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Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec
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Communicating Your Fit in a Cover Letter - Staci Collins and Ivy Exec

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Today you can get hired off a well-written email and your online profile. Social networking transparency is shortening hiring processes, and your corresponding collateral. Don’t go back more than 15 …

Today you can get hired off a well-written email and your online profile. Social networking transparency is shortening hiring processes, and your corresponding collateral. Don’t go back more than 15 years on resume and don’t make your e-cover an entire page. So what information is right to include in such short format? This webinar is for job seekers who want to learn from an expert how to communicate their strengths in fewer words.

Staci Collins, Ivy Exec’s Senior Resume Writer, has over 15 years of experience partnering with managers at all levels in High Technology, Management Consulting and Healthcare Management to build their careers via career strategy, career assessment and selection, brand identification, PAR development and mapping, and strategic resume and cover letter development. She’s collaborated with over 1000 managers to identify and achieve their career objectives. Staci has worked at top-tier companies such as Accenture and Ernst & Young in change management, human resources, and strategic planning. She received her MBA from the Haas School of Business, University of California, and Bachelor of Arts from Harvard.

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  • 1. Communicating Your Fit in a Cover LetterStaci Collins, Senior Resume Specialist, Ivy Exec Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com 1
  • 2. About Staci• Senior Resume Specialist at Ivy Exec• 15 years as Executive Career coach• 7 years in consulting with Accenture, Ernst & Young• 7 years Staff and Adjunct Career Adviser at Haas• 1,100 managers and professionals coached• MBA in organizational behavior from Haas; BA in anthropology from Harvard• Specialist in technical career changers, consulting, high tech, healthcare, and non-profit - and finding the career & fulfillment you want Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 2
  • 3. Outline What’s the Purpose of a Cover Letter? Cover Letter Trends Aesthetics and Formatting Content o Your Fit o Recent Experience o Relevant Accomplishments Don’ts E-CoversQ &A Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 3
  • 4. Poll QuestionsPoll Question: How many of you are actively looking for a new job?What’s different today vs. five to 10 years ago? Senior execs and retained recruiters are your audience now Executives are busier than ever, their share of mind for you is smaller Online media has changed how people are vetted & how we take in information The bar is higher: you must deliver more information in less space Markets can be flooded. You must make the case very quickly There’s a greater demand for specificity, authenticity, credibility and transparency Times have changed. . . has your cover? Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 4
  • 5. Purpose of a cover letter: To get them to read your resume To show how your background fits with their needs To get them interested in your background To deliver a taste of your brand (what it would be like working with you) Tohighlight the overall areas you’ve worked in and results of what you’vedone; (you provide details in the resumes) NOT: go on and on about how you believe “you can sing like the nextAmerican Idol” Note:A dose of humility is always helpful. Not really about you, aboutwhat you’ve done for others. Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 5
  • 6. When someone looks at your cover letter, he/she Forms an opinion in 4 - 10 seconds Has no doubt looked at many cover letters before looking at yours Looks for key information in expected places Wants to know what you do immediately Would like to be taken on an easy journey to understanding your fit for the position Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 6
  • 7.  In fashion now:  Out of fashion: o Begin with paragraph about the o Claim “Idol” statements company & your interest/fit o Thick blocks of text o Use key words from actual job description for fast or computer o Multiple fonts/sizes, graphics, colors, matching (narrative or list) too much bold; Underlining o 2/3 of a page o More than one page o Lots of white space for notes o Large blocks of text without numbers o LinkedIn URL/website o “Chatty” or overly clever covers o Brief client quotes o Lots of personal information about your goals Charts linking your skills to their needs are very welcome Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 7
  • 8. Aesthetics: Inviting to the Eye Match the type to your resume Use a serif type face (as opposed to a sans serif):  Garamond: 10.5 or 11  Palatino Linotype: 10 or 10.5  Cambria: 10  Times New Roman: 10.5+ Same font and font size throughout Not too small (makes your background seem small) Use bullet points and chart formatting where possible Use bolding, italics, and ALL-CAPS with discretion Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 8
  • 9. Location of Information: Poll Question: What are you using your cover letter for? Most letters should have 4 to 5 brief paragraphs or sections. Paragraph 1: Introduction – State who you are and how you learned of the opportunity - from networking, from a colleague, friend, or job board. Then say what attracts you to the company and the specific position. – Explain why your role / skills / experiences matches whatever you’re applying for – Keep this short - 2 to 3 sentences is best. Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 9
  • 10. Location of Information: Paragraph 2: Your Background – This is usually your longest paragraph. Start out by writing what you’re currently doing, and your most recent accomplishments. Focus on keyword skills (e.g. customer data analysis) and whatever you did that’s applicable to whatever you’re applying for. – A reverse chronological structure works well because most of the time, your most relevant experience will also be the most recent. – Use no more than 5 sentences for this one. Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 10
  • 11. Location of Information: Paragraph 3: Your Overall Career – For most of you, you career is long enough that you must summarize your experience, e.g. 7 years as a engineer, 3 in product development..don’t just list every job in reverse chronological order – Highlight your accomplishments most relevant to the job. Up to 5 overall Paragraph 4: Conclusion – If you have any unique qualifiers (e.g. you’re from India and looking to return there; or you successfully managed your family’s funds), you want to mention it here as another selling point. – Remind them that your resume is attached, and say that you look forward to hearing from them soon. Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 11
  • 12. Content: Charting Requirement/Responsibilities  My Experience – Coordinate forecasting and – At Barclays Global budgeting activities Investors, developed annual operating budgets, and periodic forecast updates thereon. – Oversee adherence to – At Federal Home Loan company financial policies and Bank, monitored interest-rate procedures risk, capital adequacy, and investment limits, all subject to strict policies. Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 12
  • 13. Accomplishments: a definitionA discrete project that you managed: scope, scale, on-time, under budget, overcame obstacles Improvements over time (e.g. – annual % increases/decreases) Has a result/benefit (make money or save money; give #s whenever you can) “Selected to” “First-ever” “In spite of…” “Grew revenues x% OR from $x to $Y” Replace: o Did thus and such to improve something; with o Did thus and such that improved something X% Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 13
  • 14. Job Opening Cover Letter: Preferred ExampleYour recent posting on IvyExec.com for Chief Financial Officer, Ref Code, captured myattention. I have a strong background in financial management. My qualifications are anexcellent match for your key needs. The following summarizes my experience:Having grown TVM Group from $13MM to $85MM in Sales Revenue and overseeing thesuccessful sale to XXX International for nearly $200MM, my position was eliminated, asexpected. I am now seeking a CFO position with a high growth, pre IPO, high-tech corporation.My background includes extensive experience in Financial and Accounting Management with keyaccomplishments and strengths in:Sale of Corporation / Pre and Post IPO Successful sale of company for close to $200MMRapid Growth Management AR Collection Exceeding Industry Standards during explosive growth from 20 to 20,000 customersInternational Experience Establishing International Operations on time, exceeding targets for 6 successive quartersI look forward to meeting with you in person to discuss my background. Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 14
  • 15. Recruiter Cover: Consultant ExampleAs a Senior Manager with heavy public consulting experience, I am forwarding myresume for your review in the anticipation I will meet the needs of one of your clients.My background includes 15+ years of experience in Business Process Improvement formajor American utilities in all regions. Highlights of my experience include:● Conducted a decision analysis to recommend 20 actions to reduce $112M in implementation project overruns by $62M● Identified process and vendor improvement to streamline performance management tool production time by 80%● Created resource management process to identify cost-to-serve initiatives resulting in 3% margin increase Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 15
  • 16. Distant Network Cover LetterDear XXXXX,It’s been too long since we’ve been in touch and I hope this letter finds things going well foryou. [Even when we do get together, we seldom talk business, so] the enclosed resume willprobably fill in some gaps for you on what I’ve been doing since B-school.As you can see, I have been primarily involved in building new businesses in consumerelectronics. If you used an iPhone recently, you used one of my products. It would be great tocount on batting 500 forever!Recently, I’ve made a career decision to look for a long-term position with a growing, butstable, small to medium-sized CE company. And I would greatly appreciate your feedback onmy resume, particularly on the areas of SaaS Applications and my Cloud experience.I would love to pick your brain for any business associates, friends, acquaintances, ororganizations who may be in the market for someone with my proven product and businessdevelopment abilities. Your advice has always been of great value.I will call you next week to see if any opportunities have come to mind. I look forward to catching up.Best regards, Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 16
  • 17. Poll QuestionDon’t: Make claims “I am confident I would be the best choice…” Bury the lead or try to take them on an “intriguing journey” Repeat the same accomplishment in different places (even if stated differently) Use too much jargon (true professionals mix technical language with colloquialisms) Write“successful” and “effective” all over the place (specifics of results, companies and countries establish credibility) Givetoo much text, or over-explain your actions; results are more important in sales process Take your accomplishments out of the jobs in which they occurred Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 17
  • 18. E-Covers: Are even shorter Can be more informal Do include links to LinkedIn and websites Can include client or boss quotes Don’t include too many attachments, just resume Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 18
  • 19. E-Cover: ExampleGood morning: Hope am not too late. I am writing to apply to join your team as a resume coach. I have developed hundreds of MBA level resumes in my coaching career at Haas School of Business, and for managers at all levels throughout the Bay Area. I have coached over 1000 in my 15+ year career. I specialize in High Technology, Management Consulting, and Healthcare. And as an Ivy League gal, my undergrad is from Harvard, I particularly like complex roles/ accomplishments to tackle. Listen to what my clients say about my resumes:● "As a result I received three offers which I am currently evaluating. Thank you.“● "While interviewing with a leading video game publisher, an executive I met with said right off the bat, "This is the best resume Ive seen. Ever." Hes not the only one."● "Well, your suggestions were fantastic, and I ended up getting an offer with them, as well as McKesson and Genentech! You really helped me smooth out my stories and succinctly capture the skills I wanted to communicate.“Perhaps, one difference is, I am a published novelist. See more about my in the attached, on my website, or on LinkedIn. Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 19
  • 20. Outside the U.S.: Cultures can be more formal, even on email Use Dear Sir and Mr./Ms. Last Name vs. first name Using Mrs./Miss – varies by culture - Ms. Is safer But that is often cut with corporate cultures, e.g. HP Way where first names are always used Useyour best judgment, err on the side of formality, respect for people, professions, and organizations…ask first In some cultures, personal information is used, e.g. wife, children’s names and ages; in the U.S. asking about these things is illegal, so we suggest leaving them off; use your best judgment elsewhere But still, everywhere these days, less is more! Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 20
  • 21. The Ivy Exec Senior Resume WritersStaci Collinsspecializes in making visible the invisible accomplishments of especially technical career changers.She has over 15 years of partnering with 1100 executives, directors and senior managers to achievetheir career goals. She has consulted in change and coached 60+ senior managers at Accenture andErnst & Young, many now partners. She earned her MBA at University of California - Haas and BA atHarvard.Laura Hillis an expert in designing career strategies and job search campaigns. Her industry experienceincludes 10 years as a career/outplacement coach and recruiter, as well as 10 years in banking withJPM Chase. She has been published in The New York Times, The WSJ, and Forbes, and has been afeatured expert on CNBCs The Wall Street Journal Report.Kim Mohiuddinwas a TORI (Toast of the Resume Industry) Award nominee in the international category and hasbeen featured in Yahoo News, NBC Chicago and Time Out NY. She is the former certification chair ofthe National Resume Writers’ Association and certified job search strategist whose resumes havebeen highlighted in multiple publications. Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 21
  • 22. The Ivy Exec Elite Resume PackageThe Elite Package is a comprehensive evaluation of your career andaccomplishments which includes a career diagnostic, a fully rewritten resumeand a coaching session focused on overcoming any professional roadblocks. In-depth intake session with your certified senior resume writer Gain valuable insight on how to articulate your skills and accomplishments when interviewing A finalized and re-written resume An enhanced Ivy Exec profile A full hour of Career Coaching (which can be used for a cover letter)To set up a 15 minute appointment to inquire about next steps, please emailresumes@ivyexec.com or http://bit.ly/ivyappointment Want more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 22
  • 23. Thank you!To set up a 15 minute appointment to discussIvy Exec’s Resume Services with either me or Meredith LeNoir, our resume services manager, please click on the link below: http://bit.ly/ivyappointmentWant more info? Go to IvyExec.com/Resume or email us at Resumes@ivyexec.com 23

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