July 20, 2017

What do Porn and Bad Pitch/Cover Letters Have in Common? More than You Think

The nature of my business is such that I have multiple email inboxes. The consequence of that is that one is always, inevitably, in the midst of a spam porn deluge.

Why am I telling you this? Well, the more I’ve been deluged the more I’ve realized that spam porn and bad pitch/cover letters have a lot in common.

What kinds of things am I talking about?

Let’s get the obvious out of the way:

Typos/irritating abbreviations:

Leaving aside the inevitable its/it’s, your/you’re confusion—which is pervasive in both—I also never need to see “info” “congrats” “tonite” or “invite” used as a noun.

Bad grammar:

Please note, there’s no need to leave anything dangling, particularly modifiers such as:

  • “I was wondering if you want to grab some drinks maybe”

No one is keen to hire a candidate who lacks direction, so don’t borrow these lines:

  • “I’m frustrated and bored with life at the moment” or
  • “Tell me what you want me to do”

(There is also no need to announce you are “ready to play.” Urgh, “Let’s play!” drives me wild across every form of social media.) 

Nobody wants to feel like an afterthought so please don’t include:

  • “If I’m not too late I’d like to meet tomorrow”

Yes, I’m busy (You should be, too) so don’t ask:

  • “Are you busy?”

Don’t tell me:

  • “You need to see this” (and really don’t tell me I “need 2 see” it)

Also, whether you want me to add you to my LinkedIn contacts or make contact in another way, please let me know how this will benefit me. Do not send a note along the lines of:

  • “I want to see your information” or
  • “I want you to add me to your contacts”

Because as much as I would love to, I am not here to make dreams come true.

FYI, and by the way, neither is the company you are pitching or the H.R. director so stay away from:

  • “I think you could make my dreams a reality.”

Finally, should your cleaned up cover/pitch letter get you in the door, please don’t over-share in the manner below:

  • “I just got out of a long term relationship and it’s time for me to turn the page”
  • “I was offline for a few months because I had met someone but now I’m single again!”

Yowza—who knew spam porn had so much to offer?

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