So you have all the skills in the world. And your resume is perfectly formatted. You’ve done some amazing stuff during your college tenure. But you still haven’t been able to land that dream internship. Your batch-mates have all landed cushy offers from companies. Some have even been promised extended offers afterwards! But you always seem to get the short end of the stick. Is it just plain bad luck?
Listen up. I’m here to tell you that you make your own luck. Sure you might be the next Einstein but there’s always a reason for rejection.
You know how they say, don’t judge a book by its cover? Unfortunately, the real world doesn’t always work like that. People are judgmental. And they do judge a book by its cover.
But what’s the cover you may ask? Your resume is easy on the eye, and your email address is professional. (No firstname.lastname@example.org or Ramuthewonderful@yahoo.com type addresses!). Also, the content of your email is grammatically correct. So what gives?
Think back. You’ve found the company of your dreams. You update your resume, and you email the company with words similar to these:
I am a 4th year undergraduate in the Department of Computing from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. I am looking for a summer internship position during the months of May-June 2016. I believe that my all-round skills are a perfect fit for your company. I also am an eager and fast learner, and am confident that I can contribute to your success.
I have attached my resume that outlines my qualifications in detail.
You send it off to the company and wait for a response. But there is none!
So what’s wrong? You’ve outlined your qualifications. You’ve said the right things (quick learner, can contribute to the company, eager to learn, all the usual blah blah.) You are also from one of the best universities in the world. All that is fine. But there is a glaring omission! What’s the job position you are looking for? We are not all Sherlock Holmes here. Yes, you say that you are from the department of computing, but there is nothing else! The devil is in the details.
And there are more problems in this email. It looks like a copy-paste job. There is no specificity! It looks like you don’t even know what Venturesity does.
I could go on and on about the myriad problems with that email. But I think, instead of just criticizing and pointing out problems, I should now give you a few solutions and suggestions.
Repetition is Boring
Huh? What does that mean? I mean that don’t repeat your resume. Company folks are busy. They can get all the information they need from reading your resume. Your cover letter should be short, to the point, unique and should reflect your personality.
Talk about the company
Companies are like people. They have feelings. And like people, they like it if you talk about them in a flattering manner. So talk a little bit about the company, the history and the things that differentiate it from its competitors. Massage the company’s ego! But make sure to mention your own specific skill set and how your abilities will contribute towards the company’s progress!
Keep it short
People don’t want to read a ten-page essay. People don’t have time for that nowadays. So keep it simple, short and to the point. Don’t prattle and ramble on and on. Like what I am about to do here. Keep it short. Don’t write like Charles Dickens. Don’t show off your creative writing skills. Give the reader a break. You might be the next Shakespeare but you are applying for a job. Don’t … oh … you get the point. (See how rambling gets you nowhere?)
Mention the position that you are applying for
Okay, this is very important. Remember the above example. Well, if the company has several positions open, it stands to reason you must mention the position! Don’t let the company do detective work. Write the position either in the subject line or in the email body.
End on a high note
I love western classical music. I love to listen to the symphonies of Beethoven and Mozart. And if you listen to them, you know how the symphony winds up nicely with a nice bang.
So finish off your cover letter with a bang! Finish strong and finish quick. Round off your letter explaining how your experience will help you out on the job. Simple as that.
I GUARANTEE that if you follow these tips, you will land an amazing internship. You will be the toast and envy of your batch-mates. Landing an internship position at a company like Venturesity! What more do you want?