1. You address someone as “Dear Sir or Madam."
The hiring manager has a name, and it's on you to find out what it is. Addressing the letter to a specific hiring manager shows them that you've done your research and are detail oriented where it counts.
The Fix: If you can’t find the person’s name with a search or by browsing the website, give the company a call and ask who the hiring manager is for the position you’re applying for.
2. You're playing defense, not offense.
3. You're using the same cover letter for every opening.
4. It’s basically your résumé’s replica.
5. You're not matching the company's culture.
6. You're focusing on your training vs. your experience.
7. You're not addressing points made in the job description.
8. It’s a two-pager.
Consider how many cover letters the hiring manager is reading a day... Do you think their initial emotion will be eagerness if they see your cover letter had to be stapled?
The Fix: Devote time to the art of editing and simplifying; think of your cover letter as an acting reel, highlighting the best parts of your career as it pertains to this position!