When Applying For a Job, Keep Your Personal Business To Yourself

“Please help me, I’m a mother of three children and I really need to work at home to support my family. My husband is on disability and this opportunity means a lot to me. I have over 5 years of experience as a receptionist for a big bio-chemical firm. I have a computer and Microsoft Word, but I would really like to do data entry at home. Please accept my resume of your open position. Please consider me, you won’t be sorry. I really need this job.”

The above e-mail is not made-up; it is a real e-mail. And I get dozens of e-mails like this daily and I don’t have an open work-at-home position! I just wrote a book on how to find and get a telecommuting job.

Employers that do have open positions get hundreds (yes, I said hundreds) of messages like this from would-be applicants, weekly. And none of them are considered. Why? Are the employers cold-hearted? No. But they are in the business of making money. This letter says nothing about getting business done and making money!

This letter instead says, “I lack confidence. I’ll have a myriad of excuses later on why I can’t get the work done. You are my personal savior and I need you to make my life right.”

When in fact, most employers are looking for:

  • Confidence
  • Efficiency (no excuses — get the work done, please)
  • Professionalism (no emotional baggage)

So knowing this, let’s re-write the above letter:

I saw your advertisement for a Virtual Transcriptionist and thought, “this would be a perfect fit.” I have over 7 years of experience in transcription and my office is outfitted with all the equipment needed (I have both a Mac and a PC with various transcription equipment that plays both digital and analog media). My attached resume outlines my previous work and I have references available. I’m very excited about this opportunity and I hope we can talk about the possibilty of testing or sending me a sample of your work that needs transcribing so I can demonostrate my skills. I can be reached via e-mail or phone . . .


Wow. Big difference huh? So when you apply for a telecommuting job, make sure you sound like the confident, efficient person at the end of this article. Not the desperate person at the top.

Happy Hunting!