Executive Assistant Cover Letter Glassdoor

You shouldn’t try to fit your whole career and life into the space of a cover letter.

Your cover letter should be acarefully curated selection of stories from your career that gives the reader a clear idea of who you are and how you can add value to their company.

The Society for Human Resources surveyed organizations on resumes, cover letters, and interviews and found the top three things that must be included in a cover letter are:

  • How a candidate’s work experience meets job requirements.
  • How a candidate’s skills meet job requirements.
  • Why a candidate wants to work at the organization.


Your cover letter needs to provide this information and leave the reader convinced that you are the right person for the job.

To accomplish this, you should be using the requirements of the job to dictate the content of your cover letter and following these best practices.

Show how you can solve specific problems

Saying you’re a ‘problem-solver’ is about as helpful as explaining your preference for chocolate croissants over regular croissants. Don’t tell them about your amazing problem-solving skills. Explain the details of a particular problem you were key in solving and how exactly you employed your skills to solve it. Better yet, if you know the company has a particular problem you could help solve, outline how you can help solve it.

Pick an appropriate voice and tone

You should write like yourself, but you should also pick the appropriate voice and tone for the company you’re applying to.

Researching the company will help dictate the tone you want to use, which may differ greatly, depending on where you apply. For example, the tone of your letter for a legal consulting firm will likely differ from a tech startup.

Tell your story

Telling stories from your career is a great way to demonstrate your skills and give hiring managers some insight into your personality and work style.

When looking for the right stories to tell, always look to the requirements for the position in the job description.

It is also helpful to research the company further online to get a sense for the company’s culture. Before drafting your cover letter, compare your skills with the requirements for the position.

It can be helpful to use Venn diagrams to brainstorm and find what competencies you want to highlight and what specific experiences you want to share. After you create this diagram and identify what falls into both circles, overlapping subjects will direct and inspire the content of your cover letter.

Let’s say you’re applying for a marketing director position. Among other aspects in the description, the job requires several years of marketing experience, a deep knowledge of lead generation, and strong communication skills. Describe how, in your previous role as a marketing manager, you ran several campaigns for your clients and exceeded their expectations of lead generation (with specific numbers, if possible), and how you also trained and mentored new associates on how to manage their own accounts, which improved client retention rates.

Your anecdote is accomplishing a lot at once—it’s demonstrating one of your top hard skills, lead nurturing, and showcasing how you can collaborate with trainees, communicate effectively, and educate new employees on processes and client relations. You’re proving that you can meet the communication standards and marketing knowledge they’re seeking.

Honesty is the only policy

Dishonesty on your cover letter isn’t in your best interest.

Implying or stating that you have a skill that you don’t actually have will come back to bite you upon being asked to use that skill in the interview or on the job.

Don’t sound like everyone else

“Hi, I’m ___. I’m a detail-oriented, multi-tasking, natural-born leader and I am perfect for your company.”

Hiring managers are going to read the same basic cover letter repeatedly, and you don’t want to be the last template email the hiring manager discounts before lunch. Adding a little word variation helps you stand out against other applicants.

Instead of describing yourself as creative, try imaginative. You’re inventive, not innovative. You’re not determined, you’re tenacious. These word variations at least show that you can think beyond what the average applicant is willing to do.

End with a call to action

End your letter with a reason for them to contact you. But don’t add remarks like, “I’ll call to schedule an interview.” This doesn’t make you a go-getter, it crosses a boundary.

Instead, let the call to action be polite and open ended, suggesting that you are excited to offer more information and that you’re looking forward to talking with them.  

Proof your cover letter

Always proofread your cover letter for errors and have friends and family read through the cover letter.

How to Make Your Cover Letter Unique?

When thinking abouthow to make your cover letter unique, keep the following statements in mind:

  • You should make your cover letter unique and show the reader who you are as an individual.
  • You should include experience and skills that relate directly to the job posting.

These might sound like opposing statements, but they’re equally important for writing a successful cover letter.

Your cover letter needs to be highly related to the job you’re applying to, but the way that you prove your qualifications should show who you are as an individual.  

Tell a compelling story

Everyone loves a good story, and recruiters and hiring managers are no exception. Telling compelling stories from your career will make your cover letter unique and memorable for whoever reads it.

Just be sure that the stories you choose demonstrate proficiency with the skills, tools and concepts that are required by the job you’re applying for.

What makes this company your go-to choice? Why is this company special to you? Perhaps you’re attracted to the workplace culture, or perhaps you’ve always admired the business philosophy that the company lives by.

Address the recruiter or hiring manager by name

Now it’s fine to just use “Dear Sir/Madam” or “To Whom It May Concern” when addressing the recruiter. In fact, I can tell you from experience that most people use precisely these words. However, I can also tell you that most people don’t get the job. If you want to make a strong impression, then take the time to find out who you’re addressing. 

You may have to make a few phone calls or try several searches before you find the right name, but, the harder they are to find, the less likely other applicants are to do it and the more impressed they will be with you.

Give your cover letter a unique visual format

A unique visual format for your cover letter can help you stand out from other candidates in a positive way. Just be sure that the unique format you use is appropriate for the company you’re applying to and their industry.

Here’s a good example of an eye-catching cover letter and resume format:

What to Leave Off a Cover Letter?

Recruiters and hiring managers read thousands of cover letters and resumes, so make sure that you avoid thesecover letter errors:

Avoid overused phrases 

The average cover letter is going to be extremely generic and contain overused expressions such as “Thank you for taking the time to look at my resume” or “I believe that my set of skills make me a great fit for the job.” While none of these lines hurt your chance of getting the job, they certainly don’t help either.

Career coach Angela Copeland says, “stay away from phrases that are known to annoy hiring managers, such as ‘heavy lifting’ or ‘think outside the box’ or ‘game-changer.’”

Here are some more phrases that make recruiters and hiring managers groan:

  • “To Whom It May Concern”
  • “I’m not sure if you know”
  • “Dynamic”
  • “Please feel free”
  • “Significant”
  • “Self-Starter,” “Detail-Oriented,” and “Forward-Thinker”
  • “Really, truly, deeply”

Recruiters and hiring managers go through hundreds of cover letters and get tired of these clichés. They’re waiting for something new and refreshing to come along and it’s in your best interest to do so.

Never include irrelevant information

Never include irrelevant information in your cover letter. Irrelevant information can confuse or bore the reader, causing them to miss important points in your cover letter.

How to Submit a Cover Letter?

The longer you “sit on” a cover letter to edit and re-write it, the longer you prolong the opportunity for someone else to get the attention of the hiring manager you want to impress.

You should submit your cover letter as soon as you are certain that:

  1. Your cover letter, resume and portfolio work are free from errors.
  2. Your cover letter is written in a way that balances professionalism with personality.
  3. Your cover letter catches the reader’s interest from the first sentence and maintains it throughout.
  4. Your cover letter uses the requirements for the job and information on the company as a guide for its content.
  5. Your cover letter tells stories that are filled with examples that satisfy job requirements and make you stand out positively as an individual and a potential employee.

Submitting your cover letter

Always follow the submission instructions laid out in the job description when submitting your cover letter.

If you are submitting the letter though a website with fillable fields, be sure that no formatting or content errors have occurred.

Learn More!

Cover letters don’t get enough credit today, but they are actually a valuable instrument in the job seeker’s toolkit. They give you a chance to stand out and share more of you than your resume and application allow.

Here’s how to write an awesome cover letter:

Toss Out Those Templates

The most popular advice for writing cover letters usually involves using a template. But you should focus on customizing your letter to your audience, not filling out an existing template. When you’re applying to a medical supply company, for example, your cover letter should be different from the one you’re writing for a retail organization. Conduct research on the company as well as the position to determine the best way to customize. Brush up on their competitors as well to develop a deeper understanding about what makes them unique.

[Related: Search Open Jobs in Your Area Hiring Now!]

You want them to know you did your homework and are engaged with the industry. Use your research wisely in your cover letter. For example, note how their recent press release that announced a new project management solution reminded you of some of the hurdles you overcame in the past during one of your big marketing campaigns.

Tell Your Story

The framework for your cover letter should depend on the stories you want to tell. Remember, a cover letter complements your resume; it does not regurgitate it. Hiring professionals want to see who you are. Before drafting your cover letter, compare your skills with the requirements for the position. Use venn diagrams to brainstorm and find what competencies you want to highlight and what specific experiences you want to share. Assign “me” to the circle on the left and “employer” to the circle on the right. Under “me,” list your experiences and skill set, and under “employer,” add the preferred and required skills they list in their job description. Then identify what falls into both circles, and that overlap will inspire the content of your cover letter. You have to connect your relevant skills to those necessary for the job.

[Related: What Interview Questions Will You Get Asked?]

Let’s say you’re applying for a marketing director position. Among other aspects in the description, the job requires several years of marketing experience, a deep knowledge of lead generation, and strong communication skills. Describe how, in your previous role as a marketing manager, you ran several campaigns for your clients and exceeded their expectations of lead generation (with specific numbers, if possible), and how you also trained and mentored new associates on how to manage their own accounts, which improved client retention rates.

Your anecdote is accomplishing a lot at once—it’s demonstrating one of your top hard skills, lead nurturing, and showcasing how you can collaborate with trainees, communicate effectively, and educate new employees on processes and client relations. You’re proving that you can meet the communication standards and marketing knowledge they’re seeking.

Express Your Passion

You shouldn’t just say that you want the job or that you love your industry. You have to show your passion. Share why your career path best suits you and how your love for your work drives and motivates you. For example, answer some questions about what made you want to enter the field, how your personality helps you succeed, and what past experiences influenced your career decisions.

Recruiters always remember the personal side of cover letters—this is when you become more than just another applicant. They connect your experiences with your name because you’re giving them another dimension of you, sharing what makes you unique.

[Related: Best Places to Work]

Pick an Appropriate Voice and Tone

Another benefit of researching the company is that you will get an idea of what their culture is like. You can use their culture to dictate the tone you want to use, which may differ greatly, depending on where you apply. For example, the tone of your letter for a legal consulting firm likely will differ from a tech startup. The former may be more formal, while the latter is most likely a casual work environment. But ultimately, you don’t want to write your voice out of the cover letter. Be authentic and show some personality.

If you’re unsure about what tone works best, select a more conversational approach. That doesn’t mean use slang. You still need to use proper and professional grammar. But the tone and language should be engaging, pleasant, and warm.

End with a Call to Action

It’s no secret that you want to advance through the application process. End your letter with a reason for them to contact you. But don’t add remarks like, “I’ll call to schedule an interview.” This doesn’t make you a go-getter, it crosses a boundary. Instead, let the call to action be polite and open ended, suggesting that you are excited to offer more information and that you’re looking forward to further discussing your value.

Proof It

Finally, have friends and family read through the cover letter. Ask them to set aside their biases and assess the effectiveness of it. Does it capture who you are as a person? Did you use the right tone and voice? Does it make them want to call you so they can learn more about you? This is crucial to landing an interview.

These tips should help you land an interview for the job of your dreams.

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Did you land an interview? Research questions you might be asked, and see answers that helped other job seekers. ______________________________________________________________________________________________

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