Powerful Verbs to Elevate Your Resume from Boring to Engaging




  • — April 12, 2017


    The last thing you want your resume is to be is boring and generic. If an employer could plug in someone else’s name and everything else still applies, chances are you’re headed for the “no” pile. There’s nothing that makes you stand out or entices them to want to learn more. One of the most common culprits of a boring resume is word choice; more specifically, verbiage.


    Take a look at your resume. If you’re using the same verbs over and over again to start your bullet points, it’s time to make a change. Imagine you’re a recruiter skimming dozens of resumes and they all look the same: managed, developed, increased, managed, developed, increased … it becomes redundant and unengaging very quickly. Then you see a resume that is filled with words like designed, maximized, negotiated, capitalized, spearheaded, and generated. It makes you want to take a second glance and see just what these powerful verbs are leading to.


    There are thousands of words in the English language and even more if you include those we borrow from other languages. Why settle for using the same ones time and again? Revamp your resume and breathe new life into your career history. Here are a few powerful verbs to consider integrating into your resume:


    Management: Advised, approved, collaborated, delegated, instituted, mentored, negotiated, orchestrated, spearheaded


    Process Improvement: Championed, consolidated, converted, decreased, engineered, grew, implemented, improved, increased, overhauled, reduced, restructured, streamlined


    Organization: Analyzed, arranged, monitored, prepared, processed, registered, scheduled, verified


    Training: Coached, educated, empowered, evaluated, facilitated, simulated, standardized taught, tested


    These are just a few of hundreds of potential verbs you can use. Check out an online thesaurus if you’re at a loss for synonyms. At the same time – make sure the verbs you’re using actually mean what you think they mean. You don’t want to completely alter the meaning of your sentence by choosing the wrong word. Also, avoid going overboard with fancy vocabulary; you still want employers to understand what you’re saying.


    Changing up your verbiage can make your resume read like a completely different document and give it a new look and feel. You’re also more likely to catch an employer’s attention if you’re not using the same worn out verbs as everyone else and instead are illustrating your career history and bringing your accomplishments to life.

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    Author: Amanda Clark


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