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  • Stephanie Clark

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One word you must eliminate from your interview

Posted by Stephanie on June 14, 2012

Before I begin writing a new client’s resume, we schedule a telephone conversation. Actually one client called it an interrogation! I ask many questions, and drill down to make sure that the information I have to work with is detailed and specific. Sometimes I end up with four pages of typed notes and it’s my task to distill the info into one or two pages of succinct, well worded, easy to read, highly relevant resume copy.

Not an easy task, but one that I relish!

Now, in those conversations, as I ask further questions to get to specifics, I often hear a client say “Oh, I just (insert one of your key skills here).” That word “just,” used in this fashion, to dimish or understate one’s contribution, doesn’t belong in any career conversation, at least in my opinion!

The odd thing is that so often the word is used to downplay a key talent or strength, one that is essential in the job to which the client aspires.

Would you have any faith in me as a professional resume writer (and feel confident paying me?) if I were to tell you “After interviewing you, I just take some of your words and type them out.”

Why then, would an employer have any confidence in your hire if you shared “I just tweaked a few processes, that’s all”? Own your skills! Speak of them with pride and realize that expertise has value. Here’s another consideration. Underplaying your abilities may undermine a lucrative starting salary. Demonstrate how your abilities brought real value to your past employers and you have salary bargaining power.

Working to your career success, Stephanie

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