Job searching involves a whole lot of email. Reaching out to a LinkedIn connection about an open position. Emailing the hiring manager your well-crafted cover letter and a link to your portfolio. Writing (and deleting, and rewriting) yet another follow-up email.
And that’s pretty daunting. After all, a great email can open doors—and a bad one can slam them shut and get you sent to the spam folder forever.
Well, good news. Below, we’ve listed some of our most successful and popular fill-in-the-blank emails for the job search quandaries that you’ll come across—from meeting someone for coffee to turning down a job offer with poise. While you’ll still need to adapt them to fit your needs and background, it’ll make every message you write so, so much easier.
1. If You Want to Reach Out to Your Network for a Job
You probably know a lot of awesome people with even more awesome careers—and when you’re job searching, you should use this to your advantage! Use this template to reach out to colleagues, friends, and family to see if anyone has a lead on a job opening in you field. Even if you don’t get a direct response, people will now know to keep you in mind if an opportunity comes up.
2. If You Know Someone in Your Dream Company and Want to Be Introduced
One of the best ways to get an interview is to be referred by someone who has an “in” at the company. But, you also don’t want to bother acquaintances or make friends feel like you’re only using them for an introduction. This template shows you how to find a good middle ground that doesn’t make you sound demanding.
3. If You Want to Connect With Someone on LinkedIn
You’re on a company profile page and see that an almuna of your university works there. Score! But, how do you connect with her when you’ve never actually met? Try LinkedIn. This article provides 10 templates for every situation you may come across when adding others on the platform, whether they’re one connection away or seemingly out of reach.
4. If You Want to Meet Up With Someone to Pick His or Her Brain
Use this template to get (almost) anyone to say “yes” to meeting with you. Informational interviews and regular ol’ coffee dates are great networking opportunities and especially helpful when you want to learn more about a job, company, or person.
5. If You Want to Write the Perfect Cover Letter
OK, fine, this one isn’t necessarily an email—but we thought you might be interested. Cover letters are arguably the most dreaded part of any job application. But, before you groan, we have a step-by-step guide to ensure you show off your skills. So easy, it’s almost painless.
6. If You Want to Pitch an Awesome Idea (and Get a Response)
So you have an idea—a great one, actually. In fact, one that may even land you a job, or at least grab the attention of a company. But, you’re at a loss at what to do with the idea. Use this to pitch it over email and actually get a response.
7. If You Want to Follow Up on Your Application
You finally sent in your resume and cover letter and now, well, you wait. And wait. Have I always be this impatient? We suggest following up about two weeks from the date you submitted your application by using an email along these lines. Now, you can check “worrying about being too persistent” off your list of job search worries.
8. If You Want to Send a Memorable Thank You Note
You made it through the actual interview—either on the phone or in person—and you know the drill: Send a thank you note. This article will walk you through not only how to say thank you over email, but also how to do it in a way that leaves a lasting impression.
9. If You Want to Resign From Your Current Position
All of your hard work paid off, and you just got a new job! But, well, now you have to tell your current one. After breaking the news to your boss in person (because it’s the nice, professional thing to do), send this email version of your official resignation.
10. If You Want to Turn Down a Job Offer
You got the job—but this time you don’t want it. (Insert Debbie Downer noise here.) For whatever reason—and several are valid!—you think your current company or another opportunity is a better fit. Before you stress about angering everyone who just took time to interview you, check out how to turn down a job offer gracefully.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images / Jetta Productions.