Three Ways to Kill a Cover Letter

Want to avoid being that guy or gal?

You know what we’re talking about. You submit a stellar resume, have a solid connection to the company and bam! Your cover letter stinks.

Well, we’re pretty sure if you’re able to avoid some of these initial blunders you’ll succeed in avoiding the slush pile .

1. To Whom It May Concern. Just don’t do it. Louise Kursmark, the author of 15-Minute Cover Letter told U.S. News & World Report, “The employer should say who they want the letter to be addressed to.”

So, what if you don’t know to whom the letter should be addressed?  Simply call the company or do a Google or LinkedIn search to do your due diligence.

2. If you’re including typos and misspelled words, “your” going to miss a good opportunity. This goes without saying, especially in the media world! Spell check is not the end all and be all.  Kursmark added, “Your letter is an indication of your communication skills. If you can’t write a letter for a job, what are you going to do when you’re writing emails, or speaking to people on the telephone?”

 3. If you’re using a form letter, it will come across as impersonal. As also pointed out in the piece, yes, it’s good to have a template to use for your cover letters. The bad news? Not customizing it.

Specifically tailor each cover letter with your skills and experience relevant to the opportunity you’re pursuing. “You don’t want to give the impression to the people reading it that you’re applying for any job. A custom letter explains how you can be of value to the position and how you can help the company.”