Draw Conclusions about a Company’s Needs and Your Job Fit
During your job search, get a clear picture of industry trends and what’s going on with your target company. Turn that research into a clear list of issues you think the company’s hiring manager cares about and how you can help address them.
Create a chart like this one.
|Problems (Business & Personal)||How You Can Help|
The first three columns are pretty self-explanatory. Here’s a breakdown of what to put in the next several columns:
Similarities: Jot down anything you find out about the hiring manager, either from LinkedIn or Twitter, that aligns with your own interests or experiences. Mentioning friends and schools in common is a great start for when you reach out.
Goals/Initiatives: As you read industry blogs and company tweets and look at recent hires in the organization, you get a sense of a company’s strategic direction (what it’s trying to achieve in the market this year). Take a guess at what you think this hiring manager is trying to accomplish. It may be raising funds from investors, cutting operations expenditures, or filling a recent vacancy.
Problems (Business and Personal): Note the top three issues that this hiring manager is likely struggling to overcome based on your industry and company research.
How You Can Help: Just knowing and then naming a company’s problems isn’t enough. You need to offer to help solve them. Think about your skill set. Which of the company’s problems do you think you can address? List any specific skills or experiences you have that specifically address the problems.
After you call out these skills in this table, refer back to them when customizing your cover letter or résumé. These skills or experiences should form the foundation of the main points you try to communicate in your application.