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Category Archives: Cover Letter Tips

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Your Generic Cover Letter, as Experienced by a Hiring Manager

Posted on by Jenny Foss

A version of this blog was previously posted on JobJenny.com. To Whom It May Concern: I am applying for your open job with this generic, form-looking cover letter. It is in 12-point Times Roman, with perfect one-inch margins around all sides. I should probably warn you in advance that this letter will paralyze you with […]

Jenny Foss
Jenny Foss operates a Portland, OR based recruiting firm, Ladder Recruiting Group, and is creator of the blog JobJenny.com. Jenny is also the author of the just-launched Ridiculously Awesome Resume Kit and the strategic job search ebook, To Whom It May Concern: Or, How to Stop Sucking at Your Job Search .
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Bonus Episode: How to Ignite Your Professional Bio with a Killer First Sentence, with Mike Russell

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Mike Russell, owner of Pivotal Writing, shares how to hook your readers attention with that first sentence of your professional bio.  We all know Portland loves quirky, colorful personalities, from “Keep Portland Weird” to “Keep Portland Beered” to “Keep Portland Bearded”.  Hiring managers are no different.  Whether it’s your bio statement on your website or […]

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Ep. 038: How to Write a Killer Cover Letter, with Susan Rich

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  Google the words “cover letter” and you will find lots of opinions on the best tactics: which format to use, the right salutations, and to whom you should address your letter. Our guest expert this week, Susan Rich, author of How to Write a Kick-Butt Resume Cover Letter, says people are missing the most […]

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How to Ace Your Job Application

Posted on by Ben Forstag

To get the job you want, you need to craft a stand-out application. This can take significant time and effort.  Following the guidelines below will undoubtedly slow the pace at which you can apply for open positions, but what you lose in quantity, will be more than made up for with quality. Here are the […]

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Ben Forstag
Managing Director at Mac's List
Ben Forstag is Managing Director of Mac’s List, where he is responsible for the organization's editorial and business operations. Ben has an extensive background in communications and marketing, primarily in the nonprofit and healthcare sector. Contact Ben at ben@macslist.org.
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Presenting Your Personal Brand in 30 Seconds

Posted on by Brad Lebowsky

Most employers are looking to hire based on more than just their background—they want a good culture fit. So it is essential to put your personal brand on display to engage them. A personal mission statement on your resume can serve as an effective way to communicate your personal brand to a potential employer at […]

Brad Lebowsky
My personal mission statement is to develop the strengths of others and create strategic plans in order to improve a social condition involving underserved communities, higher education, and health. As a hiring manager for over 25 years, I have hired more than 4,000 people and have uncovered specific strategies that have helped people secure meaningful employment both in wage and engagement.
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Avoid These Common Cover Letter Catastrophes | Job Seeker Roundup

Posted on by Cecilia Bianco

Every other Friday, in addition to the latest Oregon employment news, we share the best and most important articles to help you in your job search. We hope these stories inspire you, improve your job search, and help you understand what employers are looking for in job candidates. Enjoy! Avoid these common cover letter catastrophes.

Cecilia Bianco
Former Community Manager at Mac's List
Cecilia, former Community Manager at Mac's List, is a strategic communications professional with deep knowledge of the local job market and how to launch your career in Portland. She has a passion for web-writing, wine, and the Pacific NW.
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What it Takes to Write a Great Cover Letter

Posted on by Ben Forstag

One of the biggest mistakes a job hunter can make is to undervalue the importance of writing a great cover letter. Cover letters aren’t meaningless etiquette–mere gift wrapping on your resume or the cover on a TPS report; rather, they are a crucial tool for showcasing your skills, competency, writing ability, and dedication to the prospective job. […]

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Ben Forstag
Managing Director at Mac's List
Ben Forstag is Managing Director of Mac’s List, where he is responsible for the organization's editorial and business operations. Ben has an extensive background in communications and marketing, primarily in the nonprofit and healthcare sector. Contact Ben at ben@macslist.org.
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Is Your Brain Working Against You? Job Seeker Roundup

Posted on by Cecilia Bianco

Every other Friday, in addition to the latest Oregon employment news, we share the best and most important articles to help job seekers like you in your job search. We hope these stories inspire you, improve your job search, and help you understand what employers are looking for in job candidates. Enjoy! Are you ready for curveball […]

Cecilia Bianco
Former Community Manager at Mac's List
Cecilia, former Community Manager at Mac's List, is a strategic communications professional with deep knowledge of the local job market and how to launch your career in Portland. She has a passion for web-writing, wine, and the Pacific NW.
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How to Go From Super to SUPERSTAR in Your Portland Job Search

Posted on by Jessica Williams

Network, network and network some more! The end. Just kidding!

Jessica Williams
Jessica is a former account director for Mac's List and Prichard. In her spare time, Jessica can be caught hiking with her dog Zoey, traveling to foreign lands or practicing yoga.
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13 Reasons Why You Aren’t Getting Job Interviews

Posted on by Jessica Williams

You can blame me, the full moon, or the economy as reasons for not getting job interviews, but the truth is that you probably made one of the following errors. Yes, some things are out of your control, but these are things YOU CAN control in your job hunt. Make sure you don’t make these […]

Jessica Williams
Jessica is a former account director for Mac's List and Prichard. In her spare time, Jessica can be caught hiking with her dog Zoey, traveling to foreign lands or practicing yoga.
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How to Write an Authentic Cover Letter

Posted on by Jessica Williams

    This week I came across the cover letter that I sent Mac Prichard in 2012 when I applied for my job at Prichard Communications as manager of “Mac’s List.” Here it is verbatim:

Jessica Williams
Jessica is a former account director for Mac's List and Prichard. In her spare time, Jessica can be caught hiking with her dog Zoey, traveling to foreign lands or practicing yoga.
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14 Ways to Find a Job You Love in Oregon

Posted on by Jessica Williams

Valentine’s Day is here again and whether you’re looking for a job or just the next best opportunity, here are 14 ways to find a job you love: 1. Know Yourself Finding a job you love starts with knowing yourself. Assess your strengths, know your allies, and examine the activities that give you the greatest […]

Jessica Williams
Jessica is a former account director for Mac's List and Prichard. In her spare time, Jessica can be caught hiking with her dog Zoey, traveling to foreign lands or practicing yoga.
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Entry-Level Job Seekers: Brand Yourself to Stand Out

Posted on by Cecilia Bianco

With limited experience and a strong desire to be hired, it is important for entry-level job seekers to find ways to stand out. After browsing through the many applications Prichard Communications received for a recent job opening, I found a common eye-catching thread that set certain applicants apart from the rest: a clear personal brand. […]

Cecilia Bianco
Former Community Manager at Mac's List
Cecilia, former Community Manager at Mac's List, is a strategic communications professional with deep knowledge of the local job market and how to launch your career in Portland. She has a passion for web-writing, wine, and the Pacific NW.
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Embrace the Cover Letter

Posted on by Aubrie De Clerck

Oh, the cover letter. Often cursed, often agonized over. Many people sigh, “What’s the point? No one reads them anyway.” I am here to not only defend this job search staple, but to invite you to embrace it as well. Here’s why: 1. People in charge of hiring do read cover letters. I hear from countless recruiters and […]

Aubrie De Clerck
Aubrie De Clerck is a career coach with over 8 years experience in corporate, non-profit and education environments. She is known for being highly inspirational and deeply practical, with a passion for helping people of all ages and industries get the most out of their work life. Visit her website www.coachingforclarity.net.
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How to Write a Professional Cover Letter

Posted on by Jessica Williams

As many of you know, we are hiring a junior account executive here at Prichard Communications (publisher of “Mac’s List”). My colleague Jennie Day-Burget and I are the hiring managers for this position so I am watching each application that comes in. The first thing I’ve noticed is that the cover letters range from great […]

Jessica Williams
Jessica is a former account director for Mac's List and Prichard. In her spare time, Jessica can be caught hiking with her dog Zoey, traveling to foreign lands or practicing yoga.
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Avoid These Six Job Application Mistakes

Posted on by Mac Prichard

Sometimes landing a new job is a matter of luck. You don’t know who might tell you about an unadvertised opening or how you will hit it off with a potential employer in an interview. What you can control is how you apply for a job. My colleagues and I at Prichard Communications have hired […]

Mac Prichard
Mac Prichard publishes Mac's List and owns and operates Prichard Communications, a public relations agency that serves non-profits, public agencies, and foundations across the United States. He also blogs regularly about job-hunting in Portland.
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4 Ways to Cure the Portland Job Search Blues

Posted on by Jessica Williams

Readers always tell me that “Mac’s List” gives them hope about finding work in Portland. But with so many people competing, I know it isn’t easy to land a job here. This week I’ve had at least 10 conversations with people looking for work in Portland and I hear you – you’re frustrated and exhausted. […]

Jessica Williams
Jessica is a former account director for Mac's List and Prichard. In her spare time, Jessica can be caught hiking with her dog Zoey, traveling to foreign lands or practicing yoga.
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How Tapping Your Passion Can Get You the Job

Posted on by Jessica Williams

With employers hiring for personality fit as much as for your skill set job seekers today need to show they not only can get the work done, but also fit the culture of an organization. What’s the best way to do this? Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook may have the answer. At a Portland luncheon this […]

Jessica Williams
Jessica is a former account director for Mac's List and Prichard. In her spare time, Jessica can be caught hiking with her dog Zoey, traveling to foreign lands or practicing yoga.
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I Didn’t Come Here to Mess Around: Your “I Mean Business” Checklist for Portland Job Searching

Posted on by Jen Violi

Spring 2006. New Orleans, LA. Out in the sunshine, savoring a last bite of crawfish strudel and sipping a frozen café au lait from Café du Monde. In between bands at Jazz Fest with two of my favorite people, Bill and AC. And not just because they led me to the strudel. I compliment Bill’s […]

Jen Violi
Jen Violi is the author of Putting Makeup on Dead People, a finalist for the 2012 Oregon Book Awards. She also wrangles manuscripts and mentors writers, helping them to bring forth the books they were meant to write. Although Jen was born in Pennsylvania, she’s always had a little west coast in her soul, now content amidst the green and caffeine of Portland, OR. One of her superpowers is making dipping sauces. Find out more at www.jenvioli.com.
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Resume This, Cover Letter That! Even in the Interview, Remember It’s Not About You!

Posted on by Jessica Williams

Functional or chronological? Bullets or sentences? White space or not? Everyone has a different opinion about the right tactics for resumes, cover letters and job interviews. How do you sort out the conflicting advice? The best approach  depends on your work experience, your field, and the job description. In the end, however, what matters most […]

Jessica Williams
Jessica is a former account director for Mac's List and Prichard. In her spare time, Jessica can be caught hiking with her dog Zoey, traveling to foreign lands or practicing yoga.
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