Job-seekers should try to improve communication

The heartfelt plea for more job opportunities in design from Dan Cox (Letters, DW 22 August) was literate, but hardly persuasive. Sadly, in today’s market there is a surplus of designers – especially young designers and more especially designers who, unlike Dan, cannot communicate effectively.

One possible cause of graduate unemployment is the fact colleges still seem to fail to recognise the need to teach good communication skills to those hoping to enter our communications industry. At Design Distillery we receive ten to15 approaches a week from job-seekers, rising to 30-plus in the p

ost-graduation months. Some of them are polite and literate, but many are not and these are binned as a matter of course.

Some job-seekers feel they can simply leave a message via our website for us to contact them. On the basis that graduates need all the help they can get in their quest for employment, I offer these few simple hints:

organise the content of your letter and CV in a clear and cohesive manner. Rambling or over-clever presentations tend to be put to the bottom of the pile;

spell the recipient’s name correctly and get the gender right (if you are not sure a quick phone call is all it takes);

all computers have a spell-check so use it – if grammar is not your strong point ask a friend for help;

do not demand an interview/ immediate reply/reason why they can’t see you. We work in an over-pressured industry where demanding clients take precedence over demoralised students;

remember you are selling yourself. Treat your prospects with the courtesy and consideration you would expect if you were the client and try to find genuine reasons why they should choose you, even if it does involve some hard work.

It is a tough market out there, but stick with it and the best of you will, with a little luck, win in the end. The less talented should think again.

PS: We have no vacancies at the moment. Sorry.

Leslie Millard

Managing director

Design Distillery

London SE1

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