30 Power Words to Power Up Your Résumé & Boost Your Job Search

Does your résumé have the punch it needs to help you stand out? Is your cover letter well-written and convincing? Are you conveying professionalism in the e-mails you write to recruiters or hiring managers?

With unemployment still at record highs, the job market is intensely competitive. Simply having the job qualifications, education, and experience required is not enough to help you land the job in this market. Since each job now receives record numbers of applicants, competition is fierce. Just getting past the résumé pile and landing an interview can be quite an accomplishment.

So, to help you get past that first step in the process, you can give your résumé a little boost by using words that help employers see you have the extra skills they’re looking for. And, according to our recent poll that asked what the top soft skills employers want out of today’s worker, a strong work ethic, a positive attitude, and good communication skills are at the top of the list. So, here are 30 words you can use to show you’ve got what it takes for the demands of today’s world of work.

Words to Convey Work Ethic

1. Diligent
2. Consistent
3. Thoughtful
4. Accurate
5. Valuable
6. Thorough
7. Reliable
8. Results
9. Persistence
10. Improved

Words to Convey Positive Attitude

11. Solutions
12. Vision
13. Success
14. Encouraged
15. Innovative
16. Achieved
17. Motivated
18. Contributed
19. Collaborated
20. Outcome

Words to Convey Communication Skills

21. Spoke
22. Presented
23. Published
24. Negotiated
25. Inspired
26. Created
27. Shared
28. Conveyed
29. Timely
30. Concise

Use these words to revise how you describe job functions in your résumé and cover letter, or add details about yourself to other correspondence you write during the job search and interview process.

And, since employers want good communication skills in an employee, make sure to spell check and proof read every written document you use in your job search for proper grammar, tone, and form. Consider having a friend or trusted peer review these documents to make sure they’re professional, thoughtful, and convincing.

After all, you’re more than what you put on paper. But step one in the job process is to convince employers of that fact. Using the right words may be just the thing your job search needs.


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