Nail the Cover Letter!

Article excerpt

Nail the Cover Letter! by Ron & Caryl Krannich. 2005. Manassas Park, VA: Impact Publications, 199 pages, Soft Cover, $17.99

Intended Audience: A, D

Major Headings from Table of Contents:

Power Up Your Job Search With Dynamite Letters; Myths and Realities; Essential Job Search Letters; Form, Structure, and Design; Organization and Content; Top Quality Production; Effective Distribution; Implementation and Follow-Up Techniques; Evaluate Your Effectiveness; Using email, Faxes, and the Internet; Letter Sampler: 47 Dynamite Examples.

How is the book most useful for its intended audience?

Nail the Cover Letter! presents the basics of business writing for a very specific niche audience - job seekers. When faced with job search, whether willingly or by default, one may fail to understand that good writing is the key to opening an employer's door. This book is an excellent tutorial, providing both solid writing instruction and effective tools to evaluate one's progress toward proficiency.

The top five things you learned from reading this book:

1. Approach letters: new, inclusive terminology for a wonderful written technique to advance a time-honored concept - networking.

2. Focus piece: an enticing addendum to the cover letter, inviting the reader to learn more with a flavorful economy of words.

3. Metrics to evaluate the writer's proficiency: valuable for me as a tutor and coach. Now I can point to an effective tool when I tutor my clients in the fine art of letter writing.

4. Job search contract: I like this idea for enforcing the job seeker's commitment to the search. An excellent action tool.

5. The psychology of the signature: The message sent, whether by signing one's full given name or one's nickname. Very interesting.

Effective communication is the power propelling one to success in the job hunt. The techniques, tools, and trade secrets shared in Nail the Cover Letter! demonstrate the power of this job-search tool. In this, their newest job-search book, Drs. Ron and Caryl Krannich provide astute readers with three essentials to create highly effective correspondence:

The What: the definition of superior written correspondence for the job search

The Why: an initial description of how Human Resource personnel and hiring managers think and why well-developed letters are highly effective

The How: a tutorial in business letter writing, from the basics of format and font to the finesse of focus on the reader's true needs

Additionally, the authors include periodic evaluations, encouraging readers to put to use their new-found knowledge and review their grasp of each major concept in the book.

The What, Why and How

First, the definition (What): Cover letters, say the authors, are interview-generating communications created to get the employer to take action on your resume. …