MBA Career News: Writing Compelling Cover Letters

In this new blog series, our mbaMission Career Coaches offer invaluable advice and industry-related news to help you actively manage your career. Topics include building your network, learning from mistakes and setbacks, perfecting your written communication, and mastering even the toughest interviews. To schedule a free half-hour consultation with one of our mbaMission Career Coaches, click here.

When you see a job posting of interest, you should (quickly) take advantage of the opportunity and submit a compelling application featuring a targeted resume and a personalized cover letter. (You can find details about effective resume writing in one of our earlier blog posts.)

Although some people question whether potential employers read cover letters, you should assume yours will be read. Use the cover letter as an opportunity to solidify your networking efforts or explain why you want the job and why you are qualified.

The following table presents a suggested cover letter format as well as our tips for making the most of this application component.

MBA Career News: Writing Compelling Cover Letters - mbaMission
Finally, when writing and editing your cover letter, avoid the following common pitfalls:

  • Adjectives/adverbs with weak nouns/verbs
  • Vague language, cliches, empty jargon
  • Typos/grammatical errors
  • Long words, long sentences, long paragraphs (The ideal cover letter length is about three-quarters of a page.)
  • Failing to pass the “So what?” test (i.e., What purpose does the sentence serve? Is it conveying critical information that is relevant to the reader?)

Have you been admitted to business school? If so, do you want to get a head start on defining your career goals? Do you need help preparing for job interviews or learning how to effectively network with your target employers? Or maybe you want to be a top performer in your current role but are unsure how to maximize your potential. Let an mbaMission Career Coach help via a free 30-minute consultation!

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