Monday, November 02, 2009

The covering letter

Finding staff who can write is a migraine for employers in Nigeria. Here is a sample of covering letters (all from "graduates") that just fell into my inbox. The spelling/grammatical mistakes are all exactly as they were sent. Spot the yoruba candidate who drops and adds h's in writing, replicating the yoruba tendency to do the same in speech:

1. Dear sir/ma


It is my priviledge to demostrate the zeal and enthusiast to be part of your event organisation,i am please to say to your honour that,i am qualify to be your event manager, first and foremost,i have undoubted skill couple with my industrious ability to work with team,compliance to my superior in authority,and bear to the maximum end any challenges confronting my giving tasks until success emerge.

similarly,i have gotting excellent ideas and event managerial skill when i was the zonal correspondent to DYNAMIX AWARD and MAGAZINE inLAGOS,besides that,i am passiponate about event planning and party arrangement,because it as been part of my interested area right from my secondary school days to my university days.

finally, i have no doubt about my ability to handle events,as long as due process is follow and compensation is base on performance.

it will be my sincere appreciation if i am consider to be interview base on my past experience and ideas.

Thanks for your consideration.


I am writing to apply for a contract deal. As your talent identifying consultant. Using my talent-identifing software. Which works thus. After knowing a job descricption requirement. As in required thought pattern to achieve such job need. A command is giving to the software. So as to select the brain power required for such task. Using infomations in the curricular vitea. Preferably if patterned, as my own attached below.

Because of the productivity need. That is why this software was even produce at the firt place. The benefits includes recruiting for self and clients talented staffs. To promote their productivity level.

Now I do it at TEN THOUSAND NAIRA per head selecetd. That is to say. If you are to give us a try. All you need to do is to give us the job descriptions. The number of people you needed. And ready our payment. By multiplying the number of staffs required. With our fee of TEN THOUSAND NAIRA only. Though yuor have to verify the infomations you sent us yourself. As every software programm is garbage in garbage out. And otherwise

Thanks for your co-operation.

yours faithfully


Has regards the call for Event Manager Opportunities, i hereby declare my readiness to serve at this capacity. You cannot get what i imply lest you invite me over for a creative presentation. I head a creative hot-shot presently sub-managing T_____'s account in creative matters. In depicting your messages, controlling the marketing process, strategising and bringing the vision of this envisaged Award event is our expertise. We needn't to present CV online because it is rather too compressed also the visuals that are too heavy for attach process, just invite us and you'll see what you envision. Your success is our concern, try us today.


As it was clearly posted online that you might have need someone with a background and experience as an event manager, my experience has ingrained in me the confidence and ability in order to prospect my skills for the position in your organisation .

I would like to be considered for an event manager in which someone of my background could make a contribution , I am intensely interested in contributing my skills and experience to your organisation because of your organisation reputation for quality .

Should you require any additional information ,kindly find the copy of my curriculum vitae for your perusal .I will always be available and look forward to hear from you soon for test /interview .

Thank you


5 DearSir/Ma


I wish to bring to your knowledge information concerning my personality profile of which in my view would be of immense importance to you and the prospects that lie ahead of us all.
My name is ------------ I had my tertiary education acquired from Lagos State University in Lagos State. I did my youth service at Ogun State.

I am a B.Sc holder with 2.2. I have acquired skills in my discipline, Banking and finance and from the angle of job experience drawn from varied backgrounds and from many years of dedicated and committed service. These skills include but not limited to banking and financial knowledge, marketing (both FCMG and Others), research and studies to mention but few.

I wish to boldly ascertain that I have always been competent and not lacking in any tasks, assignments and responsibilities given me. I also draw more due to my ability (though in this wise, curious) in making findings and establishing facts.

My unique selling point is very simple. I am a relational – relational kind of person. In my dealings with people, I have this high attraction to identifying peoples’ needs and challenges hence meeting same. Once this is established, permit me to say that there is nothing that I cannot sell business-wise.

My values. I believe in diligence. Also in my custody is the believe in mutual respect. I am a very disciplined person.


Anonymous,  9:05 pm  

Lolz - "Hi believe dat you will thurst find it 'ard to pick someone good from dis"

Ms. Catwalq 10:17 pm  

I wish I could laugh but I am instead, very saddened. Yes, there is unemployment but what jobs are we to provide for the multitude of job seekers who cannot even sell themselves properly with a simple letter? And these are graduates o...I fear

Sugabelly 11:32 pm  

I can't read anymore. After PASSIPONATE that just did it for me. Wow.

Mogaji 12:55 am  

Well, you cannot blame the writers. These letters simply reflect the flaws of the Nigerian education system.

Seyi 1:14 am  

This is really saddening. It's a sad reflection of the rot in the Nigerian educational system.

However, I must point out that it is not just Nigerian employers that are struggling to fill graduate positions. I have had the opportunity to sit on recruitment panels in the UK and Australia. And I can tell you some of the application letters are not any better than those you posted.

Anonymous,  6:34 pm  

WOW. Our school system is a mess that's for sure, but some of these are hilarious, esp #3 - the one that wants to come and present visually...wonder what they are presenting that cannot be attach? LMAO!!!

Bisola,  11:25 pm  

I have to put this on facebook!

Anonymous,  1:41 am  

Let mr. fashola and the others keep planting flowers, building skyscrapers and international airports while our educational system suffers.

Mr. Fashola has realized just like every other naija politician has and that is THAT THERE POPULARITY IS DIRECTLY PROPORTIONAL TO THE AMOUNT OF CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS THAT THEY CARRY OUT.

Anonymous,  11:50 am  

Have you guys not noticed how uninterested the young ones are on things academic these days? We are in trouble and everybody is pretending that all is well. I help run a media outfit and what the so called English Language and Mass Commgrads bring to you is to say the least terrible. Guess what, when you correct them including those who wrote what you posted, they always have a response defending the gibberish they write. They are not willing to learn

Ebi Atawodi 1:53 pm  

I just put up an advert in Nairalist, and one of the e-mails subject is "Ma CV" and the body is "Bros please find CV attached".

יש (Yosh) 9:11 am  

True,the Nigerian Educational System (if not an oxymoron) is in rot. But whatever happened to self-help? Most people are just plain lazy. Of course there are countries in the world where English isn't their primary official language, but for the sake of globalization and maintaining a level of competitive advantage (Vision 20 2020 et al), you need to at least present yourself relevant.

The contents Nigerians are exposed to and expose themselves to won't help either. Be it from print and media, there's just a barrage of nonsense out there.

Change starts from the individuals...

Anonymous,  10:45 am  

I feel so indebted to assist those 'ailing' in this respect. But when you have a sizable number among over 100 million people to render such help, even when Obama says: Yes we can!, you simply cannot see the motivation to...

Anonymous,  9:57 am  

English no be my language jo, as long as communicate is done, ideas is need. At least my English is better than the Queen's pidgin

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