To whom it may concern:
I’m an American woman, young though almost thirty, who has moved to these far shores on the off chance that life will somehow be better here than it was in the states. I’m overweight by no small margin and though I am trying to change that, my willpower is not as strong as it should be.
I have skills in the dozens, but none of them the ones that you are searching for. I can talk my head off about random obscure things, but I have no real capability to sell anything to anybody if I don’t believe in what I’m selling. I can type fairly quickly, but I do often have to correct myself as I often type faster than my brain moves. Or I think faster than I type. A mild case of dyslexia doesn’t necessarily help the cause.
I am friendly and cheerful, even on days when I want nothing more than to curl up in a corner and cry. I can put on a smile, I can do a little dance, and I can charm your socks off. Even if you’re wearing stockings.
I’m a fast learner, but you have to be willing to take the chance on me. Teach me a skill and I can use it to many different applications. Just be willing to take the leap of faith.
Do I want to be your receptionist? Do I want to sit on my already large behind and answer the phones for you and take your messages and order the flowers for your anniversary so that your wife doesn’t beat you with a wooden spoon when you get home? No. Not really. But I will do those things and my job as well if you would only give me the chance. I can do this job. I can smile as though my life and livelihood depended on it. I can be polite and courteous. I can make your customers smile and laugh while they wait for you to get out of the bathroom. Just give me the chance.
Do I want to sit in a call center and take phone calls and deal with irate customers for eight hours a day? No. But I will. I will sit there, I will multitask. I will work my fingers to the bone to earn the money that you are so generously paying me for being a punching bag between your company and the general public. Just give me the chance. You won’t regret it. I can turn an angry customer into somebody who is calmer, more sedate. I can turn a disappointed customer into a happy camper. If given the chance and the freedom.
Do I know what I want to do? No. I don’t have a clue. I’m going to be thirty years old. I just finished my Bachelors degree in English last year because I made some stupid life choices when I was younger and I paid for them. I don’t have the education to teach. I don’t have the patience or the desire to teach. I have no real direction other than ‘not at home being useless’.
But I need that chance, I need that opportunity that somebody somewhere is going to see me, think that I have the raw material available to become something great, or even something just decent, and hire me. Train me. Teach and point me into a new direction. Give my life some meaning other than just the good suzy homemaker that I am.
I’m good at being suzy homemaker. I can cook and clean and organize. I can manage a house fairly well. I can ensure that there will be food on the table for less than $100/fortnight. I can work with budgets, I can make things happen. And I can make sure you will enjoy them. I can organize and put things in their places and make sure that even if they’re not where you thought they were, you can still find them.
I can be useful. Helpful. I can be a morale boost, always with an enjoyable story or some other way to make you laugh, even on the worst day. I can get things done and I don’t shrink from a deadline, I meet it head on. Often at the last possible minute, but the project is finished and the project is outstanding.
So how do I take all these things about myself that I know that I can do, and sell you on me. How do I make myself sound like somebody that you would be willing to train, to teach, to mold into the person that you’re looking for. And do it in only one page? How can I show you my education from a prestigious school, but not be able to apply anything that I learned of any value to your organization? And how can I convince you that I can do all of these things I know I can do. If you don’t even call me back for an interview?
I’m at a loss.
I don’t know how to sell myself in such a short space of time. And I feel as though I’m far too honest to just upright lie. Can I use Microsoft word? Of course I can. Am I proficient? No. I can’t make magic unicorns appear from the push of a button or two. I can make Excel do basic spreadsheets, but beyond that, I’m useless. Gimme an hour or two to scour the internet and I’ll find a tutorial to help me through. So how do I just lie and say that I can use them both? I haven’t made a Power Point presentation since my senior year in high school. And that was twelve years ago!
I know that I should lie. Or at least tell half truths. You’ll never want to hire me for me. Or at least for the me that you see on those pieces of electronic paper that I keep firing off to your offices and your recruiters. So I lie. I tell white tales and half truths to get you to look at me. Give me more than two minutes of your time. Call me. Talk to me. Interview me and you’ll see I’m so much more than those two pieces of paper could ever suggest that I am.
Of course, in talking to me, you’ll realize that I lied. You’ll realize that I can’t make Excel do pretty ballerina turns by the flick of a switch or the tap of a button. I can’t make Word sing ‘Hail to the Chief’ every time you walk in the room. But I can be taught, I can do what you want me to do. So do you hire the lie? or do you ignore the lie and hire me? for who I am?
I guess, the big question of the day is, how do I sell you on me, when what you see on that piece of paper isn’t really me?
Thank you for your time. I look forward to hearing from you soon.