Seven Years

Career Change Cover Letter

Craft your career change cover letter

A carefully crafted cover letter gets your resume noticed. A carefully crafted resume gets you the interview. Having your story straight, with examples, in the interview lands you the job.

It does not matter how old you are or if you little industry related skills. It is more about what work experience you bring with you. Scroll down to watch a video of Master Career Coach, Unre Visagie explain how to craft your career change cover letter.

The career change cover letter is meant to get you the job you’ve chosen at the company you’ve chosen, in the industry that you’ve chosen. We’ve found that if the cover letter is clear it demonstrates that the man has a plan and he is clear on the why and what about the industry, the company, the job and himself.

If this is clear then invariably people get hired and we even found that with this clarity people get jobs at companies where no jobs existed or was planned, because they see wow, this man is enthusiastic about my industry, my company, his job and himself.  I have to have such a person in my company, I cannot let him pass. I know I don’t have a job right now, but I’m going to make one for him. This happens with about a hundred students a year under Prof. Kroon at the North-West University where we’ve been developing and running this program for seven years.

This happened after we used the process to build our companies. We’ve used it for the last ten years in our pro bono community work where we’ve empowered people to get jobs starting from nothing. Today young people with very bad home conditions and education are fully qualified mining engineers. The process truly works. It also works for several people we coach at a $100000 plus level that gets 30% increases in the jobs they want towards building their career; it’s always aimed at the long-term career.

If you look at a cover letter it’s you choosing the job, the work you want to do, choosing the company you want to do it in or with, and the industry you want to operate in. When you look at a company you must be very comfortable with the company’s clients. You must be comfortable with the way they serve clients and the way they approach clients.

If you then look at your career change cover letter, it must have a maximum of three paragraphs; it cannot be more than three paragraphs. You must state that you have a plan, that you are excited; it must contain facts about the job, the company and the industry. Job, company and industry always stay together. The second thing that your cover letter must show is that you have a clear thread in your past decision making, to actually get you to this point. The cover letter must then state any TRUST. Trust is about four elements: reliability, acceptance, openness and congruence and openness. It must be clear in your cover letter. To get it clear, be ready with factual stories, remembering that we are still a story-telling society.

Career Change Cover Letter

The Power of Storytelling

I think we must add something about the power of good stories. A clear, good story has awesome power.

Here is a link to a video of Peter Guber: Peter Guber on The Power of Storytelling.

So what are the stories you require?

You require stories that show your manageability, stories that show your willingness to be involved, stories that show commitment, commitment to results, stories that show initiative. These are the things they interview for. They will ask you three sets of questions in the interview. They will ask open questions, for which you must have ready answers. They will ask you closed questions, for which you must have facts or one of these short stories.

Here is a link to Peter’s book “Tell to Win”:

Q: You must get ready for the interview in your cover letter?

A: Thank you, very importantly, I would advise that you have this clear because what I found is that this has a huge input in the words of the cover letter. The main reason for doing it at this time is to ensure that you are actually backing up your cover letter. This back-up gives you absolute confidence. The company may have a process of pre-screening: telephoning etc. If they call you and you are not ready, you’ve lost. We’ve worked through thousands of CV’s and interviews in our companies and if there is a lack of clarity it goes to the bin. The people who stated clearly in their cover letter why they wanted to work for our company in our industry they got an interview without exception.

Q: These stories, are they supposed to be long? How would they look in the cover letter? Are they paragraph stories?

A: No, the stories don’t get into your cover letter. The cover letter gives a strong indication that you have the stories. The words in your cover letter reflect your confidence, that’s why you must gain the confidence. That’s why you must get your stories ready. Written is better, but if you are like me writing is not always easy. Keep your stories ready.

If your stories are ready and you can tell me why the job, why the company, why the industry and why you, I’ve hardly ever seen anybody fail to even create a job where none existed. That is the power of a well-constructed cover letter. Getting somebody to craft you a clever letter which is not your words is a very dangerous thing. We can assist you, or many other coaches can assist you to help you find your words. On the website you will find further techniques to help you get your words.

Secondly, what I find people have great difficulty with is that most of us can’t talk about ourselves, we get totally stuck, so I find that you’ve got to have a soundboard, somebody you trust that is able and capable. In recent examples for instance, the best soundboard we found for a guy that’s earning $140000 was one of his clients. Why would a client help him? It’s a simple technique, to go and say thank you to the client, and to say wow, it’s really great what you are doing and I want to ask you a weird question today. What do you think I do differently, what do you think my next career should be.

What does that show to the client that you approach? That you recognize him, he’s a significant person and you really respect and accept him. When you approach people for advice and input, those three things are the most important. Significance, recognition, acceptance and respect are the most powerful approach to humans. Hardly anybody can say no to that. When we get the younger or older people that we coach to get into companies and jobs that didn’t even exist, this is one of the things we prepare them with. To approach with the right approach, only you can help me because you are so great. That comes back to gratefulness. When you approach the person you’ve got to be extremely clear on what you want.

Q: Why would I approach a client and ask them how am I different? How does that relate back to the cover letter?

A: It is for you to understand and communicate your possible contribution, your unique approach, why you are a valuable addition. It’s very hard to find this by yourself. It’s a bit like a brain surgeon doing brain surgery on himself; not a good idea. And very often, constructing your own stuff is like doing brain surgery on yourself.

Q: And specifically in a career change situation? You’ve got to now indicate what your skills are, because you bring a skill set, it’s not like your bringing industry knowledge as such, because you’re making a career change. But you bring who you are to the company.

A: Then you find an advisor in that industry, the one that you want to change to, that is how you engage in the industry. Be clear about the how and what. The how and what process must be applied to every phase. Your cover letter must show why you are excited. How are you going to show it if you don’t engage people in the industry, read the magazines, go to some trade shows? You may even meet your next employer at a trade show.

Q: And the reason you want to spend this amount of time on your cover letter is that your cover letter gets your CV into the interview bundle?

A: Yes, you’ve got to get your CV out of a huge pile into a shortlist, survive the shortlist and then get into an interview.

You have to spend time on this. Otherwise you will appear like everyone else. You are going to keep on begging and pleading, and no-one will understand you. They want to help you, but you don’t allow them to. That is why we say the door to success has a handle on the inside. This process of having clarity on the how and what of each element we call the golden key to success. It’s your golden key. To craft the key, to make the key is effort, but it’s the rest of your life. And today is the first day of the rest of your life. Can you put too much effort into this? I don’t think so.

We find that people with this clarity are very successful in our second process, where once you have done this, we can assist you to get into companies that don’t even advertise for a job. If you want to really join accompany and you are clear on this, there’s a process whereby you hook yourself in. You go with respect, you go with knowledge, you go with enthusiasm you are irresistible, and you have it in you. I haven’t met a person that doesn’t have it in him.

Extra resources:

The elements of trust

The issue resolution model

The power of storytelling (Peter Guber and Tony Robbins)

Find a career coach in your environment
Find a career coach with the right relationships to develop your career and expand your career choices. Career Builder identified the essential career builder skills; use them to turn any career challenge into a career growth opportunity.
When experiencing frustration or fear in your career use these emotions as opportunities to fast track your career growth; use them to pro-actively grow your career!
Find a career coach ». Career Builder assisted and is still assisting thousands of people in their career growth. We worked with more than thirty entrepreneurs and coached them through the process of building successful running companies. We are still working with this group of entrepreneurs and their companies as well as a new group of young entrepreneurs. Any successful business takes seven years to build. Career Builder coaching processes are forged in the fire of building these successful businesses and the development of the people running them; these processes are being used in many other companies as well.
We have found a few cornerstone skills to be essential in building a thriving career or business. Career Builder shares these with you before going onto our Find a Career Coach process. We discuss these skills in the form of coaching sessions on the Career Builder Coaching page and in more detail on the Actionable Career Skills page, these skills include:
Delegation
Create your own compelling events
Fear of the unknown
Pathologies
Frustration is just a trigger
Click here for the complete list…
Successful people and companies have a natural way of handling challenging situations. Career Builder observed, applied and understands this natural process.
Career Builder’s Walk and Talk method of career coaching was developed working with the best. Studying at Harvard Business School (Owner/President Management program) we came to understand the application of these processes in companies even better. Some of the Harvard Business School case studies included companies like Hewlett Packard, Volvo, Taco Bell, PepsiCo and many others. In the early seventies we were exposed to and learned from Hewlett Packard’s company processes; later this knowledge were implemented in our own companies.
We developed career coaching contracts and learned which processes worked and which did not. All these experiences with career coaching led us to the current simple set of skills we base our career coaching processes on. You can own and direct these processes to build your career. Work in a group when implementing these processes or take part in the Career Builder community forums; it always works best to implement a process with a group. The group can be directly or indirectly involved; or contact a Career Builder coach.
Where would you like to go?
Find a career coach
The difference between coaching, mentoring and councelling
Learn more about mentorship
Learn more about career councelling
At Career Builder we identified a few simple cornerstone skills we base our career coaching on. Click here for a complete list of these Career builder skills. We share these with you before going onto the Find a Career Coach process:
1. Delegate and grow
What is delegation?
Delegation is when one is able to give the work you do not enjoy doing to another who does enjoy doing that work, but you stay responsible for getting the job done on time. Successful delegation is when another person excels in their careers because they enjoy doing the work you do not enjoy doing or do not have time for. Read more on delegation…
A coaching session on delegation.
An article on delegation written by a Career Builder coach.
Read a case study on delegation:
Barry du Plessis
Leigh Harrison
2. Create your own compelling events / deadlines
Three tips to fast-track your career you can use right now:
Get a career coach by becoming a “sort of” expert in their interests and talk to them about these interests.
Find someone that loves the work you hate, delegate to them while staying responsible for this work.
When frustrated, ask yourself what is causing the frustration? Address this challenge before it explodes.
Successful company builders know that people can and should be stretched. Unre Visagie built many successful companies. He stretches the people that work with him in building these companies; people discover depths within them they never knew they had. The knowledge successful company builders have is to know when to stop expecting more from an individual and allow that specific growth curve to play itself out. The trick is that anyone wanting to grow their careers can apply this same “pressure” to themselves in building their own successful careers. Have a career builder attitude!
Read more on creating your own compelling events and learn from a coaching session on deadlines and compelling events….
3. Fear of the unknown
Making career choices based on what is unknown is always a source of uncertainty for most. We fear that which we do not know. Imagine looking down a very dark tunnel running straight down into the earth. You are expected to jump into this hole, you expect this of yourself or others expect this of you. To you this hole looks like it just goes down forever, a never ending drop into a very deep abyss…
Actually the hole is only two meters deep, but you don’t know that because you only see the black opening! We are too afraid to jump into this hole simply because we know nothing of it.
Read more on Fear of the unknown, you will also find a coaching session others learned from…
3. Find a career coach
Finding a career coach with the right relationships to develop your career and expand your choices is a simple one; it might not be quick though. One will practice engaging different people for the skills and knowledge you require from them, through being of value to them. Over time one becomes practiced and comfortable with the process of engaging experts, using the necessary skills in a natural way. If you have not yet, read through the list of skills Career Builder identified as fundamental career skills. This list matured through years of career and business building.
A good place to start is to have a broad understanding of coaching, mentoring and counseling:
Coaching
Mentoring
Counseling
When working with an expert as a mentor, be aware not to fall in the trap of counseling.
Engaging an expert person for they’re knowledge, resources and skills, there are a few skills one will use:
Emotional awareness
Signal to transform into a positive mindset
Turn all emotional experiences into selected actions
Growing a win-win mindset
Interpersonal skills through actions
Covey’s Seven Habits of highly effective people
Giving and receiving information
Responding to anger signals
Productive listening
Effective questioning
The next step
Get to know the expert’s environment. Following is a list of possible actions to take, add or remove actions that fit your unique situation.
Read about the individual in books, newspaper, magazines and on the internet.
Talk to others about the individual.
What is this person interested in, hobbies, current projects, which topics is of interest to him/her?
Strive to spend time within the circles where he or she spends time.
Through gathering this information, always try to identify places where you will be able to add value to this individual. How would be able to make a positive difference to this individuals life? For example, the expert individual you would like to work with likes to build model aircraft. You are able to acquire such models at a discounted price. You have something of value to offer!
Remember to always be professional in your approach! Build relationship in an open manner, don’t be clandestine about your dealings, you might look like a stalker!
Talk to the expert every chance you get, share with them that you would love to learn from them. Ask how they think you would be able to add value them in exchange for their time. Always have a few suggestions how you would be able to add value.
Ask for advice and practice your “expert acquiring” skills at our community forums.
Find a career coach will grow and mature over the next months. Sign up for our Career Builder Ezine if you would like to stay up to date.
The complete list of Career Builder skills:
Delegation
Deadlines or Compelling events
We fear what we do not know or understand
Pathologies
Frustration is just a trigger
Flexible and adaptive way of handling people
Work in the center, not the individual
Having an “Everybody benefits” attitude
Burnout
Stress
Motivation

Find a career coach in your environment

w&t_elephant

I Advise

Find a career coach with the right relationships to develop your career and expand your career choices. Career Builder identified the essential career builder skills; use them to turn any career challenge into a career growth opportunity.

When experiencing frustration or fear in your career use these emotions as opportunities to fast track your career growth; use them to pro-actively grow your career!

Find a career coach

Career Builder assisted and is still assisting thousands of people in their career growth. We worked with more than thirty entrepreneurs and coached them through the process of building successful running companies. We are still working with this group of entrepreneurs and their companies as well as a new group of young entrepreneurs. Any successful business takes seven years to build.

Career Builder coaching processes are forged in the fire of building these successful businesses and the development of the people running them; these processes are being used in many other companies as well.

We have found a few cornerstone skills to be essential in building a thriving career or business. Career Builder shares these with you before going onto our Find a Career Coach process. We discuss these skills in the form of coaching sessions on the Career Builder Coaching page and in more detail on the Actionable Career Skills page, these skills include:

  1. Delegation
  2. Deadlines or Compelling events
  3. We fear what we do not know or understand
  4. Pathologies
  5. Frustration is just a trigger
  6. Flexible and adaptive way of handling people
  7. Work in the center, not the individual
  8. Having an “Everybody Benefits” attitude
  9. Burnout
  10. Stress
  11. Motivation
w&t_binoculars

I Explain

Successful people and companies have a natural way of handling challenging situations. Career Builder observed, applied and understands this natural process.

Career Builder’s Walk and Talk method of career coaching was developed working with the best. Studying at Harvard Business School (Owner/President Management program) we came to understand the application of these processes in companies even better. Some of the Harvard Business School case studies included companies like Hewlett Packard, Volvo, Taco Bell, PepsiCo and many others. In the early seventies we were exposed to and learned from Hewlett Packard company processes; later this knowledge was implemented in our own companies.

We developed career coaching contracts and learned which processes worked and which did not. All these experiences with career coaching led us to the current simple set of skills we base our career coaching processes on. You can own and direct these processes to build your career. Work in a group when implementing these processes or take part in the Career Builder community forums; it always works best to implement a process with a group. The group can be directly or indirectly involved; or contact a Career Builder coach.

1. Delegate and grow

What is delegation?

Delegation is when one is able to give the work you do not enjoy doing to another who does enjoy doing that work, but you stay responsible for getting the job done on time. Successful delegation is when another person excels in their careers because they enjoy doing the work you do not enjoy doing or do not have time for. Read more on delegation

2. Create your own compelling events / deadlines

Three tips to fast-track your career you can use right now:

Successful company builders know that people can and should be stretched. Unre Visagie built many successful companies. He stretches the people that work with him in building these companies; people discover depths within them they never knew existed. The knowledge successful company builders have is to know when to stop expecting more from an individual and allow that specific growth curve to play itself out. The trick is that anyone wanting to grow their careers can apply this same “pressure” to themselves in building their own successful careers. Have a career builder attitude!
Read more on creating your own compelling events and learn from a coaching session on deadlines and compelling events….

3. Fear of the unknown

Making career choices based on what is unknown is always a source of uncertainty for most. We fear that which we do not know. Imagine looking down a very dark tunnel running straight down into the earth. You are expected to jump into this hole, you expect this of yourself or others expect this of you. To you this hole looks like it just goes down forever, a never ending drop into a very deep abyss…
Actually the hole is only two meters deep, but you don’t know that because you only see the black opening! We are too afraid to jump into this hole simply because we know nothing of it.
Read more on Fear of the unknown, you will also find a coaching session others learned from

Find a career coach

Finding a career coach with the right relationships to develop your career and expand your choices is a simple one; it might not be quick though. One will practice engaging different people for the skills and knowledge you require from them, through being of value to them. Over time one becomes practiced and comfortable with the process of engaging experts, using the necessary skills in a natural way. If you have not yet, read through the list of skills Career Builder identified as fundamental career skills. This list matured through years of career and business building.
A good place to start is to have a broad understanding of coaching, mentoring and counseling:

  • Coaching
  • Mentoring
  • Counseling

When working with an expert as a mentor, be aware not to fall in the trap of counseling.

Engaging an expert person for their knowledge, resources and skills, there are a few skills one will use:

The next step

Get to know the expert’s environment. Following is a list of possible actions to take, add or remove actions that fit your unique situation.

  • Read about the individual in books, newspaper, magazines and on the internet.
  • Talk to others about the individual.
  • What is this person interested in: hobbies, current projects, which topics is of interest to him/her?
  • Strive to spend time within the circles where he or she spends time.

Through gathering this information, always try to identify places where you will be able to add value to this individual. How would you be able to make a positive difference to this individual’s life? For example, the expert individual you would like to work with likes to build model aircraft. You are able to acquire such models at a discounted price. You have something of value to offer!

w&t_elephant

I Advise

Remember to always be professional in your approach! Build relationship in an open manner, don’t be clandestine about your dealings; you might look like a stalker!

Talk to the expert every chance you get, share with them that you would love to learn from them. Ask how they think you would be able to add value them in exchange for their time. Always have a few suggestions how you would be able to add value.

Ask for advice and practice your “expert acquiring” skills at our community forums.

Explanation of the following skills will follow shortly:

  1. Delegation
  2. Deadlines or Compelling events
  3. We fear what we do not know or understand
  4. Pathologies
  5. Frustration is just a trigger
  6. Flexible and adaptive way of handling people
  7. Work in the center, not the individual
  8. Having an “Everybody Benefits” attitude
  9. Burnout
  10. Stress
  11. Motivation