What Does Your Resume Reveal About You?

The other day, I was telling a story in writing to prepare for a public speaking event. In reviewing my story, I discovered that I’d used the phrase “I realized” 3 times in 2 paragraphs. Oops! Clearly, I needed to dig deeper into my arsenal of phrases if I hoped to keep my listeners’ attention and be worth listening to.

Your resume is a crucial bid for attention from the people who matter most–hiring managers who have seconds to decide whether you are worth their time before moving on to the next resume. But you want the right kind of attention, rather than have your resume get posted as an example of what NOT to do (such as overusing the same phrase to death, like I almost did). There are many writing elements of style of which to be aware. For example:

Using language that is too formal or too academic can make an applicant’s résumé and/or cover letter sound derogatory or speechlike, which may appear like you are trying to fool the employer about your qualifications…The best way to set yourself apart is with examples that use industry-relevant words from your experience, not formal words that may make the reviewer feel stupid or–if used incorrectly–laugh at your application.

Click here for power verbs to make your resume stronger.

Originally published on careerbuilder.com by Beth Braccio Hering.

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