cover twitter Fitness


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Revising the Application

Read your draft aloud. Listen for any awkward transitions, too-casual language,

vague or incomplete thoughts. Get out the thesaurus (or use the one on your

computer) to replace repeated words, just as you did on your resumé. To sharpen

your letter, compare what you’ve written to the example on page

Just as it’s acceptable to review samples of existing work (as you did in formulating

your resumé), downright word-for-word copying somebody else’s

application letter is a bad thing. It’s dishonest and could cost you a lot. Just suppose

other applicants use the same references you did . . . and send the exact same

letter. Imagine how “unique” you’ll look then. Secondly, a stock letter somebody

else crafted—no matter how well written—cannot convey your unique selling

propositions (USPs) as well as you can. Finally, if your cover letter doesn’t match

the “you” that shows up for an interview, you lose major points for trying to pass

yourself off as something you’re obviously

The real test for whether or not your cover letter works is this: Did you

make a clear-cut case about what you can do for the employer? If not, make a

few more tries until you nail what you really need to

Add Visual Interest

Now’s a chance to strut your stuff, design-wise. See how your letter stacks up

with these qualities as a benchmark:

• Is it visually appealing (the right amount of white space, clear print,

easy-to-read typeface)?

• Have you utilized bold type, bullets, or underlining where appropriate

(remembering that a little of this goes a long way)?

• Did you correctly observe the format of the letter style you chose? (Our

the recommendation is that you use the full block, where all text is flush

against the left margin.) design


The same rule applies to cover letters as it does to your resumé—one misspelled a word and you wind up in the Reject pile. Spell-check. But because the software

you wind up in the Reject pile. Spell-check. But because software

spell-checkers don’t catch every error, read your application letter forward.

Then read it backward, starting at the bottom right corner and looking at each

word, going right to left, line by line, up to the top. Next read each word on the

page aloud . . . slowly. Finally, ask a picky English-teacher person or some anal-retentive

type (they prefer the term “detail-oriented”) to read it.

Printing Your Application

Consistency counts! Your cover letter should be printed on the same quality and

color of paper your resumé is printed on. Whatever means you used to produce

your resumé, duplicate the procedure for your application letter