Awhile back, a LinkedIn question asked about the ten most common (and least appreciated) resume clichés. Among the candidates were: results driven, detail oriented and team player.
When I write a resume, I’m less concerned with cliché words than cliché information. The words “team player” are perfectly fine to use – if your achievements and skills back them up. The examples in your resume should show what you’ve achieved as part of a team and should make you stand out from other candidates with similar claims.
Compare these two descriptions using the cliché “strategic thinker”:
- Strategic thinker: Able to come up with new approaches to serve the needs of customers.
- Strategic thinker: Redirected business resources into products with larger payback, driving an additional $150,000 in annual sales.
The details in the second bullet prove the candidate does indeed think strategically. Those details change “strategic thinker” from a cliché into a very valuable skill.
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