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Let's start your week with our #SmartStart weekly series on #Tips on Writing a Good CV. This us our last episode on CV Writing. It's being an amazing journey with you. In case you missed out on any of these please go through our page. Kindly like and share our post as we build stronger CVs together.
Today, we will shed light on how to write a cover letter.
The cover letter is a tool to help introduce yourself in a memorable, personal way during a job application.
When starting to write any cover letter, it is always best to plan the content of your letter based on the requirements of the job you’re applying for. Please make a perfect summary of how you can be relevant to this role.
Your CV is intended to lay out the facts, but your cover letter is meant to convey more personality. The cover letter is your first introduction to the person who may hire you, and its goal should be to make you as memorable as possible, in a good way.
That means writing a unique cover letter for every job you apply to. Do not take verbatim from templates. Nor pre-written templates. The format of your cover letter should also match the company and the industry you’re applying to.
There is no “official format” for your cover letter or the information you include in it, but your cover letter should be visually organized, and orderly in its presentation of information.
Successful cover letters got something like this:
* Memorable introduction
* Specific, organized examples of relevant work done and problems solved
* Concise conclusion with a call to action.
What to Include in Your Cover Letter?
You shouldn’t try to fit your whole career and life into the space of a cover letter.
Your cover letter should be a carefully curated selection of stories from your career that gives the reader a clear idea of who you are and how you can add value to their company.
The Society for Human Resources surveyed organizations on resumes, cover letters and interviews and found the top three things that must be included in a cover letter are:
* How a candidate’s work experience meets job requirements.
* How a candidate’s skills meet job requirements.
* Why a candidate wants to work at the organization.
Your cover letter needs to provide this information and leave the reader convinced that you are the right person for the job.
To accomplish this, you should be using the requirements of the job to dictate the content of your cover letter and following these best practices.
Show how you can solve specific problems
Saying you’re a ‘problem-solver’ should not be the end . Don’t tell them about your amazing problem-solving skills. Explain the details of a particular problem you were key in solving and how exactly you employed your skills to solving it. Better yet, if you know the company has a particular problem you could help solve, outline how you can help solve it.
Pick an appropriate voice and tone.
You should write like yourself, but you should also pick the appropriate voice and tone for the company you’re applying to.
Researching the company will help dictate the tone you should use, which may differ greatly, depending on where you apply. For example, the tone of your letter for a legal consulting firm will likely differ from a tech start up.
Tell your story
Telling stories from your career is a great way to demonstrate your skills and give hiring manager some insight into your personality and work style.
When looking for the right stories to tell, always look to the requirements for the position in the job description.
It is also helpful to research the company further online to get a sense for the company’s culture. Before drafting your cover letter, compare your skills with the requirements for the position.
Honesty is the only policy
dishonesty on your cover letter isn’t in your best interest.
Implying or stating that you have a skill that you don’t actually have will come back to bite you upon being asked to use that skill in the interview or on the job.
Don’t sound like everyone else
“Hi, I’m ___. I’m a detail-oriented, multi-tasking, natural-born leader and I am perfect for your company.”
Hiring managers are going to read the same basic cover letters repeatedly, and you don’t want to be the last template email the hiring manager discounts before lunch. Adding a little word variation helps you standout among other applicants.
Instead of describing yourself as creative, try imaginative. You’re inventive, not innovative. You’re not determined, you’re tenacious. These word variations at least show that you can think beyond what the average applicant is willing to do.
End with a call to action
End your letter with a reason for them to call you. But don’t add remarks like, “I’ll call to schedule an interview.” This doesn’t make you a go-getter, it crosses a boundary.
Instead, let the call to action be polite and open ended, suggesting that you are excited to offer more information and that you’re looking forward to talking with them.
Proof your cover letter:
Always proofread your cover letter for errors and have friends and family read through the cover letter.
Your cover letter needs to be highly related to the job you’re applying to, but the way that you prove your qualifications should show who you are as an individual.
Give your cover letter a unique visual format
Formatting is a great problem in our society, keep it classy and simple. A unique visual format for your cover letter can help you stand out from other candidates in a positive way.
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