Do I need a cover letter

Do I need a Cover Letter?

Understanding the Purpose of Cover Letters:

So let’s get a little bit of perspective in this. A cover letter takes you from today forwards, written in the personal pronoun, the word “I,” “my,” “he,” or “she.” And a resume or a CV takes you from today backwards. It’s basically a historical document documenting your career history, performance-based, not job description-based. So talking about your accomplishments. So a cover letter takes you from today forwards and a resume CV takes you from today backwards. So in short, right, be bold. Yes, you do need a cover letter. It’s still a very important part of the overall recruitment, the hiring process. And if you don’t have one, that can count you out of a potential interview. So just like the Boy Scouts’ motto, be prepared. Now, if it says on the notice, the job notice when you are applying, “No cover letter required,” well, there you go. That’s pretty simple. But if it doesn’t, err on the side of yes, I think I need to or you do need to have a cover letter if it doesn’t say so. So I would show, I would write a cover letter.

Effort and Customization:

What does it show the potential reader at the other end? It shows that you put a lot of effort because cover letters, you just can’t type them out. You have to think. There’s a lot of components that go into them. And if you want to go to find out what you need to put in a cover letter, go to my YouTube channel where you can subscribe and see some videos on cover letters. If anybody’s got any comments while we’re live online, I’m more than happy to answer any questions to do with career management, not even just talking about today’s topic, cover letters. So please come online, please feel free, and I will answer your question as I go through this.

Importance of Cover Letters:

So, it’s the Boy Scouts’ motto, be prepared. You never know when it’s going to be read. So cover letters show the reader at the other end that you have put a lot of extra effort into it. That’s what they want to see. They want to see that you’re serious about a job search, not just willy-nilly sending off resumes and not really doing anything but changing them or anything. You need to customize each resume, and you need to customize each cover letter. So take a snippet of what they’re looking for and implant it in the cover letter and say how you match that particular asset or skill set that they are looking for. It also sets you apart from other candidates. So if other candidates don’t send a cover letter and you’ve got a cover letter and they were looking for a cover letter, that already sets you apart. I do know what executive recruiters and I do know HR professionals, yes, being very honest here, that never read cover letters, but others that read them back to front, upside down, inside out.

Be Prepared:

So that’s where you need to go back to the Boy Scouts’ motto, be prepared, because you never know. It just takes you another 20 or 30 or 40 minutes to prepare a cover letter. So customize for each application, and that grabs the attention of the hiring authority, whether it be an HR professional or an executive recruiter.

Types of Cover Letters:

So there are five different types of cover letters, main types of cover letter. So let me go through them right now. So there’s a letter in reply to an advert, and then now in that, you tell them why you are the perfect candidate and give them some examples of what they’re looking for in that particular job notice in your cover letter. So it matches that job, you know, and the application to your skill set. And if you’ve got less than, say, 80 percent of skill sets, don’t bother to apply. You’re going to get frustrated because you’re going to get more rejections. Only apply if you have got more than, say, 80 percent of the qualifications. Now, if you haven’t got that 20, that 80 to 20, 80 to 100, be open and be honest and tell them, you know, “However, I would like to draw your attention to the fact that I do not have this or that or whatever. However, I’m a fast learner, and I will sure once on my appointment that I will be very, very positive. I have that skill set within a few short months.” So that shows them at the other end that you really are a powerful, ideal candidate.

Applying to Executive Recruiters:

Tell them in an advert if you haven’t got some skill sets, but don’t apply just for every job where you’ve got less than, say, 80 percent of the qualifications. Please feel free if anybody’s got any questions to do with executive career management. I’m more than happy to answer them, not just to do with today’s topic on cover letters.

Networking and Direct Mail:

So the number two cover letter is to an executive recruiter. Now there are some things you need to put in here. You need to tell them whether you’re willing to relocate. If you’re willing to relocate, give them the cities where you’re willing to relocate. Second thing is, are you willing to travel? If you’re willing to travel, give them a percentile time of what and what you are, what your 100% of time is that you are willing to travel, just a rough estimate because nothing’s going to come together like that. But just give them some idea. And then tell them you would like to go on their database, because they don’t find you jobs when the job comes on from their clients. Then they go on the hunt for talent. But you always need to be on their database. That’s a very, very crucial thing for career management. And also, keep your LinkedIn profile up to date so then they can find you and fully complete. So advert, a letter to executive recruiters. The next one is direct mail. The bulk of the jobs, if you’ve been hearing me on Tuesdays at Two and watching my YouTube channel, the bulk of the jobs, doesn’t matter where you are in the world, in the Western World, yeah, are hidden. They’re not advertised online. Very few percent of jobs are advertised online. You need to go on the hunt. You need to be a detective and you need to go and find those jobs.

Networking and Hidden Jobs:

So if you want to go and work, you’re in career transition or you’re contemplating a career move and you’d like to go and work for XYZ company, go on XYZ company’s LinkedIn page and then start looking through the other people who are engaged or employed by that company and start to network within. And that’s where hidden jobs and that’s where you’re going to generate leads. Look for somebody who will be your boss or your boss’s boss and then also network offline, off the hiring line or the functional line so that you can get some idea of networking within and get some idea of culture and all sorts of different things that go with that. So then you’ll be far more prepared when you talk to career decision-makers, and hopefully that will lead to an interview.

Pain Cover Letter:

So the bulk of the jobs are through direct mail, hidden, and then the next one is networking. So you can’t get enough of networking. I am a furious networker, just both online and in person, no holds barred, but I build a huge database. But I’m very, very—I’m very narrow in my approach of putting people in my network, building my network. I don’t go this way. I go very, very narrow.

Different Types of Cover Letters:

So we’ve got advert, executive recruiter, direct mail, networking, and the fifth and final one is something that I write very infrequently, sorry, is a pain cover letter. P-A-I-N. So there are, in good economic times and in bad economic times, there are always companies hurting, needing particular skill sets to restructure companies or to revive, you know, for laundering finances or having problems with corporate compliance. So let’s go or sales. This goes on and on and on. So the pain cover letter is a letter where you’ve done your pre—you’ve done your due diligence, your homework. You’re pretty sure on the facts that you’ve gathered. And then you put a business case face to the person who will be your boss or your boss’s boss. So you would say something during my due diligence, I’ve uncovered the fact that your meeting corporate compliance or you’re not meeting SOCKS or you’re floundering on this or your sales alone. I believe I can pull those sales around. Why don’t we have an interview? So really be at the end of it, really be enticing to make them want to pick up the phone and give you a call.

So five cover letters: an advert, an executive recruiter, direct mail, networking, and the be-all and end-all, the pain cover letter. So in short, before I wrap this up, yes, you do need a cover letter. Be prepared. Never miss out on an opportunity just simply because you didn’t spend 20 or 30 minutes preparing a cover letter, customized, tailored to that particular job. The more you customize it, the more opportunities you’re going to get for an interview.

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