Cover Letter Tips and Taboos
Your cover letter needs to be:
- Addressed to a specific person
- Upbeat and confident
- Not repetitions of your resume
- Written on matching stationary
- Short and to the point
Do's and Don'ts of Cover Letter Writing
- DO address someone in authority whenever possible. Get a name.
- DO show that you've done your research.
- DO convey your enthusiasm and commitment. Be positive.
- DO balance warmth and professionalism.
- DO present something unique about you.
- DO be appropriate, yet stand out.
- DO initiate follow-up.
- DO remain brief and focused.
- DO write clearly and simply.
- DO state the position your are applying for and point out your qualifications.
- DO tailor your letter to the needs of the company.
- DO proofread.
- DON'T rely on correspondence. After researching, contact the employer directly. Try to get the interview without using a letter first.
- DON'T send out a form letter to several companies. Targeted and personalized letters are more effective.
- DON'T focus on negatives or areas where you lack strength. NEVER apologize for not having a particular skill.
- DON'T mention salary/wage expectations. (Unless requested to)
- DON'T use first names. (Unless requested to)
- DON'T claim things that are not true.
- DON'T forget to sign your letter.
- DON'T use abbreviations. Take time to spell things out.