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The Ultimate Guide to Writing a Great Letter of Recommendation

Updated Dec 12, 2022

What qualities should you highlight in your letter of recommendation?

Regarding letters of recommendation, the most significant aspect to highlight is a candidate’s future potential. While past work experience and qualifications are important, they can be listed on a resume. Instead of focusing on these, highlight qualities that show how the individual will continue to grow as a professional and how they will continue to grow with your company.

How detailed should your letter of recommendation be?

You should always be honest when writing a recommendation for a former employee. Be as detailed as possible, allowing the reader to grasp the candidate’s strengths and weaknesses. Avoid leaving any information out, even if it may seem negative. While you don’t want to be overly critical, you don’t want to put too much sugar on their skill set or potential.

How can you ensure the letter of recommendation is tailored to the candidate?

When a letter of recommendation is tailored to the candidate, it shows that the individual writing the letter knows a lot about the person they’re writing about. If the letter doesn’t match up, it could raise questions about the validity of the person writing it.

How should you address any potential weaknesses in the individual’s qualifications?

The writer should always look at weaknesses as opportunities to learn and grow. It is easy to focus on what someone isn’t capable of, but it is far more beneficial to see what they can become with the right guidance. The writer should always focus on the candidate’s potential, not the qualifications they already have.

How can you make the letter of recommendation stand out?

Ensure there are no spelling or grammar errors. Otherwise, it can make the recipient question your professionalism. If you have any concerns about the letter, ask a friend or family member to read over it.

How should you close the letter of recommendation?

You want to leave a strong impression to make your letter stand out from the rest when concluding your letter of recommendation. You can leave a powerful closing paragraph by conveying confidence in the candidate’s abilities and using strong, specific language that makes your letter of recommendation memorable.

What should you avoid when writing a letter of recommendation?

It is good to avoid becoming too over-enthusiastic when writing. Trying to impress the recipient with your words can be very tempting, but it can also look a little odd if you gush about the candidate. It can also come across as insincere if you are trying to be overly dramatic, so it is best to keep your language professional and matter-of-fact.

Who should you ask to write your letter of recommendation?

The best recommendation letters come from people who know the applicant well and can provide specific examples of their professional accomplishments. So, if a company is hiring, it should seek people who can write meaningful recommendations that illustrate the applicant’s skills and abilities.

How can you ensure the letter of recommendation is clear and professional?

The recommender’s goal is to help the candidate get a desired position. They may or may not have a deeper connection with the candidate than others, but their job is not to highlight a personal connection with you. It’s to highlight the candidate’s skills and qualifications. This is why you must ensure the candidate’s reference letter is clear and professional.

The writer can ensure the letter of recommendation is clear and professional by avoiding the use of informal language or jargon and by avoiding grammar and spelling mistakes. Avoiding jokes, writing in a formal tone, and keeping concise sentences will also ensure the letter is clear and professional.

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