Selecting the right tone for your CV can prove challenging. But by taking time to carefully select the right words can help you connect with a hiring manager and prove to them that you are the right person for the job.

The trick is to avoid overused words such as ‘loyal’, ‘energetic’, ‘punctual’, ‘motivated’, ‘enthusiastic’, ‘team player’, ‘client-focussed’ or ‘a people person’ as anybody can have those set of skills and they don’t particularly make you stand out.

Although these words are overused they aren’t particularly bad, but, if you do have to use them make sure that you clarify why these skills apply to you. For example, if you are team player how can you prove it? make sure you back up your listed skills with solid examples. Without these examples, your CV may be overlooked as they are seen as cliche.

Replace these words:

  • Loyal
  • Energetic
  • Punctual
  • Motivated
  • Hardworking
  • Team player

With powerful action verbs such as:

  • Developed (e.g. “I developed a new training programme”)
  • Achieved (e.g. “I achieved all my  yearly targets”)
  • Managed (e.g. “I managed a team of  six”)
  • Initiated (e.g. “I initiated a health and safety program”)

While it can be tempting to include these overused buzzwords, hiring managers want you to identify your own unique skills that make you stand out from other job seekers and show what you personally can bring to the role.

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