Resumania™: Prune the Flowery Prose in Your Resume and Cover Letter

By Robert Half on November 10, 2014 at 8:00am

Instead of writing to impress, write to inform. As we’ve noted previously, excessive wordiness and formality in your resume or cover letter can come across as stilted, pretentious or forced.

Save yourself the trouble and skip the flowery clutter. Cut to the chase with succinct, straightforward language that clearly highlights your skills, accomplishments and professional experience. The following job applicants missed the mark:

COVER LETTER: “I am a lover of big words that make me sound important."

We’ll keep a dictionary nearby during the interview.

COVER LETTER: “In your forthcoming response I shall remain.”

‘I look forward to hearing from you’ would also work.

“SKILLS: Can gel into a paradigm shift.”

Sounds messy.

“SUMMARY: The combination of my communicating skills and technological background has made for an efficient and knowledgeable individual who is technologically malleable, and coherent in statement.”

Are you positive about that last part?

“OBJECTIVE: Herewith, I am seeking a position in which I can combine my past management and development skills in a strong human being-oriented environment.”

She’s a true people person.

“SKILLS: Writing/listening/eaking. Yes, I can engage in intellectual conversations with a myrad of professionals.”

‘Speaking’ of ‘myriad’ mistakes …

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