Kara Page reports:
“As manager or owner of a business, employees may turn to you for testimonials and references for new jobs or promotion opportunities. Although a testimonial is typically short, the amount of time it takes to craft a strong one can be considerable; in fact, employees may come to you with a testimonial drafted as a template for you to use. However, if you must write a testimonial, all you need to know is who the testimonial is about and who will be considering it…Draft a professional business letter, including a header with your contact information, a side address with the recipient's name, title and contact information[,] and an opening salutation that greets the recipient formally by name…For your employee, the most valuable part of your testimonial is not what you say but the fact that it comes from you and is backed by your professionalism. A handwritten or unprofessional appearance could tarnish the effect of your testimonial…Write an opening sentence and state the employee's name, [his] position and his dates of employment with [you] thus far. If appropriate, include his salary…Write a brief middle paragraph that expands upon your employee's most important duties and his performance. Include any special recognition your employee has received. Consider the purpose of the testimonial; if the employee is interested in a higher-level position, you may want to highlight his most impressive responsibilities and examples of leadership, while if he is changing careers, it would be more useful [to] mention some of his more transferable skills…Write a closing sentence that states your positive feelings regarding the employee and that you recommend him for the position he is interested in. If applicable, mention that the recipient may contact you for further information regarding the employee…Before writing the testimonial, answer a few questions about the employee to help generate ideas on what to include. Consider your perception of that employee when he was hired, how that perception may have changed and what you feel his biggest asset to the company is.”
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