Writing A Cover Letter Tips

Take the hour you just freed up and do something more enjoyable with it.If you think you need to open the letter with something creative or catchy, I am here to tell you that you don’t.

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If you squander one of those pages by just repeating the content of the others, you’re doing yourself an enormous disservice.

Instead, your cover letter should go beyond your basic work history to talk about things that make you especially well-suited for the job.

Strive for the tone you’d use if you were writing to a colleague who you liked a lot but didn’t know especially well.

That means that it’s okay to show some personality or even use humor.

One of my recent projects involved coordinating a 200-page grant proposal: I proofed and edited the narratives provided by the division head, formatted spreadsheets, and generally made sure that every line was letter-perfect and that the entire finished product conformed to the specific guidelines of the RFP. A five-year, $1.5 million grant award.) I believe in applying this same level of attention to detail to tasks as visible as prepping the materials for a top-level meeting and as mundane as making sure the copier never runs out of paper.” Your cover letter is your chance to provide context for things that otherwise might seem confusing or less than ideal to a hiring manager.

For example, if you’re overqualified for the position but are excited about it anyway, or if you’re a bit underqualified but still think you could excel at the job, address that up-front.In fact, bad cover letters are so prevalent that they’re far more common than good ones.Most people don’t know how to write a cover letter, so let’s learn!If you’re still stumped, pretend you’re writing an email to a friend about why you’d be great at the job.You probably wouldn’t do that by stiffly reciting your work history, right?That doesn’t mean that you can’t reuse pieces of the letter over and over — if you’re applying for a bunch of very similar jobs, you absolutely can — but it does mean that it should feel like you wrote it with the nuances of this particular job in mind.A good litmus test: Could you imagine other applicants for this job sending in the same letter?Or if all of your experience is in a different field but you’re actively working to move into this one, explain that and talk about why — and explain how your experience will translate.If you While there are some industries that still prize stiff, formal-sounding cover letters — like law — in most fields, your cover letter will be stronger if you write in a warm, conversational tone.The candidate had originally written, “I offer exceptional attention to detail, highly developed communication skills, and a talent for managing complex projects with a demonstrated ability to prioritize and multitask.” That’s pretty boring and not especially convincing, right?(This is also exactly how most people’s cover letters read.) In her revised version, she wrote this instead: “In addition to being flexible and responsive, I’m also a fanatic for details — particularly when it comes to presentation.


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