A Great Cover Letter That Made Me Respond Immediately

I’ve blogged about this topic before on ERE and as a ghost writer on a former client’s blog (which caused something like a 1000% spike – albeit temporary – in the blog’s traffic). Given all the pablum-like advice on cover letters these days – folks, there’s something wrong when  a one-page resume is accompanied by a one-page cover letter – it is worth reposting this one specific letter in response to a Linus sysadmin opportunity…

I’ve been bouncing boxes for Uncle Sam 2.5 years now in some of the most god-awful places on earth. I’ve racked servers during indirect fire, maintained contact with a bird while our vehicle was shot up, mastered the finer art of the many uses of duct tape and how it applies to IT in a warzone.

I’ve put up racks in Namibian provinces while cheetahs and jackals watched me from 100 yards away, I’ve even chased an ostrich who tried to steal my CAT5 from the box. I’ve worked on military projects where the dotmil PM/leadership had a more difficult time making decisions than my wife. I’ve danced in the Red Zone with Iraqi locals after a support call to a Forward Operating Base.

I’ve mastered the chemistry of the ‘essential caffeine stack’ and I debunked the myth that if you untie your belly button, your butt will fall off (it won’t!). I’ve been shot at, shot up, blown up, broken and put back together again; from Baghdad to Namibia and from Sudan to Djibouti. I strongly feel that I have the skillset, experience and thick skin to take on the world of IT in the greatest city on earth.

This was so unique that I was dialing this person’s phone number the moment I finished reading. It was so compelling that I would have called him even if his resume experience and skills didn’t match the needs of the position.

Will your cover letter – keep in mind that most of us might not even read it unless your resume gives us a reason to do so – get my fingers to dial your number?

If you’re brave enough and want some feedback, post your cover letter here; I’m sure I won’t be the only person chiming in.


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