Cover Letters From Hell

3 January 2007 at 1:33 am Leave a comment

| Peter Klein |

As a service to our student readers, we suggest you avoid these cover letter mistakes when circulating your CV to potential employers (academic or commercial).

All of us — not only students, but mature professionals as well, particularly in academia — should work hard to avoid jargon-speak.

A writer uses pseudo-legalese because he lacks confidence in his authentic voice. From undergraduates trying to ace our Creativity Test, to MBAs immersed in BizSpeak, applicants feel they must inflate their prose by imitating Dickens, or combing the thesaurus to select — sigh — precisely the wrong word.

Imagine, if you will, two roommates at Thesaurus U.:

“I aspire to obtain a beverage. The vending machine is where my path leads.”

“I wish to accompany you, since I have assembled a myriad of coins.”

“I possess coins, as well. Let’s embark.”

Via Craig Newmark.

Entry filed under: - Klein -, Ephemera.

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