If you are returning to the job market after being terminated from your previous position, it can be difficult to know how to handle that information with potential employers. The perfect cover letter helps establish a positive impression with the recruiter and can earn you a personal interview.
1. Think About the Impression You Want to Make
Though you may feel angry or frustrated by your termination, these emotions should not appear in your cover letter. Try to think like a recruiter and determine how you would want a potential employee's cover letter to sound.
2. Don't Discuss Your Termination
The cover letter isn't the place the mention your termination. If the recruiter wants more information about the end of your previous job, he or she will ask in a phone call or personal interview.
3. Be Positive and Professional
The perfect cover letter is written in a positive and professional manner, which means you should refrain from using informal language. Additionally, you should avoid complaining about your previous employers.
4. Tailor Information to the Job Description
Use the job description to determine the main qualifications the company values and then determine which skills to highlight in your letter. If possible, use concrete examples from your work history that showcase those skills.
5. Be Enthusiastic
Show your enthusiasm for the opportunities offered by the job and the company. It's best if you can list something specific about the company that you find exciting.
6. Be Tactfully Honest
While you shouldn't talk about your firing in your cover letter, you also shouldn't lie and say you are still employed by your former company. Instead, simply mention that you're looking forward to new challenges.
7. Showcase Self-Motivation and New Skills
If you've been using your time without work to further your education or improve your work-related skills, mention this in your cover letter. It shows self-motivation that employers find valuable.
8. Mention Benefits of Life Experience
You may also tactfully mention any additional qualifications you've gained through life experience. For example, if you've used your time away from the workforce to raise your family and run your household, you can briefly highlight your improved organizational and interpersonal skills.
9. Focus on Your Personal Value
The overall theme of your cover letter should be about the value and benefits you can bring to the company. Talk briefly about specific ways you can contribute to the company's mission.
10. Write Concisely
Remember that most recruiters spend only a few seconds skimming through a cover letter, so you want to make sure you only include the most important information without unnecessary filler.
Take it a Step Further
Once you've created a first draft your cover letter, you can use a few additional tips to refine it. One useful element you may want to add is a brief story highlighting one of your career achievements that's relevant to the job description. A story can showcase your critical thinking skills and the positive results and is more memorable than simply a list of your qualifications. If you can add numerical or quantitative data, that can make your story even more impactful. Remember to keep your writing as concise as possible and simply use brief statements to discuss the circumstances, your responsibilities, and the success of your actions. The perfect cover letter story provides essential information in an engaging and unique manner.