to win you a job. It will not.

Now, there is always an exception – and a broken clock is still right twice a day – but that’s not the efficient way to get a new job.

Any job ad, including those in this email, will solicit 100+ resumes. The HR team is going to have a streamlined approach to save the sanity of their recruiters. Generally, a software system will cull out most of the CVs, humans will cull out more, and there will be 3-4 that get to the interview stage.

Focus on What Matters: Networking

Of those 3-4 people who get interviewed, its always 2-3 or even all 4, that are already known in some way to the hiring team. They’re ex-colleagues, friends, friends of friends, and all the other human connections possible.

Only the rare applicant will be truly there because of their CV. Don’t bet that’s going to be you.

Instead, focus on what matters – networking. Yes, the hard, yet exceptionally practical process of getting to know who is working where and what they are looking for in a colleague. Be that potential colleague – network, network, network.

Good luck!


Do you find yourself angry at the current US President? Or are you dismayed by Congress? Then consider using your technology skills to rock the USA vote with DigiDems!

DigiDems is recruiting and placing 100 technologists in Democratic campaigns critical 2018 House and Senate races to support modern campaigning efforts.

DigiDems will train you, match you with a campaign, and provide you with ongoing pay and support. Your role is to work with the campaign to figure out what is most needed: Security? Analytics? Volunteer organizing? You put in place and operate the tools to help them succeed.

After Election Day in November, you will help develop a comprehensive strategy for implementing political tech and data infrastructure for the 2020 elections.

Again, this PAID work – and all the money is committed already from Silicon Valley wealth.

Interested? Apply now, and if you have questions, ask Jeff Wishnie, who just quit his dream digital development job at DIAL to work for DigiDems.



Psychological safety is the shared belief that a team is safe for interpersonal risk taking. It can be defined as saying what you believe without fear of negative consequences of self-image, status or career. In psychologically safe teams, team members feel accepted and respected.

So do you feel psychologically safe?

I ask this question because I had an awesome experience of company-wide psychologically safety at work yesterday. Our larger leadership team met for the day and really dug into lingering issues and new opportunities, and spoke truth to the CEO, our company leaders, and ourselves.

This happens at other firms too, of course, but I’ve found it very rare. Usually, I’m one of the few people brave enough to speak my mind, and I’ve won and lost in doing so.

Love your job if you have psychologically safety

In talking about that session at my work with my colleagues, we were all in agreement that it was an impressive display of psychologically safety for the whole company and that feeling of safety to speak our minds made us really enjoy working here.

If you are also lucky enough to work at an organization with psychologically safety, enjoy it and be proud of such a positive work culture.

And if not… well, that’s the list below is for.