Dear Sir or Madam: I’m the perfect candidate for the job … oh no, you’re not.

US News & World Report says to keep these 10 catch phrases off your cover letter:

1. “I meet the requirements for the position.”Explain why you’re an excellent candidate, not just an adequate one.

2. “I’m hard-working and a great communicator.” These are cliches that cause hiring managers’ eyes to glaze over …and don’t convey anything of substance.


3. “I’m a visionary leader.”  Proclaiming this about yourself comes across as, well, weird. Show accomplishments.

4. “You won’t find a candidate better qualified than me.”  This comes off as needlessly cocky hyperbole — and it’s generally inaccurate..

5. “Dear sir or madam.” In most industries, this will come across as an antiquated, stuffy salutation. If you know the hiring manager’s name, use it … if not, simply writing “dear hiring manager” is fine.


6. “I’ll call you in a week to schedule an interview.” Some people believe that asserting themselves like this will demonstrate persistence and good salesmanship, but in reality, it just annoys hiring managers.

7. “I’m willing to work for below the salary you’re offering.” Hiring managers want to hire the best person for the job, have budgeted a certain amount for the position, and aren’t going to take a weaker candidate just because she offers to work for less than the budgeted salary.

8. “I’ve attached my college transcripts, a list of references, a 15-page writing sample, and my last performance review.” Don’t overwhelm them with items they haven’t asked for and might not want.

9. “Please contact me if you’d like to see my resume.”  If you’re writing to a company about potential work, you must include your resume. It’s the first thing an employer will want to see,

10. “I really need a job. I’m desperate.” Your cover letter needs to focus on why you’d excel at the job you’re applying for, not how badly you need it.
U.S. News & World Report


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