Resumes are the main instrument for any job seeker, whether you’re a fresh graduate or a seasoned career climber looking for a better position. Resumes give your potential employers a first impression about you, your work ethics and your personality.
Therefore, having a polished resume is of the utmost importance, as it can make or break your career. Whatever job vacancy in Malaysia you are applying for, your resume can be the key to your dream job.
Employers generally prefer resumes that are fresh and original, rather than one that is full of overly used clichés and phrases that have recycled in almost every resume since the dawn of employment. These are some of those words you should try and avoid incorporating into your resume.
Yes, anyone can claim that they’re hardworking. In fact, every other potential rival for the position probably has the word ‘hardworking’ on their resume as well. Though it may be true that you are hardworking, you can always find a more creative and sincere way of describing yourself, for example ” Passionate about delivering assistance and always learning”.
This is probably one of the oldest cliché words in the book and will most probably cause the HR executives or managers roll their eyes as they’ve seen it for the umpteenth time. Rather, describe your work experience in detail to show how you have solved some problems independently in one of your previous positions, for example how you managed to fix a bug on a website at record time, or ensured timely delivery of stock when the delivery van broke down mid-way.
This phrase can take on several forms, most commonly results-driven, results are a priority, etc. Once again the rule here is to show from your previous work experience. If you’re in sales, describe what lengths you went through to achieve monthly targets or how you befriended your client and went the extra mile for him or her.
“Best in Class”
This is especially true for fresh graduates. Yes, you may have been at the top of your class in University, College and school. However, in the real world, your tons of A+ won’t matter much if you have no working experience. It has been proven time and again that employers value experience over grades, and your statement can come across as boastful and arrogant. Therefore, stick to the humble voice and describe your previous experiences that are relevant to the position applied.
For the more experienced job seeker, you may want to emphasize the fact the you are very senior in the field. However, words like veteran, seasoned, experienced and others conjure up an image that you are older than what you really are. So however long you’ve been in a certain field, there’s no need to emphasize it as HR personnel can judge your seniority based on the list of past positions you’ve held.
“Reference available upon request”
This phrase gives an impression that you may not be open about your private life and may even have something to hide. If you pass the preliminary screenings, you will eventually be required to provide references to back up your claims, so you might as well release them in your resume.
Technically, being ambitious isn’t a bad thing, but having this word on your resume gives employers the impression that you’re a power hungry employee out to climb the corporate ladder, and may not stay very long in the company. No one likes losing an employee so soon after the hiring process, as they’ll have to undergo the hassle of hiring again. Also, no one wants a troublemaker in the company that sound like they’ll do anything to get promoted, including backstabbing and creating tension.
Hopefully, this list has helped you in whatever small way to understand that you should always make your resume your own. Let your unique personality and style shine through, rather than copy-pasting what others have written. Remember that employers will be very impressed if they see a creative streak in you that sets you apart from the rest.