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Q: LinkedIn recently announced its 2013 list of the 10 most overused words in member profiles. One of them is “responsible.” Why isn’t this a good word to use? What are good words to use in a resume or profile instead, and what are good words to use to make a resume stand out?
A: LinkedIn is correct to advise against using the word “responsible” as in “Responsible for conducting surveys, updating spreadsheets, and producing reports.” First, it’s unclear as to whether or not you actually performed these tasks or if you managed one or more employees who did. If you did perform them, then you should just say so, and use the opportunity to describe your actions and their results. Your resume shouldn’t be just a list of job duties.
> Formatted, printed and compiled survey details and summary data into executive reports and delivered to senior management.
If, on the other hand, you managed a team of one or more people who performed these duties, you could describe it this way:
Here are a few of the many words that will give your resume a facelift. Don’t overuse them, and/or use those which are not applicable.
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