2 words you should never use on your resume and the power words to replace them with

Why using action verbs can increase your chances of securing an interview.

Do you know the average time a hiring manager spends looking at a resume?

7 seconds.

That’s not a long time to make a tremendous first impression, let alone keep them reading!

It becomes crucial to carefully choose words that draw them in at 7 seconds AND encourage them to read more.

But how?

Action verbs

According to Harvard Resume experts, the perfect resume should include action verbs.

Your resume is a marketing tool, so stick with action verbs. Avoid flowery and high-level claims like “results-oriented,” “team player,” “excellent communication skills,” or “hard worker.

Let’s say you wanted to highlight the following three skills in your resume-leadership, communication, and organization. 

Using Action verbs

Here are a few examples of action verbs that demonstrate you possess those qualities and skills:


Organized-a speaker series with over 40 practitioners in the field of Orthodonture.

Led-media campaigns for Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest


Presented-monthly, quarterly, and annual fiscal reports to CEO

Collaborated with business teams to streamline new product launches


Reduced application processing time by 25% by automating recruiting process 

Prepared sales and performance reports and reduced response time by 50% 

The action verb is what grabs your attention, and the explanation that follows helps support it. 

“Responsible for”: Avoid these 2 resume words at all costs.

According to Ken Coleman-America’s Career Coach, you should never use “responsible for” on your resume. 

Being responsible for something is just a circumstance…. it’s a weak and generic way to describe your abilities and accomplishments. Of course, you had responsibilities. Doesn’t everyone? And if not, did you really bring any value to the company?

Are you looking for more action verbs? Find them here for a variety of different skills and responsibilities. 

Seven seconds is not long for recruiters to assess your skills and responsibilities. 

Make it easy for them to remember you by using action verbs to highlight AND showcase your accomplishments!

It’s September! Time to plan for your recruiting needs or maybe facing a difficult hire? 

We can help! Let’s chat.