Skip Nav

Have You Ever Written a Gimmicky Cover Letter?

The economy may be nearing its bottom, but the job market isn’t getting any less competitive just yet. A friend who was recently laid off told me, "I wish I could attach a big flashing sign to my application that says, 'I’m competent, I promise! Please bring me in for an interview.'"

We’ve talked about how some job-seekers are doing almost exactly that, and a recent article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette details how applicants are getting creative with their cover letters in particular — but not in a good way. In the article, Max Messmer, author of Job Hunting For Dummies, shares several cover letters whose authors felt that self-deprecation was the key to scoring an interview. My favorite: "I don't know what skills I could offer you or your company." Yikes!

Obviously the job-seekers featured in the article got it wrong, but unconventional cover letters are always a gamble. Some employers love them, and some toss them immediately. Have you ever taken an unorthodox approach to a cover letter? And if so, did it get you the job, or at least an interview?


Latest Smart Living
Award season continues with the SAG Awards! Check out our event coverage!