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Cover Letters

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
Heeey. So, I am job-hunting and I decided that I would really love to work at the MAC counter in Canterbury, because I am far more passionate about it than I could ever be about any other retail job. The website says to send a CV (which I have, all retail/customer service focused) and a cover letter to an address in London etc. But I have no experience in the industry whatsoever, all I have is enthusiasm. Soooo what do I write? Loads of people have said "you should be a make-up artist" to me, but I can't really write that in a cover letter.

Bah, stupid job-hunting ;(.

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    focus on the enthusiasm part..?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Yeh, I guessed that, but I really have no idea what else to put in a cover letter. I've never done one before and I really really suck at things like this.
  • Olly_BOlly_B Mod-u-like Posts: 222 Settling in
    Hi,

    The answer is to write what the recruiter wants to read (and make sure you can back it up).

    Think of recruiting someone like any other investment. There is a risk that you will recruit someone who is terrible, but equally there is huge "profit" to be made out of recruiting someone who is good at their job. So as a recruiter you are essentially doing what happens in every other business transaction: looking for maximum profit from minimum risk.

    So identify you risks and eliminate/reduce them in your letter. The big risk is that you don't have any previous experience in this sector. How do you reduce that risk? The company would have to train you, but actually they'd have to train most people. The two distinct things you need to be good at are (a) doing make-up and (b) dealing with customers.

    So in your letter you need to prove you would succeed in the training element. Demonstrate that you can quickly learn (academic qualifications/achievements or a skill you've picked up), you are highly adaptable (can you play any position in your hockey team / did you quickly move from shelf-staking to being on a till etc?), you have a proven record of undertaking similar tasks (all that customer-facing work you've done) and that you are dependable/well-regarded (eg you got employee of the month / the manager trusted you with the keys). That people reckon you should be make-up artist means they must have had some knowledge to base that on... have you been asked to do make-up for people at weddings etc?

    You also need to show that as well as being low-risk you are "high-yield" (eg you are going to make them money). And think of it this way - would you prefer to employ someone who was a "safe-pair of hands" but not actually bothered about what they were selling, or someone who was really enthusiastic about the product. Any employee worth their salt would want to have someone who enjoyed the job/wanted to be there, so make sure that comes through in your letter: "This is my perfect job, because...". This is when you can do the bits about why you enjoy make-up so much, where you get that from. Show a mixture of knowledge (about brands, colours etc), enthusiasm (what it is about make-up you enjoy), and desire to pass that knowledge on to others.

    Finally - swap those two bits around. Start your letter with the enthusiastic bit and then add the risk-minimising element.

    Hope this helps. There's more on TheSite.org in our work and study section: Covering Letters.

    Olly
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Is this for Apple? I've got a friend who works at an Apple store, I can ask her for some tips if you like :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    No, it's for MAC cosmetics, hence the bit about being a make-up artist :p.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    ShyBoy wrote: »
    Is this for Apple? I've got a friend who works at an Apple store, I can ask her for some tips if you like :)
    That's what I thought at first, but I read the bit about makeup, so realised. If it's a job for Apple, they class themselves as Apple Technology (Or they use a private company to hire you.)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Hi

    Hey, great cover letter example. I'd go as far as saying that if your cover letter is no good, they won't even read your resume. They will just toss it aside. :wave: :yes:
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