Every candidate wants his or her resume to capture the attention of a hiring manager. Surprisingly, many applicants who have excellent work experience are often overlooked; not because they aren’t qualified, but because their resumes and cover letters aren’t very effective.

We get it. You want to sound fancy and accomplished on your resume. The challenge is that most resumes have the same old words (cue “led” “managed”). Your resume should be crafted with purpose, and every single bullet point should be meaningful and highlight your badassery!

Effective and captivating are almost synonymous with regards to resumes and cover letters.

How is it that some applicants’ resumes seem to pop, and others simply get lost in the pile? One word, two syllables: Power.

What are resume power words?

Power words make a world of a difference whether you’re writing a resume, cover letter, or even a presentation.

They immediately bring life to your professional experiences, skills, and strengths. If your goal is to stand out, try using a few of these power words below.

What are good action words for a resume?

Whether you led a project, saved the company money, increased efficiency, there is a word for that! While this is not a full comprehensive list, we think this is enough to spark some ideas and get your thoughts flowing.

If you managed a team or project, use resume power words like oversaw, coached, or supervised.

If you reached a goal or milestone, words like generated, created, completed or successfully are great options.

Resume power words list:

  • Resume 
  • Oversaw
  • Implemented
  • Founded
  • Controlled
  • Added
  • Completed
  • Represented
  • Successfully
  • Initiated
  • Devised
  • Assisted
  • Organized
  • Facilitated
  • Invested
  • Demonstrated 
  • Created
  • Achieved
  • Negotiated
  • Determined
  • Outlined
  • Generated
  • Positioned
  • Upgraded 
  • Advised
  • Instituted
  • Minimized
  • Coached
  • Administered
  • Coordinated
  • Planned
  • Supervised

resume power words list

The overall goal here is to clearly articulate how you’ve provided value to the company.

By choosing strong action verbs for your resume, the potential employer should be able to see how you will bring those skills to the role for which you are applying.

According to Glassdoor.com, here are 10 words & items you must have in your resume.

  1. Show Numbers – this effectively tells the story of the actual results achieved and numbers are always compelling. Impressive numbers for sure will grab the interviewer’s attention.
  2. Re-designed
  3. Launched
  4. Modernized
  5. Value or Valuable
  6. Orchestrated
  7. Create, led or managed
  8. Spearheaded
  9. Committed
  10.  And also provide examples 

On the other hand, here are a few resume buzz words that are over-used and can come off as cliche in your resume:

  1. Go-getter
  2. Team-player
  3. Results-driven
  4. Hard worker
  5. Great
  6. Strategic Thinker
  7. Detail-oriented
  8. Innovative
  9. Ninja
  10. Expert

ALSO READ: What NOT to Put On A Resume: 10 Things You Can Leave Off

Now, let’s look at the difference between a bland resume, and one with power words.

Resume Without Power Words – The “NO” pile 

US Bank

Personal Banker

Anywheretown, USA

September 2020-Present

  • Marketing and sales
  • Sell products to customers
  • Good customer service
  • Employee training with new team members
  • Day-to-day office work

Resume With Power Words – The “YES” pile

US Bank

Personal Banker

Anywheretown, USA

September 2020-Present

  • Devise and implement innovative marketing principles and promotional sales ideas to further support the goal of acquiring new clientele.
  • Facilitated cross-sell banking services and products to potential clientele.
  • Successfully execute all sales tools, including profiling customers’ needs to ensure a consistent and valued customer experience.
  • Partnered in cross-training other/newer staff members in sales and operations as needed.
  • Proactively assist management with daily activities as assigned

Notice the difference? Now, go and power up that resume!

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