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How To Write A Realistic Cover Letter
Cover letters give future employers an insight into who you are, what you’ve done, and what you have to offer. Although they can be painful to write, cover letters are a great way to show off your skills and prove that you deserve the job. Cover letters can be painful to write because most people don’t know how to write them and resort to templates. Avoid templates at all costs because they use eloquent verbiage to mask and generalize your skills and abilities. Here is how you write a realistic cover letter from scratch.
Every cover letter you write should need to begin with who you are addressing. Think of your cover letter as a personal letter to the hiring manager or the head of the department. Whether it’s
“To whom it may concern”, “To the hiring manager”, or “To Bob Smith”, starting with an address personalizes the cover letter.
Once you finalize whom you are addressing, your introduction should explain who you are as a professional and what role interests you. Start your introduction with your name, your current title is, the job you are interested in, how you came about finding the role, and briefly state why you would be a good fit.
The body of your cover letter should include previous work experience, and what skills you harnessed to excel in this new role. As you decide what pieces of your experiences you want to share, take time to ponder what the hiring manager and the company is looking for in a candidate. Read through the job description and the website to learn more about who the company is and the type of person they want.
Storytelling is one of the most effective forms of communication, and you should use that piece of knowledge to your advantage. Keep each experience to exactly a paragraph. The story doesn’t have to belong, but if you explain how you learned or triumphed in a story format, it will intrigue whom you are addressing.
Types of unique aspects you can include in your previous experience:
- Learned skills
- Projects you have worked on
- An experience that changed your perspective as a professional
- Increased growth within the company
The body of your paragraph is your time to shine. Explain to the hiring manager why you are a valuable asset to the team. Do not be afraid to give a humble brag about your career and the marvelous things you have accomplished.
Your dream job
The last part of your cover letter should explain why you want to work for this company and what values of theirs that you admire. Instead of generally explaining why you love the company, provide specific examples of what they have done as an organization that you appreciate. Even if you are not as in love with the company as you make it out to be, you should make them feel that they are your first choice.
After reading this letter, the company should want you just as much as you want them. It can feel frustrating to sell yourself in a letter, but a required cover letter gives you the advantage to show the company who you are and why you are unique. We wish you the best of luck with your job applications!