I shared screen shots of the email exchanges below which includes sample emails on my Instagram stories and got a lot of feedback from it. Some were from people and business owners that found recruitment a herculean task because of the quality of the applications/CVS they receive. Someone said she had received a CV once that had been forwarded several times over the months (they didn’t bother to delete the email trail) without email text. Basically, they just clicked forward, typed in the email address and sent!
Finding a job/ business opportunity can be tough especially in a country like Nigeria where there is a shortage. Some of the feedback I received were also from prospective job seekers saying thank you because they genuinely didn’t know any better. I decided to do a blog post about it and share 8 things IN MY OPINION are dos’ an don’ts when writing a job application or business prospect email. You can also do a google search for “Sample Emails” for the type of business or job opportunity you are pursuing. You’ll be amazed at the wealth of information out there.
- One size does NOT fit all: The CV you send to company A may not be suitable for company B even if it’s the exact same role. Why? Because they are not the same company and therefore their requirements, processes, culture etc will be different. You need to tweak you CV to suit the role and company you’re applying to. Highlight the key areas of your experience that will best match the job description of each organization. The same applies when prospecting for business.
- Do you research: Go online and find out something about the company; ask around. That way when you’re writing a cover letter you are writing from the position of knowledge. Go on their social media pages if they have one. You’ll be amazed how much information you can us to your advantage is available there.
- Go straight to the point: If you’re prospecting either for a job or business opportunity, make sure your communication is straight forward and concise. You don’t want to irritate the reader with suspense and intrigue. They might be very busy or be having a bad day don’t scuttle your chances by beating about the bush.
- Use English Words: This one is for millennials, don’t write “see” as “c” or “okay” as “ok or K”. Using “text speak” is a fast way to get your correspondence in the bin.
- Spell Check: After you’ve finished writing, spell check, then spell check again then ask you sister to spell check what you’ve spell checked! The point is you can never spell check too much.
- Make it easy for them to contact you: Include your contact information more than once appropriately. I’m not saying drop you phone number randomly mid-sentence but be creative. If you’re sending a CV or business proposal it will include your contact information but there is nothing wrong typing it again in your email cover as part of your signature. The idea is that you don’t want them to work too hard to get your details if they want to get in touch. If there is a creative non-awkward way to include it in the body of your email go for it!
- Follow Up, but not too much: This one is tricky, you’ll have to strike a balance so that you don’t come across as a stalker. If you send an email and don’t get a response after a few days or up to a week. Try calling if you have a phone number. I prefer phone because you can get an answer there are then and access the situation based on the persons tone. A follow up email may also be appropriate. It’s tricky but my opinion is it’s better to follow up at least once so that you know you gave it a good shot.
- Be resilient: The chances of you getting a positive response at your first business proposal or job application is slim (but not impossible). Make sure you find several prospects and approach them. The more people you approach the more chances you have of getting a positive response.
Am is NOT the same the as I’m! This irritates my SOOOOOOOUL!
Please learn that I’m is I am and I am is shortened to I’m. When you write “Am” in place of “I’m” you are basically removing the “I” which makes absolutely no sense!