Nov 13, 2018 - 02:47 PM
While the two terms are often used interchangeably, the difference between a motivation letter and a personal statement is that a motivation letter is usually forward-looking and longer, while a personal statement is usually more reflective of the past, and shorter in length.
A personal statement has a lot in common with a branding statement, where you connect your most influential past experiences to who you are now, and the value it represents to the target organization in a general sense. But the personal statement will often go into greater depth, and include life experiences which might seem unrelated to work, but which influenced your decision to pursue a particular field of study or career.
A motivation letter, on the other hand, has more in common with a cover letter, where you connect past career experiences to the ways you expect to apply them in the future, in specific situations within a specific organization. The “motivation” part of the motivation letter fills out the story: what attracted you to this organization, and what about this opportunity resonates with you? While not as personal as the personal statement, the motivation letter shows that both your head and heart are aligned in wanting to pursue the opportunity.
Aug 22, 2018 - 11:17 PM
If you want to write a personal statement as part of the application process, you should mention how all your experiences have turned you into the employee you are today. For example, you may mention that your time in a certain position molded you into the tenacious, skilled worker applying for the job.
Like a personal statement, it's appropriate to talk about yourself in a motivation letter. However, as you write your motivation letter, you need to spend more time talking about your plans for the future and your goals.
When it comes down to it, you need to answer lot of "why" questions when you write a motivation letter. For example, you could answer why you are applying for a specific job, what you hope to do if given the job, and why you want to work in a specific career field.