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Good Practices, Common Mistakes Doncho Minkov Telerik Corporation www.telerik.com.

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Presentation on theme: "Good Practices, Common Mistakes Doncho Minkov Telerik Corporation www.telerik.com."— Presentation transcript:

1 Good Practices, Common Mistakes Doncho Minkov Telerik Corporation

2 Why We Need a Cover Letter? Why We Need a Cover Letter? Template-based Cover Letters Template-based Cover Letters How to Write a Good Cover Letter? How to Write a Good Cover Letter? Lying in the Cover Letter Lying in the Cover Letter Dont Make Mistakes Dont Make Mistakes 2

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4 The cover letter is a way of: The cover letter is a way of: Introducing yourself to potential employers Introducing yourself to potential employers Explaining why you are suitable for the position Explaining why you are suitable for the position Employers look for individualized and thoughtfully written cover letters Employers look for individualized and thoughtfully written cover letters This is a method of screening out applicants who This is a method of screening out applicants who Are not sufficiently interested in their position Are not sufficiently interested in their position Who lack necessary basic skills Who lack necessary basic skills 4

5 Cover letters are typically divided into three categories Cover letters are typically divided into three categories The application letter or invited cover letter which responds to a known job opening The application letter or invited cover letter which responds to a known job opening The prospecting letter or uninvited cover letter which inquires about possible positions The prospecting letter or uninvited cover letter which inquires about possible positions 5

6 The cover letter is the best way to show how motivated you are The cover letter is the best way to show how motivated you are Why you want to start a career in this particular company Why you want to start a career in this particular company Why this exact position Why this exact position Why in this sphere Why in this sphere Etc. Etc. 6

7 Some people think that nobody reads the cover letters Some people think that nobody reads the cover letters The cover letter is a meaningless requirement The cover letter is a meaningless requirement Such people believe that strong CV and rich experience is enough Such people believe that strong CV and rich experience is enough In some companies this could be true, but in the best employers this is great mistake In some companies this could be true, but in the best employers this is great mistake If a cover letter is requested If a cover letter is requested Be sure it will be read Be sure it will be read At least at a glance At least at a glance 7

8 In the most prestigious and well-structured companies the cover letter is very important In the most prestigious and well-structured companies the cover letter is very important The human resources (HR) team at the company definitely reads it The human resources (HR) team at the company definitely reads it If the cover letter is impressive If the cover letter is impressive You will be immediately contacted and invited to an interview You will be immediately contacted and invited to an interview Even if your experience is not great Even if your experience is not great 8

9 It is always worth to send a well-prepared and impressive cover letter It is always worth to send a well-prepared and impressive cover letter Especially written for exactly this company and exactly this job position Especially written for exactly this company and exactly this job position Never "reuse" your cover letters Never "reuse" your cover letters A good cover letter for certain company and job position is in most cased bad cover letter for another position A good cover letter for certain company and job position is in most cased bad cover letter for another position 9

10 If you apply for a second time in given company If you apply for a second time in given company Be sure to rewrite your cover letter Be sure to rewrite your cover letter Most good companies will disregard your application Most good companies will disregard your application The same cover letter means that The same cover letter means that Your motivation has not changed Your motivation has not changed Your qualification is not changed Your qualification is not changed 10

11 Be sure that the HR professionals will try to find all the information about you they can Be sure that the HR professionals will try to find all the information about you they can They will search in Google about you They will search in Google about you They will try to find your Facebook profile They will try to find your Facebook profile They will try to find information about you from current employees They will try to find information about you from current employees 11

12 The HR professionals never forget if you had ever sent a bad job application The HR professionals never forget if you had ever sent a bad job application They will find you, be sure They will find you, be sure Thats why you should always carefully prepare your job application before sending it Thats why you should always carefully prepare your job application before sending it Think a bit how to proceed the next time when you apply for a job Think a bit how to proceed the next time when you apply for a job 12

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14 The best way to guarantee a failure when applying for a job is to use a template-based cover latter The best way to guarantee a failure when applying for a job is to use a template-based cover latter Once we received a really bad cover letter like this: Once we received a really bad cover letter like this: Dear …, I would like to apply for Your Company because I am skillful and highly enthusiastic candidate. I want to grow in Your Company, to improve my knowledge and skills. Your company is the best and I want to be part of it. I am hard worker and I am sure I will help your business to grow. 14

15 When using a template for cover letters When using a template for cover letters You say nothing about why you want exactly this position in exactly this company You say nothing about why you want exactly this position in exactly this company How your experience in the past will help you do exactly this job How your experience in the past will help you do exactly this job Why you really match the requirements from the job offer Why you really match the requirements from the job offer Phrases like Your Company are always a bad idea! Phrases like Your Company are always a bad idea! Once we received a cover letter starting withDear … (with three dots left from the template) Once we received a cover letter starting withDear … (with three dots left from the template) 15

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17 A good cover letter: A good cover letter: Shows that you apply exactly for this company, not some other Shows that you apply exactly for this company, not some other You are interested in this particular company and this particular position You are interested in this particular company and this particular position Not just searching for some job Not just searching for some job Shows you have a clear idea of the position Shows you have a clear idea of the position What are your future responsibilities, etc. What are your future responsibilities, etc. You match the requirements You match the requirements You have the required skills and abilities You have the required skills and abilities 17

18 A good way for writing a cover letter is to read A good way for writing a cover letter is to read About the company About the company About the offered position About the offered position The requirements stated in the job offer The requirements stated in the job offer The detailed job descriptions The detailed job descriptions Write 1-2 sentences matching the requirements Write 1-2 sentences matching the requirements Not directly Not directly Not exactly in the order as in the job offer Not exactly in the order as in the job offer Not exactly with the same words and phrases Not exactly with the same words and phrases 18

19 You could write for example that You could write for example that examine and analyze the technical documentation of competitors In my previous job I had to read a lot of technical documentation and thus I believe that I will be able to find, read and analyze various types of articles, documents, manuals, etc. Dont use this sentence in your cover letter Dont use this sentence in your cover letter Say it with your words, matching your experience and skills Say it with your words, matching your experience and skills If you dont have similar experience, say for example that If you dont have similar experience, say for example that Use your own words Use your own words I like to read blogs and articles and I know that technical documentation is different but it should also be interesting and challenging. 19

20 It is a bad idea to write: It is a bad idea to write: How you prove this? How you prove this? What are your arguments? What are your arguments? If you are not good in something If you are not good in something Just skip writing about it Just skip writing about it You cant say you are good at something without any arguments You cant say you are good at something without any arguments How you know you are good in this How you know you are good in this Just describe it Just describe it I am very good in examining and analyzing the technical documentation of competitors. 20

21 You could write that You could write that This could never be used as a template This could never be used as a template It depends on your past experience, interests, skills, personal character qualities, etc. It depends on your past experience, interests, skills, personal character qualities, etc. excellent communication skills I believe I have a sense of communication because I had organized a small technical seminar at school and at the university where I needed to contact the speakers, arrange the seminar venue, invite the attendees, attract sponsors, etc. Given the following requirement: Given the following requirement: 21

22 Example of a bad way to match the requirements: Example of a bad way to match the requirements: This sound like This sound like Saying something without arguments is always a bad idea Saying something without arguments is always a bad idea Either argument well your statement or just dont talk about it Either argument well your statement or just dont talk about it I have excellent communication skills. I am 18 years old and I have very rich experience in professional project management in large teams. 22

23 This is a common question This is a common question It is best if you can research who will be reading your cover letter It is best if you can research who will be reading your cover letter That way you can address it directly to them That way you can address it directly to them It is risky It is risky You can misspell the name You can misspell the name If you don't know the exact person If you don't know the exact person Write 'Mr./Mrs.', 'HR Manager', etc. Write 'Mr./Mrs.', 'HR Manager', etc. Something more common Something more common Dear Svetlin Nikolov and Training staff,

24 Do You Really Need to Do It?

25 Never Lie! Never Lie! Example: Example: If you lie in your CV or cover letter If you lie in your CV or cover letter You will be caught at the interview and your eventual interview will end very soon You will be caught at the interview and your eventual interview will end very soon Write in the cover letter something matching Write in the cover letter something matching The requested requirements The requested requirements Provide valid supporting arguments Provide valid supporting arguments I have 10 years of experience with Silverlight. 25

26 You could prove that you match certain requirements either You could prove that you match certain requirements either By showing similar experience By showing similar experience By saying you have read about this in the past By saying you have read about this in the past By sharing that you have a friend who always talks to you about this By sharing that you have a friend who always talks to you about this You explain you want to learn this, you had read an article and watched a video tutorial You explain you want to learn this, you had read an article and watched a video tutorial Always use valid arguments and never lie Always use valid arguments and never lie If you say you are …, find supporting arguments If you say you are …, find supporting arguments 26

27 Another example: Another example: How you prove this? How you prove this? You could say that You could say that or better explain that or better explain that Use valid arguments based on past experience Use valid arguments based on past experience Not only work experience, but general Not only work experience, but general I am a hard-worker … at the university I always have high grades because I always come very well prepared for the exams … … when an important work is waiting, I cannot sleep until I get it done … 27

28 Spelling, Punctuation and Formatting Mistakes

29 When writing your CV and cover letter, use a spell checker When writing your CV and cover letter, use a spell checker Dont make spelling mistakes, punctuation mistakes, etc. Dont make spelling mistakes, punctuation mistakes, etc. MS Word, Google Docs and the other text processing applications have very good spell checkers MS Word, Google Docs and the other text processing applications have very good spell checkers Just use them Just use them 29

30 Format your CV and cover letter well Format your CV and cover letter well At this point you can use templates At this point you can use templates Just type "CV template" or "sample cover letter" in Google and you will find lots of examples Just type "CV template" or "sample cover letter" in Google and you will find lots of examples Be sure to use only the styles, layout and formatting from the best examples you find Be sure to use only the styles, layout and formatting from the best examples you find Never use the text inside Never use the text inside Some companies use an automated software to find if your cover letter is template-based Some companies use an automated software to find if your cover letter is template-based Be sure to write it entirely in your words Be sure to write it entirely in your words 30

31 Live Demo

32 Questions?


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