Friday, June 19, 2009

Don't include a cover letter?

This post from BNET refers to the advice from David Silverman, a business writing teacher, to not include a letter when you are applying for work. Here is the one reason you would not include a cover letter:
  • The employer told you not to
Here are the reasons why applicants don't include a cover letter:
  • They put together their application at 11:58 when the posting closes at 12 midnight
  • They think their name or their mother's brother's uncle will get them an interview
  • They can't write
Those all look pretty bad--when they converge, it is a cold call from the applicant abyss.

There aren't many library jobs (ok, there are no library jobs) where you would never have to write. You have to verbalize everything in libraries and articulate directions. The cover letter is how you show them you can do that, so you get into the interview and demonstrate your speaking and persuasive abilities.

Ignore people who tell you not to worry about the cover letter--unless the employer has directly told you to leave it off for some reason.


Andy said...


The first thing that you need to focus on is making a standout cover letter and resume. When writing one, always make sure to sell yourself effectively. Highlight your qualifications and past experiences and make them seem indispensable. Sound like a true professional in your sample cover letters and make no room for errors such as misspellings and typos. Address the right person by name because this tells the employer that you’ve actually done your research and are excited to know more about the company.

bookish37 said...

The site that is linked to in Andy's comments will give you some instruction on how to write cover letters. I can't find out too much more about the site--though it does look like it might connect to a resume writing service (nothing wrong with that if you know what you are getting)--so for what it is worth, his advice is fine and the linked site looks ok.

Sorry for the long comment: sometimes I get link spam in my comment section, so I try to verify who is writing.