If you haven't already, you'll reach a point in your job search where you think your head will explode if you have to face one more cycle of applying, interviewing, and getting rejected. That's when you need to remind yourself of the immortal line from the movie Risky Business: "Sometimes you just gotta say what the f---" (that's "WTF" for all you texters who weren't even born when that movie came out in 1983.) Once you've embraced that new attitude, you need to sit down and write a WTF cover letter.
A WTF cover letter is unfiltered and honest. It tells it like it is. It bends the rules, skips the formalities, and doesn't fear the consequences. And it feels really, really good to write one.
Here's the difference between a standard cover letter and a WTF cover letter:
STANDARD Cover Letter
Dear Ms. Jefferson:
I am very interested in the Sr. Account Manager opportunity with Jefferson and Partners. As you will see on my resume, I have seven years of account management experience with Franklin Brothers. I believe the skills and achievements I attained in that role, especially my record of being the top account manager in 11 of the past 12 months, will make me an asset to your business..."
WTF Cover Letter
Dear Ms. Jefferson:
For seven years I kept your photo on my dartboard. I was an account manager for your main competitor, Franklin Brothers, and your agency was the enemy. I spent hundreds of hours researching your strategies in order to stay one step ahead. All that effort made me Franklin Brothers' top account manager for most of last year. Unfortunately, you still beat us badly and Franklin Brothers went under. And now I have all this in-depth knowledge of your company and nowhere to use it. So, how about an interview?
Should you actually send a WTF cover letter to an employer? It depends on your personality and your industry. If you're applying to, say, a law firm or a funeral home you might want to tone it down. In the end, trust your gut. (But don't forget: "Sometimes you just gotta say … ")
Maybe your impassioned, over-the-top cover letter will stand out so much that the employer can't wait to meet you. Or, maybe it'll wind up on their office bulletin board as an object of ridicule. Either way, you'll feel better just getting all that off your chest.
What do you think? Is a WTF cover letter a good idea or a bad idea for a serious job seeker? Post a comment below to share your thoughts or experiences.
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