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Cover Letter Team Skills

Writing a Cover Letter that Stands Out

November 5, 2012 at 8:33 pm

By Jackson Reeves

Are you afraid of missing out on your dream job because you don’t have top-tier cover letter?  Have you been wondering what you can do to ensure that hiring managers don’t relegate your cover letter to the bottom of the pile?  If so, here are a few helpful tips that can make your cover letter stand out from the competition.

Cover letters are one of the most important self-promoting tools that you can use in your job search.  However, many people are unsure of what it takes to create an impressive cover letter.

You only have a few seconds to grab the manager’s attention, so every detail is important. You can focus on three primary elements to effectively communicate your qualifications through a cover letter: content, tone, and style.

Content

Content entails all the information that you include within your cover letter.  Remember that your cover letter is a complementary tool to your resume, so don’t reiterate too much information that you already mentioned on your resume.

Focus on the soft skills that you weren’t able to describe in your resume, such as leadership ability and teamwork.  Utilize your cover letter as an opportunity to elaborate on a few specific examples that highlight your qualifications.  Tell stories that communicate your uniqueness and identity.

Example:

Before

In the past, I have demonstrated the ability work in teams by helping create a website.

After

During my internship, I successfully completed a team project, which involved creating a website.  Although I had no previous web design experience, I helped determine an action plan, delegate tasks, and keep everyone on schedule.  Our manager was very pleased with the website and it became a valuable resource for people within our business unit.

Tone

Now that you have selected the right content for your cover letter, you should ensure that you use the correct tone.  Creating a tone requires a delicate balance.  You should stress your enthusiasm to get the job without sounding cocky and overconfident.

Once you have chosen an appropriate tone, you need make sure that you maintain that tone consistently throughout the cover letter.  If you alternate between multiple tones, then you will sound unconfident.  Keeping your document in active voice ensures a strong and effective tone.

Example:

Before

I hope that you will consider me for this Financial Analyst position because I believe that I am a good fit.

After

I look forward to the opportunity to interview for this Financial Analyst position because I can use my previous experience as a Financial Analyst Intern with Morgan Stanley, as well as the knowledge from my Bloomberg Terminal Certification, to be a strong contributor.

Style

People often forget to focus on style when developing their cover letters.  Even if you use the correct content and tone, your cover letter might be overlooked because of lack of design style and grammatical shortcomings.

Below are a few tools that you can use to enhance your document design and make your cover letter more readable.

  • Headings
  • Bullets
  • Conciseness

You should also make sure to vary your sentence structure, so that your letter doesn’t become boring.  Don’t forget to proofread your document multiple times to filter out any grammatical errors.  Simple grammatical mistakes can instantly turn off your reader and negate everything else you have done correctly.

Example:

Before

I have many qualities that I can leverage in order to excel as a Software Developer at Cisco Systems.  I previously gained some very valuable programming experience during my internship with Juniper.  I successfully developed a web application, which hardware technicians are now using for reporting problems in the field.  I also gained many valuable communication skills in my Leadership Communication course at Kenan-Flagler Business School.  I worked as a consultant for the Diversity Department, where I successfully presented my ideas for a new initiative to a panel of professionals.  The Diversity Department soon implemented the initiative on campus. Finally, I have a significant amount of experience utilizing the waterfall methodology for software development.  I completed several projects under the waterfall method as an intern at Intel.

After

Through my experience as a student at Kenan-Flagler Business School and as an intern at two technology companies, I have gained several skills that will help me excel as a Software Developer at Cisco Systems.  These skills include the following:

  • Programming Experience. During my internship with Juniper, I gained valuable programming experience.  I successfully developed a web application with hardware technicians are now using for reporting problems in the field.
  • Communication Ability. I also learned valuable communication skills in my Leadership Communication course at Kenan-Flagler Business School.  On a project, I worked as a consultant for the Diversity Department, where I successfully presented my ideas for a new initiative to a panel of professionals.  The Diversity Department soon implemented the initiative on campus, and they are currently seeing positive results.
  • Waterfall Methodology Skills. I have a significant amount of experience using the waterfall methodology for software development.  I completed several development projects under the waterfall method as an intern at Intel, and my manager was thoroughly pleased with my work.

Summary

Remember that your content, tone, and style are interdependent pieces of your cover letter.  In order to create a cover letter that stands out, you must effectively use each of these elements to communicate why the manager should choose you.  These writing efforts should build on each other.  Make sure that each of the above elements works to communicate your own unique identity, and you will surely stand out from the competition.

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Entry filed under: Job-search Communication.

The make-or-break page: So what’s the “About Us” about?Top 5 Most Common Resume Mistakes

When looking for a new job, many postings require you to submit a cover letter with your application. As you put together this essential document, this team member cover letter example and the helpful do’s and don’ts can help you craft a cover letter that sets you apart from the competition:

  • Don’t be afraid to use a cover letter template to get things going. Just be sure you fully customize it so your letter highlights your experience and helps your personality shine through.
  • Do consider adding a headline to your document. For example, you might want to include a headline like “Four Reasons I’m Your Next Best Team Member.”
  • Don’t hesitate to include honest, genuine writing in your cover letter. Employers want to know more about you and what you’re all about rather than read a boring, canned letter.
  • Do cut out the fluff from your cover letter. Statements like “team player” or “people person” should be deleted and descriptive statements that show off your achievements should be included.

Team Member Advice

Are you a sales team member with the experience, knowledge, and people skills to succeed? The cover letter examples below have been created specifically for professionals seeking sales team member jobs. Create a polished, persuasive cover letter by using our cover letter examples as a base. Then tweak and update the example you choose to reflect your background and personality. Start now and get on the path to getting the job you want quicker.

Cover Letter Tips for Team Member

When you’re looking for jobs as a Team Member, you’ll want to put to use the most effective job seeking skills. In order to help you out with this, have put together a list of tips to keep you on track.

1. Stay positive. Having a positive mindset is one of the most important aspects of finding a new job. Doing so will allow you to keep everything in perspective and remember that your unemployment is only temporary.

2. Find a part time gig. If you’re worried about the financial stresses of unemployment, you can always find part time work. Moreover, you never know where this part-time opportunity could lead.

3. Make a plan. Devising a plan with goals that can be accomplished on a daily or weekly basis is one of the best ways to maximize your productivity and time. For example, you could try to send out a certain number of cover letters per week.

4. Connect with your network. When it doubt, reach out to personal and professional contacts you’ve met along the way that could offer insight into the job market. Their advice will be valuable, and you never know where that next job lead will come from.

5. Make use of social media. Use websites such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to expand your network. Keep in mind that employers also use these sites to find out more about applicants.

Team Member Job Seeking Tips

When it comes to finding jobs as a Team Member, you’ll want to think of your cover letter as your calling card. Keep your cover letter in top shape with the following tips.

1. Don’t exceed two pages. With the exception of academics or doctors who may be using curricula vitae (CVs), there’s no need to write more than two pages. cover letter writing should be relevant and concise.

2. Do use bullet points wherever appropriate and align the text flush left. These simple formatting adjustments will immediately improve the clarity of your writing.

3. Don’t rely on generic language. If you are trying to describe your unique work experience, be sure to steer clear of overly used phrases such as “hard working” and “team player. “

4. Do introduce your work history section with a “Summary of Skills” section. Doing so offers your reader with an overview of your professional qualifications.

5. Do list your work history in the following recommended order: title of position, employer, city and state of employer, and employment dates.

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