It’s essential that you write and attach a good covering letter when you send your CV to someone. It’s the first thing someone will read and you need to get it right. Get it wrong and people won’t even open your CV. Without a good covering letter and CV you’re not going to be asked in for a chat.
I’ve seen hundreds of covering letters in my job as a freelance talent manager recruiting for different production roles and also as a series producer. Far too many are badly written, repetitive and too long and can be dramatically improved. Some are just blank – which is poor and a missed opportunity.
When I am coaching I always spend time with my clients helping them to create a well written covering letter. I give them a template – which is specific to them and their skills and experience which they can adapt each time they write to a different company. And this is key – you need to change your letter each time you write to a company to match your skills and experience to their brand and what they are looking for.
This week Optomen TV’s Nicky Searle talks us through the trials and tribulations of being a newcomer to ‘The Industry’ and gives some sound advice on how you can stand out from the crowd.
So you think you would like to make a career in television? Where do you start? How do you get noticed from the many thousands of people trying to get into this industry? It’s a good question. As one of the many CVs that arrive in my email inbox every day, how do you get yours on my radar?
A well written cover letter is a great start, and of course making sure it’s addressed to the right individual, and also the correct company! You will be surprised how many emails I get at Optomen addressed to Objective or Endemol. It’s clear that spelling is an issue, spelling names of our key talent or the titles of our programmes incorrectly, is an instant faux pas. A badly laid out email just makes me think that you have no attention to detail, and haven’t thought through your application properly. The best cover letters are a couple of paragraphs, telling me a little bit about you, and why you think you could be a good fit for our company, and why I should meet you?