Here you introduce yourself as the solution to a difficult business
challenge. It could be lack of personnel policies and procedures, or low
employee morale. It can be anything. The important thing is that it's the
kind of problem you love solving.
To write this letter, first decide what kind of problem(s) you want to solve. Then ask companies if they have that particular problemand if they want it solved. (Some companies like their problems.)
Isn't that simple?
The formula for the letter looks like this:
A real-world example
Nancy Thomas came to see me after graduating from law school. She had written to 250 Denver law firms, and had called the senior partners in all 250 firms. The net result of her effort was two courtesy interviews and no job offers.
Nancy was upset. She had tried everything. She had answered ads in legal journals and newspapers. She had done extensive networking and nothing was working. (Imagine having spent five years and $23,000 on an advanced degree, only to find no job waiting.)
We analyzed the situation. It wasn't that no attorneys needed help. They did. Show me a major law firm that isn't swamped. The real problem was the economy: We were in a recession, and lawyers were afraid to add new staffand $20,000 to $30,000 in overheadin uncertain times.
We pictured our ideal "problem situation" graphically, even humorously. This was the "perfect" work environment for Nancy to walk into. And here's what it looked like:
To this imaginary attorney, we sent the following letter:
The letter produced instant results. Apparently, we found the right appeal. Within a week, Nancy had two or three part-time legal jobs. She chose her own hours and decided which assignments she wanted to accept. She was her own boss. She became the first freelance attorney in the country, and she still continues as a freelancer today. Nancy has had opportunities to accept full-time assignments, but declined them. Freelancing was too much fun.
Nancy solved her problemnot by focusing on her own needs and frustrations, but by focusing on ways to help others. It was truly a win-win situation. And there's an answer like this to every career problem. The answer may not be obvious at first. It often takes several hourssometimes weeksof wrestling with the problem to see the solution. But it's there. And it can often be implemented with a well-planned letter.
List some of the kinds of problems you'd like to solve, and be as specific and detailed as you possibly can.
Now, picture a company badly in need of your services. What does it look like inside? What's happening? Exaggerate the situation greatly so that everything seems larger than life. Write down the particulars.1.
Next draft your letter. You'll be on the way to some well-deserved interviews (where you'll often be the only candidate for the job).
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