Curious Conundrums with Cover Letters
As someone who has been composing a fair amount of cover letters, especially as of late, I have discovered there are some curious challenges that arise with composing cover letters.
One challenge is the simple futility of the effort. It’s one thing to fill out applications, web forms, or any similar basic information for jobs that accompany sending out one’s résumé – all of which amount to a small amount of effort (in the full scope of things) – however, it’s another matter to compose an entirely new letter for each job. For each position to which one applies, that’s a whole document demanding composition – for some, that can be a breeze; for others, that can be quite a challenge, as some people may not be so adroit at writing. But, even for those who have a greater comfort in writing, this is a document that they hope can get them a chance at having a conversation about possibly landing a job, so there’s a lot riding on it, so making mistakes on it is to be carefully avoided, yet the document might also just be skimmed over.
Furthermore, another consideration is that this document is autobiographical and something into which the writer has poured their personal energies, as well as laying out their professionals skills, talents, and/or aspirations, so they ostensibly care about the contents of this carefully-composed document, yet it may only be seen/read by one person, at best – someone who may simply be quickly scanning it.
This is, at least to me, a peculiar frustration. Indeed, if I’m spending creative energy on something, I want people to know about it. (This is a large reason why I’ve never created an anonymous blog/website – I want people to know that it was my creative efforts that appear (the other reason: if I got found out as being behind whichever anonymous websites I were to create, I would be concerned about negative consequences).) For instance, I composed a couple of cover letters this morning for jobs to which I applied – is anyone going to read them? Perhaps a couple of people (at best). If I’m going to spend time and energy on writing something, I want people to recognize my efforts and to share it (e.g. this blog post).
So, basically, a curious conundrum is the lack of ROI on one’s efforts.
While I perhaps ought to spend some time looking up hints, tips, and other such good practices with cover letters, I have, fortunately, been getting used to the practice a bit. While I still need to work on my cover letter-writing, I am trying to worry less about this ROI issue.