Cover letters for firms in regions where I have no ties...?

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20160810
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Cover letters for firms in regions where I have no ties...?

Postby 20160810 » Sat Jul 31, 2010 11:45 pm

I'm applying cold for SA jobs at a few firms in markets outside of the one in which I go to school and to which I don't really have any substantive ties (beyond having lived there for a summer, or, in another case, having visited regularly.) Obviously ties are important in secondary markets, so I'm fighting a pretty uphill battle. What's the best way to address this issue with firms/in cover letters? I'm definitely not just applying for my own vanity, and I would like to get across that these are places I could really see myself living/working.

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MrKappus
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Re: Cover letters for firms in regions where I have no ties...?

Postby MrKappus » Sun Aug 01, 2010 12:06 am

I'm kind of doing the same thing, and I've just tried to be as specific as possible with why I want to live there. It's definitely an uphill battle though. I've reread a few letters before sending and thought, "Even I think this sounds like B.S." Sigh.

Maybe if you have a history of living in places for a long time you could mention the way you "commit" to places, but that starts to get a little lengthy for a cover letter.

270910
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Re: Cover letters for firms in regions where I have no ties...?

Postby 270910 » Sun Aug 01, 2010 12:16 am

Specific reasons why you want to live there would be good, as would some kind of mention of the fact that you're planning to establish yourself and start a career. "I am interested in (location) because (reason) and am looking forward to establishing myself as a lawyer there." That's not perfect, but something that gets across the message "while I'm looking somewhere new, I have thought about it and plan to follow through" instead of "oh my god there are no jobs I'd better mail Alaska too aahhhh fuck fuck fuck."

savagecheater
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Re: Cover letters for firms in regions where I have no ties...?

Postby savagecheater » Sun Aug 01, 2010 1:09 am

Kind of going to hijack this thread a bit, but I had a question similar to this -

A region where my dad's entire family is from, have gone for summer/winter vacation every other year of my life - does this count as "ties"?

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DerrickRose
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Re: Cover letters for firms in regions where I have no ties...?

Postby DerrickRose » Sun Aug 01, 2010 1:11 am

savagecheater wrote:Kind of going to hijack this thread a bit, but I had a question similar to this -

A region where my dad's entire family is from, have gone for summer/winter vacation every other year of my life - does this count as "ties"?


I would think it would go:

you having lived there > your family living there >>>>> everything else.

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20160810
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Re: Cover letters for firms in regions where I have no ties...?

Postby 20160810 » Sun Aug 01, 2010 1:18 am

DerrickRose wrote:
savagecheater wrote:Kind of going to hijack this thread a bit, but I had a question similar to this -

A region where my dad's entire family is from, have gone for summer/winter vacation every other year of my life - does this count as "ties"?


I would think it would go:

you having lived there > your family living there >>>>> everything else.

Not unrelatedly: What about places where I've lived for a very short time (a summer)?

conn09
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Re: Cover letters for firms in regions where I have no ties...?

Postby conn09 » Sun Aug 01, 2010 9:25 am

When
SoftBoiledLife wrote:
DerrickRose wrote:
savagecheater wrote:Kind of going to hijack this thread a bit, but I had a question similar to this -

A region where my dad's entire family is from, have gone for summer/winter vacation every other year of my life - does this count as "ties"?


I would think it would go:

you having lived there > your family living there >>>>> everything else.

Not unrelatedly: What about places where I've lived for a very short time (a summer)?


In the opening paragraph, I just wrote how long I lived there, what I did there and how much I enjoyed it and that I want to move back.

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Jarndyce
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Re: Cover letters for firms in regions where I have no ties...?

Postby Jarndyce » Sun Aug 01, 2010 9:58 am

I have actually talked to my current employer about this topic. He said that the cover letter is the most important part of the application for someone with no ties to the region. In order to even be considered, you have to demonstrate why exactly it is you want to be in the area... if you don't, he says he won't consider your resume.

I would discuss the fact that you don't have anything tying you to any area and that the area you are applying to is appealing for X and Y reasons. Play up any possible tie you have... if you like the sports teams there, work that in some way. If you are a mountain biker and you are applying in a mountainous area, figure out how to demonstrate it (maybe in the Interests section of your resume, which, btw, is pretty much a requirement in my area). You may not have ties to a state, but you can find something that makes it a good area for you, non-job-related.

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yinz
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Re: Cover letters for firms in regions where I have no ties...?

Postby yinz » Sun Aug 01, 2010 11:00 am

Jarndyce wrote:I have actually talked to my current employer about this topic. He said that the cover letter is the most important part of the application for someone with no ties to the region. In order to even be considered, you have to demonstrate why exactly it is you want to be in the area... if you don't, he says he won't consider your resume throws your resume in the trash.


Fixed that based on lunch conversations with three hiring managers in mid-sized cities.

Jarndyce wrote:I would discuss the fact that you don't have anything tying you to any area and that the area you are applying to is appealing for X and Y reasons. Play up any possible tie you have... if you like the sports teams there, work that in some way. If you are a mountain biker and you are applying in a mountainous area, figure out how to demonstrate it (maybe in the Interests section of your resume, which, btw, is pretty much a requirement in my area). You may not have ties to a state, but you can find something that makes it a good area for you, non-job-related.


Convincing the hiring manager or partner that a person in your position truly wants to live in that city is paramount. So, if you can outline why that city or region would be perfect for you, your professional goals, and your personal lifestyle, you at least have a shot at the "Maybe" pile. I'm not sure stating that the Panthers are your favorite professional sports team will get you into Charlotte, but if you grew up in Nashville or a city or area with similar personality and flavor, it may help and I would highlight that. Also, I would highlight the times that you spent in the respective city and, more importantly, why you worked there or wished to visit there regularly. Finally, I wouldn't underestimate the value of having close friends, a fiance/SO, or a genuine interest in the city.

These are all hail mary attempts and, if done sincerely, likely won't hurt your application; I doubt, though, that they would significantly boost your application. Of course, Ivy/T14 and/or great grades will open the gates a little more (or a lot more depending on the firm and hiring manager).

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BunkMoreland
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Re: Cover letters for firms in regions where I have no ties...?

Postby BunkMoreland » Sun Aug 01, 2010 5:44 pm

just wanted to note for this thread that I think ties are only vitally important to secondary markets

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20160810
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Re: Cover letters for firms in regions where I have no ties...?

Postby 20160810 » Sun Aug 01, 2010 6:59 pm

BunkMoreland wrote:just wanted to note for this thread that I think ties are only vitally important to secondary markets

This is pretty credited. Tons of people want to live/work in LA/NYC/DC/SF, so they don't really care why you want to be there. However in places like Sacramento, they're going to want to know you're serious and not just looking for backup. In my case, I asked because I'm applying for a few jobs in secondary markets (Texas, the Pacific Northwest) which I like and in which I could see myself living, but to which I don't have substantive ties. (FWIW, I have lots of friends in the PNW and visit regularly, and I lived briefly in Texas, but not long enough to constitute a tie to the region).




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