We read this piece and we had to chuckle. Having worked in recruiting and reviewed thousands upon thousands of resumes, yes there are several repetitive words that rear their ugly head. A lot.
And you know what? After a while they lose all meaning. There are certainly better ways to articulate what they mean and secondly, when they’re universal like saying you are proficient on a PC, well it’s the great equalizer. All candidates should be literate online.
Without further ado, thanks to a piece on Salary.com, here are several of their thoughts on commonly overused words…
1. “Highly qualified.” Um, the fact that you have a stellar resume should speak for itself to your impressive qualifications. (This reminds us of online dating. When a potential suitor includes photos in their profile, as they should, and then indicates “good looking” in their profile, it’s game over. Plus, it’s a bit self-serving.)
2. “Flexible.” The workplace is flexible and workers must be, too. In fact, one of the highly coveted traits should indeed be flexibility. The fact that you have to point it out isn’t necessarily a good thing. Yes, you can illustrate your ability to be flexible with a deadline or working arrangement on an interview but to include it on your CV seems like a moot point.
3. “Team player.” Again, you can illustrate ways you stepped up to the plate in a big way for the greater good of the team but these are two highly overused words in our opinion. Chances are no recruiter is actually looking on LinkedIn for profiles with this jargon. Instead, they’re looking for unique ways you’ll stand out and specialized skill sets.
4. “Hard worker.” This is so generic and not only that, it’s an assumption all recruiters have. If you have to point it out, your resume will not sparkle. Instead, include a bullet or two demonstrating that hard work such as, “Turned around clean copy on four pieces within 24-hours as a result of continuous requests from clients at a moment’s notice.”
5. “Problem solver.” Show, don’t tell. Recruiters expect you to solve a problem but the key is how you conduct yourself and how you reach the end result. Provide examples on your resume to pop and showcase your ability to do this. Otherwise, they will just look like empty words.