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#112161 - 09/15/03 09:54 AM Dear Sir
vika Offline
member

Registered: 06/20/02
Posts: 161
Loc: Aberdeen, Scotland
How many letters today start with Dear Sir or Madam?

well, at least letters that I write, I am afraid. the question how to start a letter if you know that there will be a person (a secretary, an officer, a scientist) who will open it but you don't know his/her name. we were taught this "Dear Sir/Madam" formula, which I know is awfully formal but would "to whom it may concern" be better?


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#112162 - 09/15/03 10:01 AM Re: Dear Sir
AnnaStrophic Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 6511
Loc: lower upstate New York
I get around that by writing "Greetings." But that's just me....


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#112163 - 09/15/03 10:12 AM Re: Greetings
Faldage Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/01/00
Posts: 13803
Greetings was the standard opening to a WWII draft notice. Family lore has it that my grandmother always wondered what they were weeping about.

Greet was Scots for weep


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#112164 - 09/17/03 05:50 PM Re: Greetings
belMarduk Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/28/00
Posts: 2891
This may sound a little anal but, if I'm sending a letter, I always get the name of the person I need to send it to.

It is extremely easy for the recipient of a letter to throw it away when it is addressed to Sir or Madame difficult if it starts, Dear Mr. Burns.


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#112165 - 09/18/03 08:51 AM Re: Greetings
vika Offline
member

Registered: 06/20/02
Posts: 161
Loc: Aberdeen, Scotland
but if an ad says "send your CV to Human Personel Department"? where do I get the name of the officer who happens to open my letter?


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#112166 - 09/18/03 08:55 AM Re: Greetings
AnnaStrophic Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 6511
Loc: lower upstate New York
In that case, I would still go with "greetings."


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#112167 - 09/18/03 09:26 AM Re: Greetings
Jackie Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 11610
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
but if an ad says "send your CV to Human Personel Department"? where do I get the name of the officer who happens to open my letter?
Well, you could call the company and ask. Failing that, I'd put Dear Sir or Madam. Or Dear Madam or Sir. But I'm old-fashioned; there's always "Yo!".


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#112168 - 09/18/03 10:18 AM Re: Greetings
vika Offline
member

Registered: 06/20/02
Posts: 161
Loc: Aberdeen, Scotland
greetings it is then. but I'm surprised that everybody uses the same form of address...


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#112169 - 09/18/03 12:03 PM Re: Greetings
vanguard Offline
journeyman

Registered: 12/09/02
Posts: 87
Loc: Ohio
OK, here's from someone who occasionally works in the mail room at my place of employment. First of all, the envelope generally gets tossed. The HR person is not an officer, and she may or may not look at a CV or resume right away - it is given to a secretary and filed somewhere unless there is an active search for new personnel at that time.
I also play receptionist for a short time each day, and when we get questions about HR we tell the name of the correct person - spell it - give the address - whatever it takes. My guess is that the HR person likes being addressed by her name better that Sir/Madam, but if the CV looked good it probably wouldn't matter too much. But, that's one job I don't get to do - they NEVER ask me about hiring or firing (and I have big opinions about it, too!).

_________________________
What sane person could live in this world and not be crazy? -Ursula K. Le Guin, author (1929- )

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#112170 - 09/18/03 12:22 PM Re: Greetings
Jackie Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 11610
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
I have big opinions about it, too!).
Overlooking their hidden treasure, are they?



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