There are several phrases and words that employers feel show up on nearly every resume and come up in nearly every interview. Because of this, they’ve completely lost their meaning. To stand out, you need to showcase your professional abilities as unique, different, and better than the other candidates.
To help you out, check out the list below of the most cliché resume words and phrases. Edit your resume, video resume, and cover letter to check that you are either avoiding them or supplementing them with evidence.
- “I’m a people person.” Not only is this phrase very cliché, but it also does not provide the employer with any substantial information. If you have good interpersonal skills, this will be very apparent in your video resume and interview. Focus on showing this skill rather than saying it.
- “I’m very driven.” Again, this should be apparent from the information provided in your resume and video resume. Did you graduate from a top university with academic honors and a double major? Or did you drop out of college after a year?
- “I’m a detail-oriented person.” If you’re a detail-oriented person, then your resume and cover letter should be completely free of any spelling mistakes or grammar errors. Employers will be able to gather how detail-oriented you are by how well edited your resume is.
- “I’m hardworking.” First of all, no one is going to say that they are not hardworking, so this phrase doesn’t make you unique or special. To make this phrase more real, provide examples of times that you went the extra mile in the workplace, and definitely be prepared to justify this statement in an interview.
- “I’m a leader.” Do not make this statement without adding examples that showcase your leadership qualities. If you cannot tell employers how you have been a leader, they will probably start to question all of the other characteristics you’ve claimed to have.
- “I assisted in Task XYZ.” What exactly does this mean? What did you do as an “assistant”? This statement does not provide the employer with any information about your professional capabilities and previous experience. Be more specific. Did you help formulate and carry out an e-mail marketing strategy? Were you responsible for the design-related elements of the task? Phrases that answer these kinds of questions will be much more useful to employers.
Don’t get me wrong. All of the above qualities are desirable. However, employers are dulled to them because of their overuse. Be sure to supplement any cliché statements with examples and focus on showing them rather than naming them.
If you’re looking for a way to showcase your soft skills, such as good communication skills, charisma, motivation, and energy, consider making a video resume. Employers will appreciate the opportunity to see your soft skills before the interview.