Bad Resume Words
We have the red sharpie on standby! We’re entirely too acquainted with the poorly written resume – largely due to the word choice of the writer. Whether you’re a recent graduate or executive, as a professional, there are certain words you shouldn’t be using when writing your resume. Simply stated, your resume can go from average to bad just because of these words.
As professional resume writers with a great deal of experience in every kind of resume, our team at Employment BOOST can quickly tell your of which words you should not be using on your resume. If you want a job or just want to appear professional, writing your resume will be much simpler after reading our “Ultimate Collection of Resume Mistakes.” For now, take the time to read about these bad resume words, why you shouldn’t use them, and how you can improve your content.
Bad Resume Words To Rework
The Resume Problem: Anyone can be self-motivated. What happens when you’re not motivated?
“The Career Effect” as told by Professional Resume Writing Experts: You’re trying to describe your leadership and management skills. You don’t need someone patting you on the back constantly applauding you or cheering you on in order for you to get your tasks completed. Express your great leadership skills by utilizing quantitative information after other stronger action verbs such as “directed,” “spearheaded,” or “implemented.”
The Resume Problem: What is the scale of “good”?
“The Career Effect” as told by Professional Resume Writing Experts: Use stronger adjectives than good. Never refer to your performance as “good.” Support what “good” you did by elaborating on the task and any other metrics involved in your ‘goodness.’
- Turned around
The Resume Problem: Suddenly your resume reminds us of Dance, Dance Revolution.
“The Career Effect” as told by Professional Resume Writing Experts: What was it that you “turned around”? Elaborate on how you transformed/innovated/improved your company, your department, your team, or even yourself. The more relative, quantitative information and keywords that follow your strong action verb, the better.
Side Note: This phrase is common for consultants in turn around situations and those doing performance improvement, in these cases naturally it makes sense to use this phrase. For other types of resumes, there are better words to articulate your point.
The Resume Problem: You worked at work?
“The Career Effect” as told by Professional Resume Writing Experts: Basically any word is better than “worked” on your resume. Did you build a plane or did you input numbers into a spreadsheet? Clarify your title and professional experience by using more relevant words that are descriptive of the type of work you did.
The Resume Problem: You get things done.
“The Career Effect” as told by Professional Resume Writing Experts: Replace “did” and “finished” with better descriptive words that are more descriptive of the work you accomplished. “Accomplished” and “achieved” are stronger word choices. Go the next step by elaborating on how you accomplished and how well you achieved something.
- Personal characteristics: funny/serious/passionate/nice
The Resume Problem: You’re funny, sweet, cute, and stylish – why wouldn’t anyone want to hire you?
“The Career Effect” as told by Professional Resume Writing Experts: Remain objective with your content to allow the recruiter to focus on the facts. Avoid too much personal information as it can be more distracting and allow for prejudice. Remember that your resume is a reflection of your professional brand.
Bad Resume Words Summary
- Good: Use quantifiable data to clarify how “good” your work is or was.
- Turned Around: Use transformed/innovated/improved instead.
- Worked: Use industry buzzwords reflective of the hospitality industry. Expand on your customer service skills.
- Did/finished: Include any relevant trainings, language skills, education or certifications that pertain to your professional brand.
- Personal characteristics: Stick to the objective information and avoid too much personal information.
Thank you for taking the time to read Employment BOOST’s “Bad Resume Words.” While we are confident in our expertise as experienced executive resume writers and have knowledge from exceptionally qualified career consultants and a global executive search firm, we understand that these bad resume words could vary and may not apply to everyone and should be considered on a case-by-case basis. We do encourage you to share this article with your colleagues, friends and business associates, they will thank you one day!