Looking for a job and landing one are two different things.
Want to find one? No problem, we’ve got plenty of them.
Want to land one? Be prepared to work for it.
Applying for a job doesn’t require a great deal of manual labour or time. But you’ve got to approach it the right way.
Far too many job seeking professionals take the lazy copycat approach.
They go to apply for a job, paste in some pre-written text and hit ‘send’ so often it’s like their finger’s got a nervous twitch.
Here’s the problem…
Employers, business owners, and entrepreneurs aren’t dumb. In fact, they are usually quite a smart bunch.
And while you may think it’s a numbers game, the more applications you send out the better, that’s not always the case.
“I got an email the other day from an applicant. He didn’t even bother to include a message in the body of his email. Just his resume!”
That quote comes from an employer I spoke with. What do you think your chances are of landing that job? I’d say….hmm…..none!
If you want to stand out from the crowd and increase your chances of landing a great gig, here are a few steps for you to follow:
- Research the company before you apply. That way you can sound knowledgeable about their company when you apply. Including a few mentions of their business, market, products, etc earns you brownie points!
- Write a personal message for each job you apply for. There’s nothing wrong with using pieces of a previous message. Just don’t slam the whole thing in their each time.
- Make sure your message focuses on how you can help the company fill the needs they have. Remember, they have a problem, you bring a solution, that’s why they are hiring you.
- Be clear and concise. Your writing should get straight to the point. The easier you make it for the employer to read your message the better. Hints: Short paragraphs, bolded headers for key points, bullet points.
- Your email message is your cover letter. There’s no need to include a cover letter as an attachment. Your resume is the attachment smarty pants.
- Build trust. Tell the employer what experience you have and don’t be shy to tell them about any challenges you’ve faced and how you overcame them.
- Make your resume pop. Still using a template from Microsoft Word for your resume? Time for a tune up. You can keep it clean and easy to read and still make your resume stand out and look more professional.
Take the Test
There’s an easy test you can take check if your cover letter and resume are up to par. Put yourself in the employer’s shoes. If you received a cover letter and resume that looked like yours what kind of reaction would you have? Would it stand out? Show your experience and skills and why you are right for this job? If yes, send away. If not, take the time to fix the areas that need attention. 20 minutes to an hour of time now could land you your dream gig. Worth it? I’d say so.