Quite often someone uses his standard cover letter or, worse, copies other’s cover letter and simply changes the addressee, name of position and source. Unfortunately, such process simplification may neglect an opportunity to be ‘seen’. Sending a cover letter along with resume has many purposes; some of which are to trigger reader’s curiosity or enthusiasm to read more candidates’ qualities and experiences and to keep such in reader’s mind longer.
Like resume, cover letter requires tailoring. For generalization, in the following paragraphs we will share some helpful hints to build powerful cover letter.
How many paragraphs in a cover letter?
3 or 4 paragraphs should be enough. The first paragraph, consisting two or three short sentences, is for introduction such as showing interest in the position and name of position. Because employer may use different channels at the same time to advertise one opening position, it may also be useful to share where you know about the opening position.
The second paragraph is for your experience, current position, your school, MBA, title, etc.
The third or fourth paragraph is for closing statement. Share with readers why we’re interested in, why we want to be considered, how the next process will be, a promise we will contribute, etc. Lots of nice, polite and professional-outlook statements can be composed of.
What seems to be a problem?
All paragraphs talk about us! Nothing talks about the company we’re applying to, and nothing helps readers make decision whether we’re truly the right person for position.
We may say, “Please look my experience, my title, or the company I’ve been…”. Prospective employers may reply, “Well…those are all history, and may not guarantee same things will occur.”
Let us put our effort in helping prospective employers….. to be continued.
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