7/16/12

andy note: thought some of you could find these helpful (from monster.com senior editor)

Your resume needs an update -- that is, if your resume is like that of most people, it’s not as good as it could be. The problem is language: Most resumes are a thicket of deadwood words and phrases -- empty cliches, annoying jargon and recycled buzzwords. Recruiters, HR folks and hiring managers see these terms over and over again, and it makes them sad. 

Wouldn’t you rather make them happy? It’s time to start raking out your resume, starting with these (and similar) terms.

1. “Salary negotiable”

Yes, they know. If you’re wasting a precious line of your resume on this term, it looks as though you’re padding -- that you’ve run out of things to talk about. If your salary is not negotiable, that would be somewhat unusual. (Still, don’t put that on your resume either.)

2. “References available by request”

See the preceding comment about unnecessary terms.

3. “Responsible for ______”

Reading this term, the recruiter can almost picture the C-average, uninspired employee mechanically fulfilling his job requirements -- no more, no less. Having been responsible for something isn’t something you did -- it’s something that happened to you. Turn phrases like “responsible for” into “managed,” “led” or other decisive, strong verbs.

4. “Experience working in ______”

Again, experience is something that happens to you -- not something you achieve. Describe your background in terms of achievements.

5. “Problem-solving skills”

You know who else has problem-solving skills? Monkeys. Dogs. On your resume, stick to skills that require a human.

6. “Detail-oriented”

So, you pay attention to details. Well, so does everyone else. Don’t you have something unique to tell the hiring manager? Plus, putting this on your resume will make that accidental typo in your cover letter or resume all the more comical.

7. “Hardworking”

Have you ever heard the term “show -- don’t tell”? This is where that might apply. Anyone can call himself a hard worker. It’s a lot more convincing if you describe situations in concrete detail in which your hard work benefited an employer.

8. “Team player”

See the preceding comment about showing instead of telling. There are very few jobs that don’t involve working with someone else. If you have relevant success stories about collaboration, put them on your resume. Talk about the kinds of teams you worked on, and how you succeeded.

see the rest of the list at http://career-advice.monster.com/resumes-cover-let...

Comments (14)

7/16/12

Also, be careful saying you are an expert, "expert at Excel". They may call you on it.

7/16/12

Guilty of "responsible for"

In regards to "excel master" ... bring it. But seriously, don't.

I hate victims who respect their executioners

In reply to valuationGURU
7/16/12

valuationGURU:
Also, be careful saying you are an expert, "expert at Excel". They may call you on it.

BlackHat:
In regards to "excel master" ... bring it. But seriously, don't.

Unless you are, in fact, a Microsoft-certified Excel Expert
7/16/12

Are you an expert Turtle?

7/16/12

So regarding 2, does this mean do not mention references whatsoever or maybe include their contact details at the bottom. I've heard a lot of conflicting information about that

7/16/12

You hit #4 with a nail on the head. Its about your achievements not your experience.

Here to learn and hopefully pass on some knowledge as well. SB if I helped.

In reply to valuationGURU
7/16/12

valuationGURU:
Also, be careful saying you are an expert, "expert at Excel". They may call you on it.

Might I just add, also don't say that in an interview, even if you are baited, it will not end well. I interviewed someone looking for a full time Analyst position where I asked, "I saw that you worked at ___ bank last summer on a fixed income desk. Would you say you are a fixed income expert?". Yes, was the answer. Things went downhill from there.

adapt or die:
What would P.T. Barnum say about you?

MY BLOG

7/17/12

Anything that's not a power word. Such as "participated in," "observed"

In reply to SirTradesaLot
7/17/12

SirPoopsaLot:
valuationGURU:
Also, be careful saying you are an expert, "expert at Excel". They may call you on it.

Might I just add, also don't say that in an interview, even if you are baited, it will not end well. I interviewed someone looking for a full time Analyst position where I asked, "I saw that you worked at ___ bank last summer on a fixed income desk. Would you say you are a fixed income expert?". Yes, was the answer. Things went downhill from there.

+1. I'm sorry, but this made me laugh. I wouldn't consider myself an expert unless I was regularly being used in court as a expert witness, I was publishing significant research on a paper in a new field, I had done a PhD in the subject matter, and/or something similar.

To the OP, thanks for the post! It was very informative.

7/17/12

is there anyway to imply being meticulous without actually stating it outright?

In reply to BlackBox
7/17/12

don't provide reference information until asked. it is assumed that you have them. you don't need to tell people that you have references and you don't need to list your references until you are asked.

In reply to Onetwobit
7/17/12

--is there anyway to imply being meticulous without actually stating it outright?

describe a job or task that required you to be meticulous/detail oriented. provide results if possible. state that your TPS reports are accurate and rarely need correction by your supervisor.

7/17/12

When it comes to using the word "expert", it's like Guitar Hero: unless you can 5 star every song, just play the game on "Hard"

-Former (and current) Nerd

I hate victims who respect their executioners

In reply to abe_froman
7/17/12

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