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Ask an interviewer – any interviewer – what the most frustrating aspect of interviewing potential new employees is. You might think the reply would be that too many people apply for positions they’re not qualified for or maybe even the number of applicants who arrive late or unprepared. Odds are, you’d be wrong on both counts. A. Harrison Barnes, a career coach and the founder of, says the most exhausting part for many interviewers is the way many resumes resemble the next. Too many “Responsible for” and “Duties included” can make anyone’s head hurt. You need to create a resume that has impact, is creative and uniquely yours.

Don’t allow one verb to become overused in the course of your resume. Think “develop” here. There are other words that allow for a better flow of your resume and serve your purpose nicely. How about:

” Instituted

” Introduced

” Established

” Implemented

The founder also recommends words such as “enhanced”, “refined”, “cultivated”, “generated” and even “produced”. These are all words that usually aren’t the first ones that come to mind when putting together a resume. Better still, A. Harrison Barnes recommends a resume writing service, such as the one found on A team of experienced writers can really make your resume shine and stand apart from all others competing for an interviewer’s attention.

While using stale verbs won’t put you out of the running for a position, if you can avoid them, why wouldn’t you? Take a step back and try to see your resume as an interviewer would. Remember, it’s your career at stake and you can be sure you’re not the only candidate that’s applying for an opening. Not only that, but the resume and cover letter are the first introductions of you to a potential employer. And you get one shot to make it count. As much as an employer looks for talent, ability, education and all the other “must haves”, employers are also looking for creativity and someone who thinks outside the box. This is the ideal opportunity to show that ability.

You develop a plot of land. You create/implement/write a standard operating procedures manual. Keep your resume tight and focused and steer clear of the same tired catchphrases and verbs – you’ll feel better about submitting it for consideration and you can be sure it’s a refreshing change for an interviewer.

It just takes a few extra minutes of proofing and if you have problems coming up with something different, a quick internet search will work wonders, says Barnes. A resume can be flawless but still be boring. Shake things up and ensure your resume not only gets noticed, but is remembered, too. You never know when it’s a small detail that makes the difference between a polite letter thanking you for your time, but that they’ve chosen another candidate and a phone call that says “Welcome aboard!”

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