Business Communication

Effective Cover Letter: Win with the First Sentence

Writing Effective Cover Letters

(Photo Credit: Uptown Magazine)

A cover letter presents job seekers with a great opportunity to wow employers with worthwhile content and excellent writing. Elegant writing combined with relevant and substantive content relates significant information about you before the employer has a chance to meet you in person. Who isn’t impressed with beautiful language that captures the true value one can bring to the company/organization? You have a mighty obstacle, though: many others are vying for the same position. The first sentence is one of the most underappreciated parts of a cover letter. Compose a first sentence that doesn’t waste space—understanding that employers don’t want to read another uninspired cover letter.

Communicate Passion in the First Sentence of the Cover Letter

Let employers know you’re excited about the opportunities this position affords you.

Therefore, use the word “enthusiastic” or a similar word early on in the first sentence.

Identify Where You Learned about the Position

Although some employers will explicitly state to indicate where you learned about the position, let them know even if it’s not required.

Also, in your effort to inform where you viewed or heard the position advertised, use a word that will grasp the attention of the employer.

Therefore, use the word “promulgated” instead of “advertised” or “announced.”

Summarize Your Education and Experience in the First Sentence

Inform the employer of your highest degree earned in the relevant area and the relevant number of years of experience you have in the area.

If you don’t a degree or a relevant degree, then simply state your total years of relevant experience. If you don’t have any relevant experience, then just communicate your relevant academic training.

A Sample First Sentence of a Cover Letter

Using the tips given above, you’re now ready to pen a winning first sentence.

Sample Sentence: Enthusiastic about the Store Manager position promulgated at www.walmart.com, I resolved that my Harvard MBA and 12 years of executive retail management experience are markedly apropos for the position.

Need Help Writing Your Cover Letter and Resume?

If you would like assistance with developing your cover letter and resume, please feel free to contact me at antoniomdaniels@gmail.com. The cost of my quality services are quite economical.

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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7 Writing Tips for Communicating with Diverse Cultures

Business Writing

(Photo Credit: Christian Science Monitor)

When sending written communication to business professionals from a culture different than your own, familiarize yourself with their written communication preferences and acclimate your approach, style, and tone to meet their expectations.  The following is a list of 7 highly recommended tips to consider:

1. Use simple, clear language. Use precise words that don’t have the potential to confuse with multiple meanings.

2. Be brief. Use simple sentences and short paragraphs, breaking information into smaller chunks that are easier to capture and translate.

3. Use transitional elements. Using transitions from sentence to sentence and from paragraph to paragraph helps your writing to achieve the cohesion and clarity it needs.

4. Address international correspondences properly.

5. Cite numbers and dates carefully.

6. Avoid slang, idiomatic phrases, and business jargon. Mundane writing is full of slang and idiomatic phrases, phrases that mean more than the sum of all of their literal parts. Your readers may have no idea what you’re saying when you use idiomatic phrases.

7. Avoid humor and other references to popular culture. Jokes and references to popular culture usually rely on subtle cultural issues that might be completely unknown to one’s readers.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison