Good words to use in a resume (and what they mean)

Words are our framework of meaning.
Every one is a metaphor reaching to something beyond its simple spelling and articulation. Words have incredible power.
Words create worlds. The words we use define ourselves and the world around us. They shape our reality. Our words determine our ideologies. Jon Foreman,
  • Use “success verbs.” These are action verbs that require you to quantify a result to complete your thought. (They’ll stand out if you don’t.)
  • Use quantifiable metrics. This is the second half of using “success verbs,” but it gets its own bullet point: complete the thought that the “success verb” begins.
  • Speaking of which: use bullet points . Your goal is to make your achievements stand out so that your future employer or hiring manger can easily find them.

“Verbs such as ‘increased,’ ‘decreased,’ ‘improved,’ ‘reduced,’ are all success verbs. Explicitly forbidden are active verbs and phrases that are nonetheless static: ‘managed,’ ‘my responsibilities included,’ ‘hired to,’ ‘was responsible for,’ and so forth. Verbs that merely tell a fact rather than show you in a heroic light.

Words like ‘managed,’  ‘established,’ ‘defined,’ and ‘performed’ are not  very good, even though they are active, because they don’t sell your future employer on what you are able to do, or what benefits you are able to bring to their team.

Use “success verbs.” These are action verbs that require you to quantify a result to complete your thought. (They’ll stand out if you don’t.)
Use quantifiable metrics. This is the second half of using “success verbs,” but it gets its own bullet point: complete the thought that the “success verb” begins.
Speaking of which: use bullet points . Your goal is to make your achievements stand out so that your future employer or hiring manager can easily find them.
“Verbs such as ‘increased,’ ‘decreased,’ ‘improved,’ ‘reduced,’ are all success verbs. Explicitly forbidden are active verbs and phrases that are nonetheless static: ‘managed,’ ‘my responsibilities included,’ ‘hired to,’ ‘was responsible for,’ and so forth. Verbs that merely tell a fact rather than show you in a heroic light,.

Words like ‘managed,’  ‘established,’ ‘defined,’ and ‘performed’ are not  very good, even though they are active, because they don’t sell your future employer on what you are able to do, or what benefits you are able to bring to their team.

Words to To Avoid
Check out this list of buzzwords and phrases you should avoid on your resume, along with some tips on how to better use that precious real estate on your job application materials.

‘Hard worker’
What you think it says: “I’m dedicated to doing my job well.”

Of course you’re a hard worker! Even if you aren’t, it’s not like you’re going to admit otherwise on your resume.

Instead of stating the obvious, prove it. “Give real-life examples of how you go the extra mile,” says Cheryl Palmer, an executive career coach and owner of Call to Career in Fayetteville, Georgia.

Better buzzword: Include the word “achieved,” and back it up with examples of what you’ve accomplished. “For example, you could say, ‘Achieved sales goal for three consecutive years with a reduced staff.’ This shows that you, and your staff, are hard-working while you avoid saying so directly,” suggests Palmer.

‘Creative,’ ‘outside the box,’ ‘innovative’
What you think it says: “I come up with good, new ideas.”

“If you could actually think ‘outside the box,’ you’d be able to phrase it less blandly,” Scherwin says. These trite descriptors can actually undermine your case if you don’t back them up with specifics.

To really show off your creativity, share examples of how you developed and implemented new ideas or processes. If you work in a creative field, such as advertising or web design, pursue industry awards, which can serve as outside validation for the uniqueness of your work.

Better buzzword: Include the word “created.” It shows that you’ve produced something new and original.

‘Excellent communicator’
What you think it says: “I know how to talk and listen to people to get stuff done.”

Rule of thumb: If you have to tell people you are something, you likely aren’t that something. You must embody a trait for people to take notice.

Instead of dropping in this meaningless phrase, provide examples of how your communication skills led to specific positive outcomes.

Better buzzwords: Use the words “listen” and “improve” to indicate how your actions made the company better. “I listened to my customers’ feedback and used that information to create a streamlined process that improved efficiency by two hours.”

‘Responsible’
What you think it says: “I’m in charge of this.”

Your resume is no place for vagueness, and writing “responsible” on your resume—as in, “I was responsible for xyz”—leaves it unclear exactly what role you played.

Get specific about the level of authority you had. If you managed the project, say that. If you launched it, say that.

Better buzzwords: Hiring managers prefer more specific words, like “managed” or “directed,” with details about your contribution, according to Palmer. And use numbers to make your accomplishments stand out. Metrics, data, or any kind of stats help recruiters and hiring managers see the impact you made.

‘Expert’
What you think it says: “I’m the best at this.”

There may be portions of your job that you know so well, you can do them with your eyes closed—but that doesn’t mean you get to claim “expert” on your resume. True experts don’t need to proclaim their elite status; instead, they let their well-earned reputations on the job speak for themselves.

Better buzzwords: Use action words, such as “published” or “delivered,” to demonstrate your professional clout. Focus on your years of experience and training, and give examples that show off your authority. For example, “Published 10 articles in industry magazines,” or, “Delivered keynote address at three industry conferences.”

Check your language
You want your resume to appear fresh and contemporary, but you also want it to say something that hiring managers would consider valuable. Want to make sure your writing efforts are paying off? Get a free resume evaluation today from the experts at Monster’s Resume Writing Service. You’ll get detailed feedback in two business days, including a review of your resume’s appearance and content, and a prediction of a recruiter’s first impression. Generate buzz without fizzing out.

accelerated
achieved
added
awarded
changed
produced
reduced
Acknowledged
Assimilated
Embraced
Encouraged
Energized
contributed
decreased
delivered
eliminated
exceeded
saved
sold
streamlined
Contributed
Diversified
Blended
Coalesced
Collaborated
expanded
gained
generated
grew
improved
Gathered
Harmonized
Ignited
Joined
Melded

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