Employer Spotlight

Recruit Gen Y Stars

You need new tools to attract the new breed of talent - Experience will help you build your team with Gen Y stars.


Ease of Use

Our management dashboard helps you easily post jobs, pinpoint targeted candidates and manage your talent pipeline.


All Needles, No Hay

Don't wait for the best candidates to come to your door - with Experience, you can proactively target top talent.


Build Your Experience

Experience is your most important asset - we're here to help you find that next opportunity.


Tell Your Story

You're so much more than just your resume. Showcase your Experience.


Connections Matter

Introductions are made easy when you have Experience -- connect with alumni, mentors and industry insiders.


Use eRecruiting by Experience on campus?
Find your school here.

Home  > Article

25 Words That Can Hurt Your Resume

By Laura Morsch,

So, you're experienced? Before you advertise this in your resume, be sure you can prove it.

Often, when job seekers try to sell themselves to potential employers, they load their resumes with vague claims that are transparent to hiring managers, according to Scott Bennett, author of "The Elements of Resume Style" (AMACOM). By contrast, the most successful job seekers avoid these vague phrases on their resume in favor of accomplishments.

Instead of making empty claims to demonstrate your work ethic, use brief, specific examples to demonstrate your skills. In other words, show, don't tell.

Bennett offers these examples:

Instead of... "Experience working in fast-paced environment"
Try... "Registered 120+ third-shift emergency patients per night"

Instead of... "Excellent written communication skills"
Try... "Wrote jargon-free User Guide for 11,000 users"

Instead of... "Team player with cross-functional awareness"
Try... "Collaborated with clients, A/R and Sales to increase speed of receivables and prevent interruption of service to clients."

Instead of... "Demonstrated success in analyzing client needs"
Try... "Created and implemented comprehensive needs assessment mechanism to help forecast demand for services and staffing."

The worst offenders
It's good to be hard-working and ambitious, right? The hiring manager won't be convinced if you can't provide solid examples to back up your claims. Bennett suggests being extra-careful before putting these nice-sounding but empty words in your resume:

  • Aggressive
  • Ambitious
  • Competent
  • Creative
  • Detail-oriented
  • Determined
  • Efficient
  • Experienced
  • Flexible
  • Goal-oriented
  • Hard-working
  • Independent
  • Innovative
  • Knowledgeable
  • Logical
  • Motivated
  • Meticulous
  • People person
  • Professional
  • Reliable
  • Resourceful
  • Self-motivated
  • Successful
  • Team player
  • Well-organized

    Laura Morsch is a writer for She researches and writes about job search strategy, career management, hiring trends and workplace issues.

More Related Articles

Resume Writing
The purpose of your resume is to make the reader want to interview you. Resumes should be informative, concise, consistent, and should highlight intriguing skills and experience.

How should I represent my co-op position on my resume?
Have you ever felt as though your job might be "the one" - the job you really want to do? But sometimes it isn't meant to be. A student at the end of a co-op program would like to keep the job as a full-time position, but knows it has to end sometime soon.

Business Correspondence
Business correspondence serves a variety of purposes throughout the career cycle, but most of all it reflects professional courtesy during the job search.

Google Web Search
Didn't see what you were looking for?
powered by Google
Copyright ©2016 Experience, Inc Privacy Policy Terms of Service