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Top 10 Overused Buzzwords to Avoid in Resume

The LinkedIn guys run some queries on their 85M members' profiles and come up with these 10 overused buzzwords. Chances are you have some of these on your resume right now.

Top 10 overused buzzwords in LinkedIn Profiles in the USA – 2010
  1. Extensive experience
  2. Innovative
  3. Motivated
  4. Results-oriented
  5. Dynamic
  6. Proven track record
  7. Team player
  8. Fast-paced
  9. Problem solver
  10. Entrepreneurial
The LinkedIn Blog

Why you shouldn't use these buzzwords on your resume? I'm going to post some comment from another blog
The reason everyone uses these terms on their resumes is because they sound great - clearly an employer would want to hire a motivated, results-oriented, entrepreneurial team player with extensive experience.

The problem is that simply describing yourself in these ways doesn't carry any water at all and generally makes you look like you're overselling. What you really want to do is show, don't tell. Illustrate these attributes throughout your resume in your bullet points. What did you do that shows you're a team player? Do you have an example of a company you started Mr. Entrepreneurial? Tell me about a time you solved a problem. Prove to me that your old boss would vouch for how motivated and innovative you are.

All of these buzzwords are overused because we all know they're exactly what employers are looking for. Trouble is, everyone can smell your bullshit a mile away. You can't just talk the talk, you need to have the resume to show you walked the walk.
 

DominiConnor

Quant Headhunter
I agree that cliches waste space on your CV, but think of those terms as a syllabus, not the material itself.
Every single one of those terms has appeared in many job specifications that I have read. At some firms they are aprt of the standard template put on all job specs.
 
I don't see "pro-active" on the list.

The problem as I see it is that if you don't use cliches in writing and in talk, you get into trouble. You're expected to use cliches. HR people, headhunters, and software are looking for those buzzwords, and even if they aren't exactly specified, they become uncomfortable if they don't see them. They become uneasy when they see something showing originality, something which doesn't fit neatly into preconceived boxes.
 
So I should probably take "I'm a motivated, team-playing problem solver with a proven track record of innovative ideas in a results-oriented, fast-paced, entrepreneurial environment" off my resume then?
 
I don't see "pro-active" on the list.

The problem as I see it is that if you don't use cliches in writing and in talk, you get into trouble. You're expected to use cliches. HR people, headhunters, and software are looking for those buzzwords, and even if they aren't exactly specified, they become uncomfortable if they don't see them. They become uneasy when they see something showing originality, something which doesn't fit neatly into preconceived boxes.

after visiting my school's career office they gave me a packet to help guide me with drafting my resume. on the back there is a list of "suggested words to use", which of course contains all from the list andy posted. however, i think if you don't use them you seem less "polished", unfortunately.
 
So I should probably take "I'm a motivated, team-playing problem solver with a proven track record of innovative ideas in a results-oriented, fast-paced, entrepreneurial environment" off my resume then?

Use them, but interspersed with illustrative material. When you say "team-player" add something (banal and not too long) to back up your contention. Stay away from complex words and complex sentence structures: they're a bane for resumes. If you wish, sparingly add a word here, a phrase there, which suggests you're a bit different from the rest of the herd. The perceptive will zoom in on it.
 
So I should probably take "I'm a motivated, team-playing problem solver with a proven track record of innovative ideas in a results-oriented, fast-paced, entrepreneurial environment" off my resume then?
The "team-playing" word is a bit odd to me. I assume that's your line under Objective header?
A better way to go would be:
Motivated team player looking to join a fast-paced entrepreneurial company to utilize my proven track record of innovative problem solving ideas in result oriented environment

I'm sarcastic.
 
I'm a motivated, team-playing problem solver with a proven track record of innovative ideas in a results-oriented, fast-paced, entrepreneurial environment.

Motivated team player looking to join a fast-paced entrepreneurial company to utilize my proven track record of innovative problem solving ideas in result oriented environment.

My resume objective line reads:

I am a fast-paced problem-solver seeking to establish a track record of innovation through team-playing in a result-oriented environment
 
“I have extensive experience in the results-oriented, fast-paced financial services space. A truly innovative and dynamic team player, I have a proven track record around problem solving and client delivery. Highly motivated, I am looking to develop my career in the entrepreneurial environment of investment banking.”

“You don’t need to tell anyone that you’re ambitious and motivated,” says Michael Moran, chief executive of outplacement and career services provider Fairplace. “This is for potential employers to decide during an interview.”

“Every single person writes that they’re motivated,” says Trevor Symons at recruitment firm Selby Jennings. "Candidates should focus on highlighting their unique selling points rather than filling a CV with how motivated and enthusiastic they are.”
The most irritating CV introduction ever written | News | www.eFinancialCareers.co.uk
 
I don't see "pro-active" on the list.

The problem as I see it is that if you don't use cliches in writing and in talk, you get into trouble. You're expected to use cliches. HR people, headhunters, and software are looking for those buzzwords, and even if they aren't exactly specified, they become uncomfortable if they don't see them. They become uneasy when they see something showing originality, something which doesn't fit neatly into preconceived boxes.

It's sad, it's like those situations where people go through the motions of some rehearsed socially approved dialogue that everyone knows is nonsense, and you watch this and just scratch your head and wonder with all the smart people on this earth - why?
 
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