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Your cover letter is one of the first impressions you make on an employer. How would you like that impression to be you are a self-absorbed know-it-all? And all of this can be determined by your use of the word “I." Most of us have probably heard the “Don't Overuse 'I' Rule," but do you know why you shouldn't. Keep reading to find out...

Rookie Mistake

This cover letter mistake is one that is commonly made by inexperienced job seekers. Of course if you are a recent college grad applying for your first jobs you may get a little caught up in the idea of getting your career started and not realize the message you are sending out. Although the job you are applying for may only be a stepping stone for your career, you cannot make an allusion to that in your cover letter and expect to get the job.

Team Of 'I'

An article on FastWeb.com warns the most important reason to steer clear of overusing “I" is to avoid coming across as self-centered or arrogant - especially if it's used at the beginning of the sentence. A good rule of thumb is to try to limit your use of “I" to only once. Try to reword sentences in such a way that they will have the right impact without needing the word at all.

Check Out My Stats

One assumption to be avoided by the overuse of “I" is you are more interested in what the company can do for you instead of vice versa. According to QuintCareers.com, this is a common mistake among recent grads and inexperienced job hunters. One feature of your cover letter is to let the employer know what attributes you can bring to the company you are applying for. They want to know how you being an employed for them will benefit the business. In some cases, overusing “I" on a cover letter can insinuate the opposite. Without knowing, you could give the impression of “this company needs me, don't you see my accomplishments?"

Pass The Ball

Another reason for not overusing “I" is so you won't come off as not being a team player. Employers need someone who is going to collaborate and work well with others. If you focus the cover letter on yourself too much, this may not be the image you are portraying. Remember, no one wants a ball hog. Use your cover letter to let the employer know from the very beginning you can play your part and pass the ball to others.
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