Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Avoid These Common Errors on Your Resume

No matter your qualifications, a resume full of errors is likely to land you in the “no” pile. Your resume must speak for you when you are unavailable to speak for yourself. If the resume is sloppy, lacks attention to detail, and is full of errors, it appears this is how you will perform on the job.

Proofreading your resume before you send it to a potential employer is critical to success. For some employers, if they find just one error they will not even consider interviewing the candidate. Don’t rely on the spell check function; it won’t catch most of these common errors.

Spelling and Word Use Errors
I once sent a cover letter addressed “Dear Hiring Manger.” Since then, I have learned that there is an AutoCorrect function in Microsoft Word that allows you to automatically fix your common errors. Following are some of the most common misspelled words you might use on a resume: Judgment, Commitment, Consensus, Indispensable, Liaison, License, Occurrence, Occasion, Perseverance, Privilege, Separate, Proceed, Acceptable, A While (always two words), Accommodate, Acquire, Acquit, A Lot (always two words), Conscientious, Experience, Guarantee, Immediate, Noticeable, Recommend, and Weird.

Word Use Errors
Most errors on a resume are misuse errors versus misspellings. The spell check functions do not catch these errors. They are spelled correctly; they are just not used properly. Here are some of the most common offenders:

Its versus It’s – This is one of the most common errors. That tiny little apostrophe can make a big difference. To keep it simple, it’s is a contraction of the words “it is” or “it has,” while its is possessive. It’s going to rain. Its tires were flat.

Your versus You’re – You’re is a contraction of “you” and “are,” while your is possessive. You’re my best friend. Your hands are cold.

Their versus There and They’re- Once again, they’re is a contraction of the words “they” and “are,” while their is possessive, and there refers to distance. They’re going to their house over there.

Ensure versus Insure – When you insure something, you are referring to insurance. When you ensure something, you make sure of it. I ensured my family was insured.

Lead versus Led – When referring to leading in the past tense you use led. When talking about a metal, or using the present tense of leading, you use lead. However, they are pronounced different based on the meaning. I led a project team. I want to lead this team. He has lead poisoning.

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