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July 14, 2010


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I recently started a cover letter by saying "RESUMES ARE BORING." Then listed three kick-ass bullet points: two high-profile quotes about me and my relevant work for the position and a working example of exactly the kind of thing the position is looking for.

Then I said if you really want to read my resume, it's on the next page.

I've completed my third interview with them and we'll see if I get an offer.

Ask a Manager / Alison Green

I agree that you want to avoid boring openers that sound like everyone else, but you also want to avoid sounding too much like a salesman. I'm always pretty turned off by stuff that sounds like the person had TRIED to come up with something gimmicky or is selling me too hard. The best cover letters I read are the ones that are simply conversational -- that sound like a real person writing to you, with a real personality. Not too formal, not too informal, and definitely not a sales pitch.

Greg Lane

Great suggestions and tips. IF an employer even reads a cover letter, you have to do something to really grab their attention from the beginning or they won't finish reading it, AND might not even bother looking at your resume if the cover letter doesn't grab their attention.

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