Why Cover Letters Are Like Male Nipples

by Rich DeMatteo on January 24, 2011 · 31 comments

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I was recently told that I have an infected wisdom tooth.  That was part one of COTJ hears poopy sandwich news.  Part two is that my tooth and his three idiot counterparts will be extracted on February 1st, 2011.

Why is this happening to me at the tender age of 27 and 1/2?  Why do human beings need wisdom teeth at all?  Don’t answer, just listen to my story for now.

So, here I am sitting on the dental examination chair, with my mouth stretched open way too far, and the Dr. talking Doctor-ish about the needed procedure, anesthesia, and my health insurance.  While he’s talking about the difference between impacted and non-impacted teeth, my mind drifts into deep thought about our species’  useless parts, like tonsils, the appendix, wisdom teeth, pinky toes (would you miss them?), and dude nipples.  At some point in this deep dream of misfit body parts, I shook my Doctors hand, scheduled an appointment for surgery, and drove home, still angry and thinking about why we have useless parts.

3 Reasons Why Cover Letters Are Like Male Nipples

Naturally, the job search dweeb in me started thinking about how nipples (I’m really caught up on this) and cover letters should meet up.  Not everyone will agree with me, but here’s my logic:

1. Very few people notice them

I’ve never heard a girl say, “That guy has great nips”.   There has to be some nipple girls out there, but most women like arms, face, humor, personality, etc.  Maybe dudes with nipple rings(why?) or really large and creative nipples draw a crowd, but it’s rare for male nipples to be the center of attention.

The same can be said for cover letters.  Most recruiters will tell you that they don’t read cover letters (unless a requirement), and that they go straight to the resume.  They may check out the cover letter if something seems interesting about the candidate, but the resume is what they spend their time on initially.

Lesson learned: Your cover letter needs a nipple ring.  Do something to bring attention to it or trick the recruiter into reading it.  One trick that works for email submissions is writing your cover letter in the body of the email, or throw a teaser in the body and direct them to the cover letter to read more.

2. You look weird without them

I apologize to shark attack victims, but a body without nipples must be odd looking.  I know that mine are useless, but they’re staying put.  Nipples are just expected to be there, it’s odd to think of them gone.

And again, the same can be said about cover letters.  Maybe no one will open them, but not having cover letters is just weird.  If you told a recruiter that you didn’t have a cover letter, they probably won’t take you seriously.  Kind of like how you won’t take me seriously if my nipples fell off one day.

Lesson learned: Always be ready to flash your cover letter.  Have it on hand, and tweak it up to fit the company and position you’ve applied for.

3. You might not need them

Men, you really don’t need them.  As weird as we might look without them, we may evolve one day to be nipple free.  Maybe you use them for something creative like nipple painting or something, but for most of us they just sit there.

The level of importance of a cover letter depends on the person.  Someone with strong network connections and social media presence might not need the cover letter as much as someone else.  However, folks in Marketing Communications might be constantly asked to provide them.

Lesson learned: Some people will stroll through life never needing a cover letter.  That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have one, so make sure it looks lovely and be ready to send out when needed.

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30 comments
Emily Miethner
Emily Miethner

Hey Matt, The first thing I do in my hiring process (though I'm not a recruiter, I hire internally for my full-time job) is look at the cover letter. If it doesn't mention our company name or something that specifically addresses a part of the position they are applying for, I don't even look at the resume. Trash. Cover letters are a crucial way of showing the employer why you'd be a great fit for the company and position. If you can't demonstrate that in a couple of short paragraphs, it's not likely you'll be considered beyond that. In this job market companies want to know you're really interested in their job, not just any job. Definitely appreciate you're ability to combine nipples and cover letters in the same article, though.

Pro Blogger News
Pro Blogger News

Hi rich, your "check out cover letter template to have effective effect you may be probably positive that everything you need to get a position is really a cautiously created curriculum vitae with the attractive things about you you are very likely thinking that the job application letter is simply a thing that highlights you to the employer and most people submits it merely out of formality but you re dead mistaken the resume cover letter literally does indeed much more than introduce you to the company it actually convinces the hiring manager whether or not your resume is worth a shot if you do negatively on your employment cover letter because you didn t seriously improve it for a long period then your job application without doubt often be thrown away immediately" post is really one particular of the most beneficial substance that :-bd. Glad to meet you... Thanks... :D

Brett
Brett

Wow, if ever there was a headline that caught my attention.... For all of the dry talk out there about cover letters, resume, and job search, this made it both fun AND informative. More of this type of writing needs to happen in the career management and job search arena. Way to just go for it, Rich! Look forward to more :)

B.
B.

Love the analogy! I've always included my cover letter in the e-mail with the cover letter attached as a PDF. My last employer told me that it was my cover letter that really drew attention, versus my resume. Especially as someone who is changing fields, including the cover letter in the e-mail is my best bet when applying to a company where I don't have any connections.

Chris Ponder II
Chris Ponder II

Hey Rich, Great article and great perspective in relating dude nipples to cover letters. Never would have related the two....definitely ingenious! Chris

Terri Kleinman
Terri Kleinman

Great article and fun to read. Like your style! Very entertaining and true. Thanks for the laugh today!

Jenny Foss
Jenny Foss

What are you drinking, and where might I obtain some? :) Holy cow... ! What an analogy! Now, I disagree to the extent that I think that a KILLER (as in, I'll estimate only 4% of the cover letters on this earth fall into this category) cover letter, directed to the CORRECT (read: direct) contact? Can be a huge advantage. And, I'm not sure about killer man nipples. Whether or not they'd derive any distinct competitive advantage....? But this is fun funny stuff, Corn! Cheers, JobJenny

S.A.A
S.A.A

Written brilliantly! Feelings are mutual here about nipples and cover letters just didn't ever express myself though and definitely not the way you have! Great way to express it though! Got some brain fluids flowing here...hmmm so how should I make my cover letter get attention?

Steve Levy
Steve Levy

Can't wait for your missive on "Pubic Hair and Objectives of Resumes"

Yanique
Yanique

This is awesome! I too was very curious where this was going... Great job as always Rich.

Ed Han
Ed Han

You know, I wasn't really sure where this blog entry was headed on the subject but had a lot of fun reading!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Pro Blogger News - do you have a name? Sorry, but we'll have to agree to disagree. Ask 100 recruiters, probably 15 will tell you that they actually read them. Cover Letters don't prove anything. For creative positions they can be important, but really, they are just words on paper and unless they provide MEASURABLE information, then it can all be made up. This is obviously the same as resume. If a resume doesn't include measurable, quantifiable data, then it doesn't help the candidate either. Thanks.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Laura - thanks so much! You're the best ever!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Brett - Your comment made me smile, and I appreciate the kind words. Thanks so much! My style doesn't even know how to spell dry! Thanks, and hope to see you back soon!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey B - thanks so much! I think it's great that your cover letter helped you, that's fantastic! Thanks for this comment!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Chris - Thanks for your comment and nice word!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Terri - thanks for the comment! Glad I could make you laugh!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hi Jenny - I don't disagree with you there. The battle is getting someone to read it, not writing the amazing cover letter!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hiya SAA - Thanks for your thoughts and comments! I think the best way is to include it in the body of the email. 2-3 paragraphs. Short and sweet!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Steve - Yes, I'm sure you'll have your head on a swivel looking for that post...

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Ed - Glad you enjoyed. Trust me, I never know where I'm headed...

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Thanks, Jess! I wasn't sure if I was out of my mind when writing it...but I'm pretty sure I am!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Oh - and you can find the juice I'm drinking in PA. Come to Philly and I'll provide the drank!