Words Matter in Resumes and Cover Letters

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Words do matter when writing resumes and cover letters. You want to engage your reader with attention-grabbing word pictures by using strong action verbs to highlight job accomplishments instead of just ticking off your job duties. Compelling action verbs will emphasize your successes in your resume and cover letters and set yourself apart from your competition

Below is a list of strong action verbs for use in your resumes and cover letters. Additionally, you can download this helpful, detailed example of action verbs with real-world job duties: Sample Action Verb Bullet Points. Use this detailed list of action verbs for even more action verbs.

A
Achieved, accomplished, adapted, addressed, analyzed, authored, authorized, assessed, assisted, appraised, amended, advised, allocated, altered, accelerated, acquired, acted, aided, assembled

B
Budgeted, built, balanced

C
Compiled, combined, challenged, chaired, committed, communicated, coordinated, calculated, contributed, commissioned

D
Decided, developed, disclosed, documented, discovered, designed, determined, demonstrated, deferred, distributed, directed, devoted, drafted, doubled, diversified

E
Exercised, expected, earned, elected, engaged, entered, engineered, employed, edited, evaluated, entertained, eliminated, exchanged, ended, exempted, endorsed, expedited, experienced, enforced, explained

F
Facilitated, focused, financed, fueled, figured, fit, formed, fortified, functioned

G
Guided, grouped, gave, garnered, granted, generated

H
Hired, handled


Improved, identified, installed, inspired, interviewed, issued, invested, illustrated, implemented, incurred, innovated, inspected, invented, interpreted, instilled, inaugurated, informed, induced

J
Judged

L
Located, lectured, launched, litigated, lobbied, led

M
Mastered, managed, merchandised, modified, met, minimized, modeled, measured, moderated, motivated, multiplied, marketed, maximized, moved, mediated

N
Negotiated, noticed

O
Operated, owned, observed, oversaw, organized, obtained, oriented

P
Participated, printed, proposed, pursued, persuaded, perceived, preserved, processed, promoted, planned, performed, pioneered, passed, prioritized, provided, profiled, polled, presented, procured, purchased, placed, permitted

Q
Quoted

R
Ranked, resolved, received, rewarded, revised, revitalized, revamped, responded, restored, rejected, reinforced, reinstated, rehabilitated, remedied, redesigned, recruited, recovered, recorded, reduced, replaced, retained, retrieved, reversed, ran, raised, reached

S
Save, secured, stabilized, scheduled, screened, settled, separated, sent, selected, shaped, shortened, showed, signed, simplified, sold, staged, standardized, steered, stimulated, strategized, surveyed, supported, supplied, substantiated, supervised

T
Trained, tabulated, took, traveled, transformed, tested, transferred, tailored, targeted

U
Utilized, uncovered, united, updated, undertook, unified

V
Verified, valued, validated, visited

W
Witnessed, worked, weighed, wrote, won, welcomed