How to Avoid Common Resume Mistakes

How to Avoid Common Resume Mistakes Don’t allow your creativity to break certain rules when it comes to resume writing.

Resumes can be tricky. Of course you want to stand out by being creative in drafting your resume. However, it’s important to keep in mind that there are rules pertaining to typos, misspelled words, and grammatical errors. And don’t forget about using the right format when creating your resume.

Resumes should be written concisely. If you want to fragment sentences to break grammatical rules (and free up space), you must do it carefully.

As you write your resume, consider word choice and phrasing to grab the attention of the reader to increase your chances of being offered an interview. Below are some guidelines you may want to use to help you create a resume that displays outstanding personal branding.

Action Verbs

When describing your experience, it is best to use action verbs. This approach makes it easier for you to explain what you’ve accomplished on the job. However, action words don’t function as keywords. Keywords are nouns or short phrases which can be combined with action verbs in a single sentence.

First Person

Do you know that most resumes are written in first person without actually using “I”? Because of this, you may want to draft your resume first by using “I” to make sure you are consistent with your wording. After that, you can go back and cut out the references to yourself and end up with tighter writing.


It is important to be consistent with the use of tenses to make sure your resume has that professional touch. Use past tense for your previous experience and present tense for your current position.

Use of Articles

As much as possible, the articles “a”, “an” and “the” should be omitted. They are unnecessary words in your resume. At the same time, they take up valuable space and can be distracting to the reader.


Make sure to maximize the use of punctuation to make it easier for the reader to understand your resume. Know when to use commas and parenthesesto create a pause or present information as a side thought.

These guidelines should help you create a quality resume. For a different perspective, you can ask a mentor or a friend to proofread your resume and catch mistakes you may have missed.

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Alan Carniol

Alan is the creator of Interview Success Formula, a training program that has helped more than 40,000 job seekers to ace their interviews and land the jobs they deserve. Interviewers love asking curveball questions to weed out job seekers. But the truth is, most of these questions are asking about a few key areas. Learn more about how to outsmart tough interviewers by watching this video.