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The average executive makes $104,980 per year according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Since it is such a lucrative and experienced role, a solid cover letter that conveys your skills in leadership, corporate strategy and budgeting is crucial to standing out from the competition. With Hloom’s library of executive cover letter samples and tips, you can learn how to craft a letter that helps you win the interview.
The most common sections you’ll see on a cover letter include:
Cover Letter Sections
At the top, include your name, city and state location, phone number and a professional email address. For example, in the above sample a professional email for Farrah might look like: Farrah.Palmer@example.com.
Address your cover letter to the hiring manager or recruiter by researching the company and position. This can usually be found on the company website or social media page, or you can contact the company directly and ask the receptionist. In this example, the letter is addressed to Mark Davidson.
In this section let the reader know which executive position you’re applying for and why you’re a good fit. Pick one or two of your strongest skills that you feel would be the most useful assets to the company. In the above example, notice how Farrah showcases her leadership and adeptness in corporate strategy to market herself as the right fit for the role.
The body of the cover letter provides an opportunity to pitch your qualifications for the job in greater detail. Select two or three specific events or accomplishments that make you stand out as an executive, and try to turn them into a narrative that will keep a hiring manager’s attention. In this example, you can see how Farrah discusses balancing long- and short-term holding strategies in order to maximize her previous company’s foothold of the dynamic technology market.
Finish your letter with a thank you or other expression of gratitude for the reader’s time and a promise to follow up. As you see above, Farrah informs the employer that she would be available to speak about the role at the hiring manager’s convenience.
The last step is to include an appropriate closing and your first and last name. “Best regards,” “Sincerely” and “Thank you” are all professional and to the point.
This template is perfect if you’re seeking a bold visual statement, and also demonstrates that you are as up-to-date as your potential employer.
With its striking fonts and vivid coloring, this cover letter template helps you make a strong impression with hiring managers.
For job seekers who want to show off strong qualifications and experience without distracting bells and whistles, this clean cover letter example fits the bill.
The classic cover letter template is a good choice for job candidates with minimal experience who want to project a professional image.
This sharp layout places emphasis on job experience and major achievements, highlighting your abilities as a top-level manager.
This cover letter example is easily adaptable across many professions, allowing you to detail your experience, leadership skills, and technical expertise.
This clean template emphasizes your progressive, up-to-date experience and achievements -- the qualities that pioneering, cutting-edge companies seek.
This solid template lets you get to the point with your credentials, and why you are a good fit for the job.
When you need to get all the important details about your capabilities across without wasting space, use this compact, well-organized template.
Choose action verbs in your cover letter to expand on what you’ve accomplished as an executive rather than repeating bullet points from your resume. Words like authorized, coordinated, implemented, directed and operated help make it easier for a hiring manager to envision your strengths and effectiveness within an organization. These types of words tend to jump off the page and get noticed more than “I did” or “I helped.”
Incorporate industry keywords into your application. Start by scanning and highlighting the job description for words and phrases related to the position. Combine strong action verbs and job-related keywords to personalize your cover letter to the executive job ad. Examples may include:
Implement: Implemented advanced product development with selected sales pipelines.
Coordinate: Coordinated holding strategies to maximize a foothold in dynamic industry markets.
Direct: Directed sales tactics to increase the company market share from 35 to 45 percent within two years.
Oversee: Oversaw sales associates, including hiring, training and potential firing.
Launch: Launched new campaigns and co-authored key elements of marketing copy and strategy.
Making sure that you have some of the right keywords from the job posting is a vital component of your cover letter. Due to the high volume of applications a hiring manager receives, some companies use applicant tracking systems (ATS) to eliminate as many as 50 percent of applicants. Words that relate to communication skills, teamwork and management abilities are important as well as those that show your ability to organize events.
The best way to make sure you include the right keywords in your letter is to study the exact language used in the job posting and make sure to include as many as the relevant keywords as you can. A good example of weaving keywords into your cover letter might look like:
“Implemented product development with guided sales funnels. Led to an increase in market share from 15 to 25 percent, and increased profit margins by a total of 45 percent.”Build a Cover Letter
A well-written executive cover letter provides a chance to strengthen your resume by highlighting the skills and accomplishments in positions of leadership, or in instances where you achieved results. Instead of regurgitating what your resume already states in bullet form, expand on key features that are likely to get you noticed and set you apart from other executives. Flesh out the blurbs from your resume that paint a picture of who you are as an executive.