Those who apply speculatively can expect never to receive any form of answer to their letter. However, a completely different case is also possible: You draw attention to yourself at exactly the right time with qualifications that HR and executive management have been secretly looking for – and without competing with up to hundreds of competitors. In the case of a blind application, however, it is important to act specifically instead of indiscriminately. You shouldn’t make these 5 mistakes:
# 1 corporation instead of start-up
Start-ups are often particularly open to speculative applications. These companies grow and change relatively quickly, have less rigid structures and more opportunities, and are more willing to think again and act flexibly. For larger companies, a look at the job section of the homepage could be helpful: It often states whether unsolicited applications are desired or not.
# 2 Wrong focus: CV instead of cover letter
With the cover letter, you should make even more effort with a blind application than you do anyway. Finally, you have to convincingly explain why you want to work at this company so strongly that you cannot wait for a suitable job advertisement. And: What can you offer the company that needs it without knowing it beforehand? What could bring measurable financial added value to the company? Your application must show that you have worked intensively with the employer and his current projects. Keep it short, you only need to arouse a general interest in yourself. And also when it comes to attention: do without a fancy layout or other visual gimmicks.
# 3 Sloppy research
A quick glance at the company’s website is not enough to meet the above requirements. Rather, you have to do a thorough research before you write the cover letter. In which countries does the company operate, who are the most important customers, what direction is planned for the future? Also scan all open job postings to get a feel for what is important across jobs. Relevant information can also be found in the media, special industry magazines.
# 4 No contact person
Even with a speculative application, you should find a specific contact and not send a “Dear Sir or Madam” letter. If the company’s website and Google don’t help you, pick up the phone and call. The clear advantage: You can start the cover letter with a reference to this call.
# 5 Don’t be too specific
With a view to your person and qualifications, you are welcome to fall into the house with the door. However, it can be advisable not to commit yourself too precisely to what you could work in the company. Since you do not know the internal structures and processes, you could prematurely disqualify yourself. It is better to recommend yourself indirectly for several positions with reference to different professional experiences and skills. In marketing departments, for example, the tasks are very diverse. The big art then, however, is not to look too arbitrary.