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English Writing Part 7: Business Letters John E. Clayton Nanjing University, Spring, 2005.

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Presentation on theme: "English Writing Part 7: Business Letters John E. Clayton Nanjing University, Spring, 2005."— Presentation transcript:

1 English Writing Part 7: Business Letters John E. Clayton Nanjing University, Spring, 2005

2 Please Turn In Your Homework Journal 1 Finished Resume

3 Syllabus 03/02 Introduction; Overview; Writing a good paragraph 03/09 Information Form; Essays – structure, thesis 03/16 Thesis Focus; Movie: Johnny LingoJournal 1 03/23 Essay Introduction and Conclusion 03/30 Movie: DaveJournal 2 04/06 Review for mid-term exam; Overcoming Fear 04/13 Mid-term examJournal 1 04/20 Resume - 1 04/27 Resume - 2Journal 2 05/04 Holiday 05/11 Business LettersJournal 1 05/18 Statement of Purpose 05/25 Statement of PurposeJournal 2 06/01 Review for final exam 06/08 Final exam

4 Business Letter Format 18 Maple St. Brome, Québec Canada, J0E 1R0 June 18, 1996 Bo Industries 1000 Main St. Montréal, QC J0E 1V0 Dear Sir ; I am an avid mountain bike rider and would like your latest catalogue on bike accessories. I saw in your advertisement in Mountain Biker. Enclosed is a check for $1.00 to cover the cost of shipping and handling. Thanking you in advance. Yours truly, (sign your name) John Smith Return address (address of letter writer) Date of letter Inside address of recipient (same as address on envelope) Salutation Body of letter Closing Space for handwritten signature Printed signature

5 What is a Cover Letter? A cover letter is a kind of business letter. It expresses your: interest qualifications for a position to a prospective employer. Some material Taken From Purdue University Writing Lab

6 What Should it Accomplish? Your cover letter should introduce the main points of your resume. It should help to “sell” you to the prospective employer.

7 Header Emma Markley Human Resources Director St. Luke's Medical Center 729 S. Paulina Chicago, IL 60612 Dear Ms. Markley: Address your letter to a specific person, ideally to the person who will interview you. Look for the person’s name in company publications, or phone the organization and ask for the person’s name or for the personnel manager.

8 Introductory Paragraph Your first paragraph should: Get the reader’s attention, stimulate interest, and be appropriate for the job you are seeking. Make your goal clear to readers. Preview the rest of your letter. Highlight the qualifications you will discuss throughout the letter.

9 Solicited or Unsolicited? Solicited Means that you are applying in response to an advertised job opening. Unsolicited Means that you are applying for a job that has not been Advertised.

10 Solicited Sample I believe that my knowledge of public relations and my proven communication and leadership skills make me a strong candidate for the position of Media Relations Coordinator that was posted by the Delta Airlines Job Opportunities Program.

11 Unsolicited Sample As a member of one of the fastest growing publishing houses in the world, do you have an opening in your acquisitions department for a recent college graduate with a major in English and publishing and editing experience?

12 Goals of the Body Paragraphs Highlight your strongest qualifications for the position. Demonstrate how these qualifications will benefit the employer. Refer employers to your enclosed resume.

13 Detail Your Experience Show (don’t tell) employers your qualifications Include specific examples of your qualifications. Use numbers, names of equipment you've used, or features of a project that may apply to the job you want. As a banking representative at Bank One, I provided quality customer service while promoting the sale of products to customers. I also handled upwards of $20,000 a day and was responsible for balancing the bank’s ATM machine.

14 Use Active Language Don’t be vague in your descriptions. Don’t use weak verbs such as tried, hoped, and attempted. Don’t use sexist language such as “chairman” and “manpower”. Vague: I worked as a ramp agent at Comair. Weak: I attempted to attract customers.

15 Use Active Language Use concrete words to describe your experience. Use present tense for current activities, past for previous accomplishments. Be specific; list dollar amounts and figures when you can. Vague: I worked as a ramp agent for COMAIR. Specific: As a ramp agent, I assisted in loading baggage, oversaw fueling the aircraft, and stocked commissary items on the aircraft. Weak: I attempted to attract customers. Strong: I initiated a program to attract customers to Pizza Hut, which resulted in a 5% increase in sales for the month of June.

16 Organizing Your Letter In general, cover letters should be no longer than one typed page. Organize your body paragraphs to emphasize your strongest and most relevant qualifications. Only include the two or three strongest qualifications from your resume.

17 Concluding Your Letter I would welcome the opportunity to discuss these and other qualifications with you. If you are interested, please contact me at (317) 555-0118 any morning before 11:00 a.m., or feel free to leave a message. Conclude by asking for a personal interview. Be flexible regarding a date and time for the interview. Be specific about how the interviewer should contact you. Include a thank you.

18 Mailing Your Letter & Resume Coordinate the design of your cover letter & resume. Be sure to send both of them -- they both reveal different kinds of information about you.

19 Key Points to Remember Appeal to company values, attitudes, goals, projects, etc. Elaborate on the information in your resume. Provide evidence of your qualifications. Proofread carefully - The letter should be error-free.

20 Homework Write and print-out a cover letter for your resume. (Assume you are applying for some job position – make up something)

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