Running late to a job interview can surely give you heart palpitations. The position you longingly applied for might be slipping through your grasp, you surmise, as you weave your way through traffic or scramble to put on your pants. You then imagine an annoyed hiring manager quickly checking your name off a list and slamming the door in your face.
But, as content marketer Richard Moy writes in The Daily Muse, there are tactful ways to salvage that interview, even if you’re hopelessly -- or chronically -- tardy to important meetings. Moy provided helpful templates that you -- the frantic, would-be employee scrambling to catch his or her breath -- can send to your hiring manager while the clock ticks.
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If you have a reasonable excuse for running late, try this handy template:
Hi [Name of Interviewer],
I’m so looking forward to our interview today, but wanted to let you know that [your reason for being late]. In spite of this, I anticipate arriving at [a time based on your best guess for how many minutes behind you’re running].
I apologize for the inconvenience and completely understand if this new time does not work with your schedule today. If that’s the case, would you be open to rescheduling? I’m available [provide two or three times and dates] if that would be more convenient for you.
Thanks so much,
Being opaque about your reasons for tardiness never hurts, as Moy clearly points out, and a profuse apology seems to go a long way. But when it comes down to it, you might want to emphasize a healthy night's sleep, as some experts suggest cancelling the interview altogether in the event of unforeseen circumstances. This should come as no surprise, as research shows 70% of executives would discount an applicant if they show up to an interview late.
Tactfully apologizing seems to be a best-practice here, and notifying the hiring manager as quickly as possible is always the right course, as Kristi Jones, manager of talent acquisition for human resources at H&R Block says: "Don’t call several hours later or even the next day...Your chances of getting the interview rescheduled decrease greatly.”
Follow these steps, and don't forget to set your alarm for an early morning interview. Otherwise you'll be a master at crafting apologetic emails and getting hired by the skin of your teeth. Oh yeah, and never forget to polish that resume.
[h/t The Daily Muse]
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