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Executive cover letters dos and don’ts

When you are going for the top job at an organisation, it’s vital that your cover letter presents you as an expert candidate with a wealth of experience, confidence, and ambition. Unlike other roles or industry cover letters, yours will also need to promote your capacity as a resilient leader. Here are our top tips for nailing your next executive cover letter.  

Executive cover letters dos:

  • Do keep it short. One page is the maximum for cover letters, with the ideal length between 250 – 350 words, or around four paragraphs. 
  • Do address your cover letter to the correct member of staff. 
  • Do tailor or customise your executive cover letter for each role you apply for. 
  • Do take the most impressive parts of your resume to use throughout your cover letter. 
  • Do highlight the most influential and successful projects you have worked on. 
  • Do mention board memberships, elite organisation memberships, or prestigious accolades you have earned. 
  • Do show that you have done extensive research about the company or organisation you want to work for. 
  • Do end your cover letter by thanking the employer for their time. 

 Executive cover letters don’ts:

  • Do not use outdated or unprofessional contact details. Always use the most recent, most relevant, and most professional. 
  • Do not use your current company-specific language or terminology. Stick to what is known and understood at an industry level. 
  • Don’t simply copy or rewrite your CV in your executive cover letter. 
  • Don’t get bogged down in your past experience only. At this senior level, you should include your visions for the organisation or indicate how you can achieve something new.