Does Your Resume Sound the Same as Everyone Else's?

John Krautzel
Posted by

There are dozens of potential mistakes you can make when crafting your resume, but one mistake in particular is the one millions of job seekers make every day, and that's writing a resume without a human voice. So many aspiring job seekers mold their resumes using cookie-cutter language in order to fit in with their peers. That's the last thing you want to do with your resume. Here's what you should do instead.

1. Make a Decision

It's tempting to want to go for any job you're qualified for, which leads many job seekers to use language like "multi-talented business professional" in their resumes in order to cover a lot of bases at once. The problem is, if your resume features this kind of vague language, hiring managers don't really know what specific job to consider you for. Based on your experience and strongest skills, choose the exact kind of job you want, then brand your resume, your cover letter and all online profiles for that specific job.

2. Know Where to Send It

Don't just submit your resume to online job boards; that is one of the least efficient ways to find a new job. Hundreds and thousands of other job seekers do this every day, so it's no surprise the vast majority get little to no response. Instead, find out the name of the hiring manager at the firm you want to work for, then submit your resume and cover letter directly to him, with a tailored greeting and customized content.

3. Drop the Clichés

If your resume features phrases such as "results-driven," "team player," or "detail-oriented," it's time for a revamp. This kind of boilerplate, empty language is exactly what turns most hiring managers off. Replace the useless clichés with real, detailed examples to emphasize your accomplishments and skills. These examples show potential employers what you bring to the table.

4. Add a Human Voice

Submitting your resume to an actual human instead of a digital algorithm frees you from having to stuff a bunch of robotic-sounding language and keywords into it. Instead, introduce yourself in first person, and talk about the path that led you to where you are today. Hiring managers want to hire humans, not robots, and allowing a touch of your personality to shine through in your resume and cover letter puts you ahead of the pack.

Making your resume stand out from all the rest requires you to add a human touch. Narrow your focus down to one specific job that you want, tailor your resume and cover letter for that job, add personal language and send it to the hiring manager directly. By following these steps, you give your resume an advantage over the competition and drastically boost your chances of landing the position.

Photo courtesy of everydayplus at


Become a member to take advantage of more features, like commenting and voting.

  • Genevieve E.
    Genevieve E.

    Active with Crisis Response Ministry

  • Timothy E.
    Timothy E.

    Yes sending to the HR manager is great. That's why these big company hire a co-company to get resumes. So now what do I do. Hunt the HR guy down.

Jobs to Watch