A letter of recommendation, as the name suggests, is a written or typed document that the writer uses to evaluate the characteristics, skills and potentials of the individual being recommended. Usually, this recommendation is made in terms of that person’s capability to carry out a certain activity or duty. So, why do we need a letter of recommendation? Well, letters of recommendation are written to seek employment, admission to colleges and universities.
Also, a letter of recommendation should not sound preachy but genuine. Therefore, listed below are 5 ways that you can incorporate in order to write a balanced letter of recommendation:
The most important part of any written document is its structure. A well-structured letter of recommendation makes it easier for the reviewer to understand the referred person better and know what his/her capabilities are. The letter body and letter closing are two essential aspects of the structure that you cannot simply ignore when writing an LOR.
You cannot write an LOR without having adequate as well as reliable information about the person being referred. As we already discussed that the letter of recommendation comprises of the recommended individual’s characteristics, skills and potentials, the writer must have complete information about the same.
It is necessary to mention the special skills of the referred in the letter of recommendation so that the reviewer has relevant reasons to provide the referred with employment or admission, whichever has been applied for. However, the writer should sound reasonable when mentioning the skills. Any kind of exaggeration in that matter might not help. Also, being specific about the person’s qualifications is a must.
Comparisons help highlight a candidate’s achievements. Thus, you can make comparisons in the letter of recommendation thereby helping the recipient understand the reason behind you recommending a person. These comparisons could be made on the basis of the candidate’s achievements within a particular period which is otherwise a not so easy task. Time can be used as the deciding factor. For example, a certain group of individuals completes a certain task within a specific period, but the referred individual completes it much more quickly and efficiently.
Incorporating the referred individual’s achievements in the letter of recommendation is what makes the most impact. These achievements can be categorized into:
- Previous academic performance
- Expertise at following protocol
- Team work abilities
- Independent abilities
- Enthusiasm, dependability, honesty
- Honours and awards
Including all the above points in your letter of recommendation will help you churn out a balanced and effective LOR.