The importance of following up after rejection

LegalJob was recently asked the following question:

Q: I've been turned down by a regional office of [an AmLaw 100 firm] (R1) after many, many interviews. However, the headquarters (HQ) of the firm instructed the regional office to forward my materials to another regional office (R2) of the firm for interviews there. I've interacted with approximately 5 people at R1, HQ, and R2, and sent them all thank you notes (but via email -- not physical ones like LegalJob advises) after the interviews. At this stage, should I write any of them another thank-you note?

Good question and good to be thinking in terms of follow-up and additional reasons to contact the people with whom you met.

Consider the following thoughts:

1. It does not seem like another thank-you note would do much good at this point (and you want to try not to be seen as too aggressive/desperate and hurt your chances).

2. Consider reaching out to one or more of the folks with whom you met for feedback as to why you were turned down.  Is it something you can control and at least fix for the next interview?  If so, that would be a reason for an additional contact.  Perhaps there was some miscommunication that you can easily clear up or perhaps you did not articulate your experience as well as you could have or perhaps you did not interview well period and that opinion would be helpful for you to know.  Consider asking for brutal honesty, as it should be helpful to you in the future.  Perhaps the issue is stylistic and one that you can work on for future interviews.  Maybe you were perceived as anxious, nervous, or out of sync with the firm culture.

LegalJob is guessing that this is not the case since you were turned down after "many, many interviews."  That fact suggests that you may have been rejected for reasons outside your control. For example, there was no need for your skill set in that particular office.  Thought that begs the question of why you were asked back multiple times.  If it is the case that there is no place for you in one office, then the best path may be to take the temperature of your contact at HQ and try to determine the needs of the other offices and seek recommendations as to how best stay on their radar screen.

3. Following up after you forwarded your original materials is a good idea but you need something to say.  If you have additional experience or grades or something else to update your candidacy, that could be helpful and a reason for an additional contact.

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