Resume Action Words - Explanation and Use Guide

It is difficult to overestimate the power of words. Psychologists say that words can heal, hurt, and inspire particular actions of other people at the same time. The language is simultaneously a thing we use every day and one of the most powerful tools we have. In our case, they can also influence responsible officers' decisions and help you find a perfect job. Each word in a short and concise document, like a resume, plays a crucial role in building a successful career. Mastering using both power and action words and keeping away from useless and passive ones is one of the essential aspects of creating an effective resume.

Competent design of the resume, its adaptation to a specific vacancy, an optimal number of keywords, correct text formatting, readability, and other features are also of great importance. How and when you sent your resume plays a role too. You can use action words while describing your qualifications, past work, and, above all, in the section dedicated to your previous achievements, since HR officers pay particular attention to it.

Why Is It Recommended to Use Action Words?

Action words for resume turn the document into a durable one for a couple of reasons. Firstly, they replace dull lines that HR officers hate because they read them a hundred times a day. Secondly, action words for a resume can depict more vividly your career achievements and convince the company officers in your deep understanding of the job parameters. With the right choice of power words for resume, you can state that you did not merely cope with your responsibilities at the previous workplace, but managed to achieve concrete and substantial results. Resume power words point at what you want precisely and, additionally, give your story an exciting touch.

Resume action words assist you with concisely and adequately explaining your previous tasks, achievements, and responsibilities in your resume. However, it's a good idea to use common power words for resume with caution and not overdo it. Do not exaggerate your positive outcomes and results obtained. Remember that HR managers can ask you to comment on each phrase, provide facts and proof, and also verify this data by contacting your former employers. Everyone should keep in mind that the correct choice of action words means much more than their number in your resume.

Using active words action for resume also reduces the need to link other words in sentences. Assisting yourself with power words, you can compose more laconic and semantically deep phrases in your resume. In the end, the method of using action words can save a boring resume from a trash can. If you are still editing a resume that you made in college for every job opening, the chances are that it looks similar to resumes created by other college and university graduates. Active words can help you positively stick out from other people to be hired for your dream job.

You should also rewrite the list of your successes. Use active voice and action verbs, it will not only help you shorten the text of your resume. It will also make your qualifications look more attractive and appealing on paper. While editing and, possibly, rewriting your resume will take some time, it is a practical way to get an invitation for a job interview.

How to Determine Which Active Words Are Better?

Some power words for resume might be more efficient than others while describing your personal skillsets and job history. For starters, dedicate some time to reread the job description and focus on the job requirements. How do they match your strengths? Think which action words can better demonstrate your previous accomplishments and personal traits. Do not go over the top with it, if you jump the shark, you will alienate your prospective employer.

For instance, if you want to contend for an opening in customer service and the vacancy requires some experience in training and controlling a customer support team, you can mention a sentence like this one: "Acting as a team mentor, I trained three novice customer support agents to receive calls, cope with complains, and be useful to clients."

Then, find the company's website and learn the critical points of their corporate culture and business values. Be sure to indicate this information both in your resume and personal statement. If the firm is seeking responsible employees with strong business ethics, you may write in your resume: "Used to explore the chances to accumulate my experience and progress with my skills by accepting complicated tasks and working hard to achieve company goals."

If you are not sure where to place the action words in your resume, consider each verb and find synonyms with a more definite meaning to replace them. In that way, your resume will become more convincing, and it will assure company officers in your valuable business qualities. Picking out the right words is extremely critical in life and in job-hunting especially, you need to learn to get a hold on your own narrative.

Active and Passive Voices of Verbs

As a rule, action words for resume are verbs put in the active voice. Besides, some adjectives, nouns, and pronouns can also be used to produce a strong effect and enhance your writing significantly. However, you should not mix action words with the active voice of verbs.

This term pertains to the choice of a suitable word, and the verb voice pertains to the syntactic design of the sentence. The voice of the verb depends on who performs the action. If the person is the subject who performs the action, this is an active voice. The passive voice comes into play when the action is done by a person who is a pronounced object.

The passive sentence is almost always longer and decreases the strong effect of the central verb. We often use phrases with verbs put in the passive voice in their speeches and various documents, including resumes. Also, these verbs can be easily converted into the active voice if you know the way to do it and how the meaning of the line will change.

In a resume, accomplishments are always more vital than responsibilities. So, verbs in active voice are smarter to use for describing previous achievements. You need more than simply choose the right action verbs for resume. The use of inappropriate words can be harmful if you did not pick them properly. Make sure you entirely get the meaning of action words for resume you are putting in.


We do not insist that using resume action words in a resume is a panacea for achieving success and getting the best possible work. But you can agree that every detail matters when it comes to finding a well-paid job. Such accents as the right selection of words, along with putting verbs in the appropriate forms, are fully justified. And you only need to learn to use resume power words one time, after that, they will become a very useful tool in your professional toolbox. We wish you a successful word choice and happy employment!

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