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Addressing Job Inquiries: Dear Sir/Madam?

Email Addressing Sir/Madam

Now that the job market seems to be heating up again, I’ve dusted off and put some new polish on this oldie but goody post.

Correct Approach for Online Employment Inquiries

When I receive a job inquiry (or any email for that matter) addressed as “Dear Sir/Madam”, I know the sender lazy. How do I know this? Because on my sites it is clear it is only me. With just one or two clicks you know that “Judith” is the person behind the site.

I’m not a Sir, nor do I consider myself a Madam. Address me this way and you’ve lost me before I even read your message.

If someone wants to email with this greeting to ask if I am hiring, I know they are probably not too discriminating in who they are contacting. They just want to get their resume or CV in front of whoever is behind the site. Any site.

Actually, when a service provider or business related contact approaches me in this way the result is the same. It indicates they did not spend their time to find out I am not a Sir.

I don’t know about you but I prefer to form relationships with those who take the time know who they are communicating with. Don’t take the time, I don’t have the time.

Think that sounds brusk? Well, I’ve been emailing for 25 years and I no longer compensate for those who do not take the time to reach out appropriately.

Job Opportunities + Attention to Detail = Positive Impression

Job applicants should try to find the name of the contact or the person behind the site before emailing willy-nilly. This allows you to personalize your approach and show an attention to detail.

  • Do just want to get your message across with the least amount of effort?
  • What do you think that says about your work ethic?
  • Are you not willing to make a few extra clicks or effort to find out who to address your application to?
  • What about those applicants who do?

If you are approaching me because you are interested in my consulting or coaching services, what do you this approach says about what kind of client you will be? It says you didn’t check my About page to know if we are a good fit.

Speaking for myself (and many I know who are very good at what they do), I don’t respond to mass email requests of that nature. You want to work with me, I have a process I detail on my site.

That process is actually in place for a reason. It gives me the opportunity to see what type of person you will be to work with.

The Right Way to Approach New Contacts

There are those who email and address me by name asking if I have any open positions. Some use Ms. Kallos or Judith.

Either way, I know they took a moment of their time to know who they are emailing and to address me by name. That keeps me reading on.

I can emphatically state that I take offers or requests from folks who email in that manner much more seriously. More so than the mass form spammers who just want to copy and paste into a form and hit send.

What am I to think about email inquiries asking about topics where the answers they are seeking are actually on my site? Or the emails making requests for services I don’t offer?

Applying for a Job is the Opportunity

Particularly when applying for a job, this little extra Email Etiquette effort goes along way to impressing the other side. You want to reflect the seriousness and professionalism of your request. That, my friends, is what can give you the edge!

What are you to do if you can’t find a name to specifically address an email to? Pick up the telephone and ask. It is that simple.

How badly do you want that position or to work for that company? Certainly it is worth the effort.

How serious are you about being taken seriously? It’s all about the actions one is willing to make — or not.

Addressing is an Important Detail

Details matter when it comes to business emails and applying for jobs online. Addressing is a big part of encouraging communications and opportunities for both sides.

Make the extra effort to pick up the phone and ask for a name to address your communication to. If you are cold calling, get to the right person and introduce yourself and ask if you can email additional information.

Now, that’s how you get a positive response over your competition!

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