These are the eight words you should avoid when writing your CV

Posted by
Megan Murray
backgroundLayer 1
Add this article to your list of favourites

If you’re on the lookout for a new job, you’ll know how difficult it can be to bag your dream role – or, sometimes, even get your foot in the door for an interview.

Thanks to the bustling career landscape our ambitions know no bounds, and while this is something to be celebrated, it can mean that getting a position is more competitive than ever, while getting noticed comes close to being an impossible feat.

Which is why, when a gem of career advice comes along, it’s important to take note.

And while we’re all eager to find out the top tips for nailing that interview or writing the cover letter of our dreams, it can be just as important to know what not to do in potential career-changing situations. Whether it’s knowing which questions to avoid asking in an interview or what to leave out of your LinkedIn profile, there are certainly some renowned no-nos when it comes to job hunting.

One of which starts at the very beginning of your job application journey: with your CV.

Obviously, we all want our CV to stand out among the crowd, with advice for doing so ranging from a graphically designed layout to changing the way your name is presented.

But according to the recruitment specialists at Purple CV, one of the biggest things to avoid is listing some of the go-to character descriptions that we’ve probably all been guilty of using.

Red reports that certain buzzwords, such as ‘hardworking’ and ‘dynamic’, are an instant turn-off for your future boss, and can come across as over-used, insincere and clichéd. And we have to admit, we can see where they’re coming from.

After researching the words people used most to describe themselves on their resume, the CV specialists have drawn up a list of eight terms that you should stay away from if you want to present yourself in a more unique way.

Here are the eight buzzwords we should be avoiding at all costs:

  • Hard-working
  • Reliable
  • Team player
  • Dedicated
  • Passionate
  • Strategic thinker
  • Results-driven
  • Dynamic

Watch:  Stylist career advice: "Failure is not a weakness"

The job application process is often very long, and it can be easy to become demotivated. But this research reminds us to stay original and true to ourselves.

Think about what qualities you bring to your office environment and the compliments you have received, and use these to paint a picture that comes across genuinely from your own voice.

As they say, you are your best asset, so do your best to let those reading your CV see that.

Images: Rawpixels


Share this article


Megan Murray

Megan Murray is a senior digital writer for, who enjoys writing about homeware (particularly candles), travel, food trends, restaurants and all the wonderful things London has to offer.