Writing the Perfect Cover Letter

downloadA good cover letter should display your personality, aptitude for the position and how you will fit in with the company. It should communicate why you are the best candidate for the position and how you will fit into the company’s values/culture; it should also be contained to one page. It can be daunting to think about how much your cover letter says and how much you need it to say in just one short page. Cover letters are a big deal, and when done correctly can be your ticket to a job. Here are some tips to write that perfect cover letter.

  1. Don’t get “Perfection Blocked”
    Because cover letters say so much about you, it can sometimes be hard to pick up the pen and start writing. I call this being perfection blocked. When you’re perfection blocked you put off writing anything because you can’t seem to find the perfect words to say it. Don’t let this happen to you. Just start writing. The best way to come up with good ideas and writing is to simply get it out. The company won’t see your pre-final drafts, or any of your weaker ideas, so why abstain from writing them? Writing out all your ideas will make it easier to find that perfect one.
  2. Don’t regurgitate your resume
    You don’t need to list every position and everything you’ve ever done. Pick and choose one or two major experiences that encompass your ability to do the duties in the job description and explain them in more detail.
  3. Consider Company Culture
    Do your research to find out what the company culture is like. Including values and missions you share with the company can be key in showing how you fit in with their culture.
  4. Leave out the I’s
    Try and keep your cover letter from being I-centric. If every other sentence says “I did this” and “I think this” the company won’t be too impressed. It can be tricky because it is a letter explaining your experience, but try to find new ways to communicate this information. It shows that you are concerned with more than yourself and your portfolio, along with proving your level of written communication skills. Not everyone can craft a well-written cover letter without it being I-centric.
  5. Personalize
    It’s important to show that you took the time to tailor the letter to the company and position specifically and that it’s not just a stock cover letter sent to everyone. Make sure to mention the company and position name in your letter.

For more basics on cover letters check out “The Art of Cover Letter Writing… You Can Do It!”

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