'To Whom It May Concern' screams that you didn't do your homework.
Our experience as a manager tells us that Squawkfox is right: If you're not getting called for a job interview, it's likely your cover letter laid an egg on some honcho's desk.
What's wrong with your letter? You might find some clues in a post by Kerry Taylor, the "Fox" at Squawkfox, called "6 things that make your cover letter suck." It's part of a series of posts on the topic, including "Anatomy of a killer cover letter." A companion series addresses resume writing, including the memorable "6 words that make your resume suck."
Kerry blessedly demonstrates that a topic that seems oppressive -- don't we all HATE these chores? -- can be fun. OK, maybe that's a stretch, but her posts are informative and entertaining.
Among Kerry's cover letter tips:
Food, clothing and travel merchants offer deals.
Clothing, accessories, and travel
He says they're out of touch on issues like health care.
"Brainy Smurf" has called out fellow members of Gen Y for expecting everything to be handed to them. And now he's criticizing seniors for being focused on "me, me, me."
Many seniors' stands on recent issues also indicate they're out of touch with current economic realities, he claims in a post called "3 misguided senior perspectives from a 30-something" at Pants in a Can.
Basically, he says, seniors have had it pretty good compared with the lives of young working people.
His three observations:
Blogger details frustrations she's encountered as she tries to save her home.
For the record, I’ve all but given up trying to get my mortgage modified after a job loss at the end of March.
My family is a perfect example of the type of family I would have thought would be a shoe-in for a modification -- we were fine when I was working, making our payments without any trouble, darn near perfect credit, just about as regular as a family can be.
The modification program was pretty straightforward, but I’ve read too much online, talked to friends, and have my own experiences, and I’m here to tell you that the bottom line is that the banks that are receiving this government money do not want to talk to you. They would rather wait until you go into foreclosure, figuring you will do whatever it takes -- take on more debt, raid your retirement account, borrow from family -- to make your payments if you can, and that means they’re still getting paid.
It's no big deal. We'll still eat junk food but maybe we'll cut back a bit.
Should there be a "fat tax" on junk food?
Well, that's just my humble opinion, but I really don't see why this has so many people throwing their arms up in the air with shock. We tax liquor and cigarettes, neither of which are essentials in life. Why not tax something that is bad for our health, preventing more people from buying it and generating much-needed tax revenue in the process?
- Bing: Soda tax pros and cons
Taxes on beer, spirits and cigarettes vary from state to state (there's a detailed list here) but one thing's for sure: When you grab a shot of your favorite tipple, you're giving money to Uncle Sam. Like most things in life, liquor should be taken in moderation. It's a treat. And, as such, we can stomach a little extra money being handed over for our shot of bourbon or pint of ale. (Cigarettes, well, they're a whole different animal, and if it weren't for the enormous amount of money they generate they would have been banned years ago. Such is the power of the mighty dollar.)
Similarly, fast food is (or should be) a rare treat, too.
40-page circular has a ton of doorbusters; toys are 50% off.
Bargain hunters may find a few items for their holiday shopping list in Kmart’s leaked Black Friday ad.
The 40-page circular hit online deal sites Monday with a huge number of Friday doorbusters and some Saturday-only deals. A few merit a mention:
Flying on off-peak days will save you money.
Baggage fees, booking fees, airfare sales –- and now travel surcharges for holiday periods. These days, you practically need an MBA to buy an airline ticket.
Which day you pick to travel could make a big difference in how much you pay. Because while we are seeing heavily discounted fares for some days near the holidays, flying other days carries a hefty surcharge, $20 each way.
Delta, Northwest, American and United have doubled the surcharge they've imposed for the busiest travel days around Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day, USA Today reports. The airlines began charging an extra $10 each way at the end of September for some peak travel days, and that charge has now been doubled, to $20 each way.
Joy about increased sales of boxers and briefs might have been premature.
Here's a headline from August we won't soon forget: "Manty sales are up! Is the end of the recession near?"
There was joy across the land when retailers reported a resurgence in men's underwear sales. Known as the underwear index and attributed to former Fed chair Alan Greenspan, the indicator is based on the theory that men stop replacing worn boxers and briefs when the economy is in trouble. When men start buying again, good times are near.
Thus the joy back in August. But, David Colman writes at New York Magazine's Intelligencer, there were two flaws in that thinking.
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ABOUT SMART SPENDING
Editor Bev O'Shea lives and works in the foothills of the Appalachians. A former copy editor for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the Orlando Sentinel, she joined MSN Money in 2007. She's a fan of sunsets, college football and free shipping, among other things.
Having worked as a writer, reporter and editor for more than 25 years, Editor Julie Tilsner is the sort of person who can't help but correct grammar in Facebook postings and on billboards. She's written for BusinessWeek, the Los Angeles Times, Parenting, Redbook, AOL and others. She lives in Los Angeles County with her family and loves to drink wine and practice yoga, although not generally at the same time.
A writer for MSN Money since January 2007, Donna Freedman won regional and national prizes during an 18-year newspaper career and earned a college degree in midlife without taking out student loans. She also writes about smart money tactics for magazines and on her own site, Surviving and Thriving.
Mitch Lipka has been warning people about scams and shining light on questionable business practices for more than 20 years. Mitch, the consumer columnist for The Boston Globe, has also been a reporter and editor at The Philadelphia Inquirer, Consumer Reports, South Florida Sun-Sentinel and AOL. He won the 2010 New York Press Club award for best consumer reporting online and was honored in 2011 for his reporting on child product safety.
Marilyn Lewis is an award-winning writer with a passion for getting readers clear, straight information that helps them stay out of financial trouble. A former reporter for The San Jose Mercury News, she works from her home in Port Townsend, Wash. Contact her at MarilynLewis@Outlook.com.
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Children from lower income families are at greater risk of suffering accidental injuries and being sickened by food, according to a Consumer Federation of America study.