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The terms you should NEVER use in your resume if you want to get the job

Revealed: the terms you should NEVER use in your resume if you want to get the job – from ‘people person’ to ‘team player’

  • An Australian career coach has revealed the words you shouldn’t use on a resume
  • Simon Bennett told Seek not to use a “motivated,” “loyal,” or “people person.”
  • “These words are overused and are rarely supported with examples,” Bennett said
  • Bennett said candidates should demonstrate how they embody capabilities

An Australian career coach and recruiting advisor has revealed the words and phrases to prevent them from being used in a resume for greater chance of success.

Simon Bennett, of Glide Outplacement and Career Coaching, said Search it is essential to avoid the inclusion of common ‘buzzwords’, including ‘punctual’, ‘motivated’, ‘loyal’, ‘energetic’, ‘team player’, ‘enthusiastic’, ‘customer focused’ and ‘a people person’.

“These words are often overused and rarely supported with concrete examples,” Bennett said.

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Simon Bennett, of Glide Outplacement and Career Coaching, told Seek it's essential to avoid the inclusion of common 'buzzwords'

Simon Bennett, of Glide Outplacement and Career Coaching, told Seek it’s essential to avoid the inclusion of common ‘buzzwords’

Carefully selecting the right formulation for a resume is crucial because it gives the employer confidence that you are the perfect person for the job and the company.

Bennett explained that job seekers often use these popular words to sound ‘competent’, but employers want to see how the candidate embodies these characteristics.

“Almost every employer will be looking for that [common] properties, but anyone can say they own them, “he said, which is why it’s important to provide examples alongside the property itself.

Carefully selecting the right formulation for a resume is crucial because it gives the employer confidence that you are the perfect person for the job and the company

Carefully selecting the right formulation for a resume is crucial because it gives the employer confidence that you are the perfect person for the job and the company

Carefully selecting the right formulation for a resume is crucial because it gives the employer confidence that you are the perfect person for the job and the company

The words you need to change on your resume

Replace these words:

  • Loyal
  • Energetic
  • Punctual
  • Motivated
  • Hardworking
  • Team player

With powerful action verbs such as:

  • Developed (eg “I have developed a new training manual”)
  • Achieved (eg “I achieved all my sales targets”)
  • Managed (eg “I led a team of three”)
  • Initiated (e.g. ‘I initiated a health and safety program’)

Source: Search

Instead of using the words themselves, replace them with a powerful action verb – such as avoiding ‘motivated’ and using ‘developed’ or ‘achieved’ instead, followed by an example.

“These kind of action verbs attract attention and excite the reader,” said Bennett.

“These words help to emphasize your skills and abilities and show the success you have achieved in previous jobs.”

Julian Williamson, director and founder of The Jobseeker Agency, supported this and said on Twitter: “Without supporting evidence to show that you have those characteristics, buzzwords are just words that many other people use and therefore have little value.”

You can demonstrate skills by explaining how long you have stayed with an organization, how you are ‘customer focused’, what you achieved in your previous position or how you exceeded the expectations of your boss or customer.

Bennett explained that job seekers often use these words to 'sound competent', but employers want to see how the candidate embodies these characteristics

Bennett explained that job seekers often use these words to 'sound competent', but employers want to see how the candidate embodies these characteristics

Bennett explained that job seekers often use these words to sound ‘competent’, but employers want to see how the candidate embodies these characteristics

Williamson also said that a company is looking for a specific desired skill rather than ‘enthusiastic’ or ‘hardworking’ traits.

“It is much better to use facts and figures where possible, show where you have used skills or accomplished so that the reader gets a comprehensive overview of your previous roles and responsibilities,” Williamson told Seek.

“This will add much more value than using overused buzzwords on your resume.”

To help those write their resumes, Seek has a series of free tips and advice that everyone can access career advice section of the website.

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