By Meghan Casserly
Meet John: An Innovative, Motivated Problem Solver with Extensive Experience, John is a Dynamic, Results-Oriented Team Player with a Proven Track Record in Fast-Paced Entrepreneurial positions.Resume Cliches To Ditch
Sound like a promising job candidate? Or a walking cliché?
We're all guilty of business jargon: "I'll touch base later!" "Let's regroup!" "I'll put pen to paper on that one." "Circle the wagons!" Yet what's simply annoying in the workplace can be just plain hazardous on the job hunt.
According to Kathy Harris, managing director at Harris Allied , an executive recruiting firm based in New York, there are certain words and phrases that are so over-used they become red-flags in the interview process.
While Harris says most resumes are now read by computers scanning for keywords, she would be the first to set aside John's resume in favor of a much-clearer and less jargon-ridden CV. (Click here for tips to make your resume stand out.)
"I don't think these are necessarily the wrong words to use," says Steve Langerud, a career advisor and director of professional opportunities at DePauw University, "but they're certainly not the best-and they're not going to help you to stand out from the masses." When he sees a cover letter riddled with the usual suspects, "dynamic, proactive, motivated leader," he says his reaction is blasé: "Is this the best you can do?"
These are the over-used, cliched words to delete from your resume and your job hunting lexicon. What you say may not be what the hiring manager actually hears."I'm Detail-Oriented"
"As opposed to what?" chides Kathy Harris, principal with recruiting firm Harris Allied, "Detail-avoidant? A total scatterbrain?"
"No one can stand to spend time with you because 'intense' translates to a lack of understanding about personal space," Langerud jokes.
"I'm A People Person"
Peggy Padalino, VP at career social networking hub JobFox, says this will get you nothing. Well, maybe an eye-roll. "The interviewer will know if you are comfortable with people by the way you conduct yourself in the interview." You don't have to tell them.
"I'm A Real Problem Solver"
"Unless you're prepared with several examples of finding solutions to save the day, you're creating far more problems for yourself with this one," says Karen Drayer, director of recruitment at PG Shaw placement services.
See more resume cliches, here.
See also:10 Emails That Could Cost You Your Job