“How to Write a Cover Letter” (Susan Adams, Forbes.com)

In “How to Write a Cover Letter,” Susan Adams gives some excellent advice on how to tackle this tricky task. The source of the problems with most of the cover letters I revise is inadequate preparation. Before you even start writing your letter, take notes and gather material. Read recent news articles about the company and industry and jot down trends and figures that are relevant to the job to which you are applying. Make a list of the job responsibilities, assignments and expected outcomes. Next to that, list your noteworthy experiences and main accomplishments at your current and recent jobs and internships. Look for common themes among the three lists – industry news, job responsibilities, your accomplishments – to help you connect them in your cover letter.

As you’re writing the cover letter, make sure that it answers the question, “Why am I the best person for this job?” Too many applicants answer the question, “Why is this the best job for me?” Follow the rule of show, not tell: use a lot of anecdotes (from your list above) and only a few character adjectives (creative, persistent, innovative) that apply to the job description.

Visit http://www.forbes.com/sites/susanadams/2011/03/24/how-to-write-a-cover-letter/ to read the original article.

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