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SALT LAKE CITY -- With unemployment still very high, people all across the country are polishing up their resumes. There are, however, some items you should keep off of yours.
The trick to getting a job is to stand out. If you use the same old language on your resume everyone else is using, you're in trouble.
Take, for example, the phrase: "I have excellent written and verbal communication skills."
"If you're writing something like 'excellent written and verbal communication skills,' I mean, oh my gosh. Can't you be a little more creative?" Notus Career Management President Rhett Kasparian asked.
Kasparian says all those "something-hyphen-oriented" words are just getting old.
"They're just these clichés. [Others include:] 'a people-person,' or 'detail-oriented' if you're an accountant," he said.
The problem is these phrases are often found on the job posting, so potential employees feel they're safe to use.
Kasparian says the people writing the posting may be able to get away with copying and pasting things they saw from other resumes, but you can't. So, if the language you use on your resume sounds robotic or doesn't sound authentic, you should change it right away.
Kasparian recommends something he calls deviant marketing; meaning, write something different that no one will expect.
"‘Multi-tasks like a banshee,'" he quipped. " [Or] ‘builds rapport like none other.'"
Kasparian says it's still important to sound professional, but do something to stand out from the rest.
While you do want your resume to show you have a lot of work experience, you don't want to disclose exactly how many years of experience you have.
"If they can easily deduce that you're old or too young … you want to try and leave them guessing in that area," Kasparian said.
He says some employers may jump to the conclusion that they can't afford a particular applicant because they have too many years of experience. A phrase like "strong work experience" works well.