10 Terrible Resume Mistakes You Should Never Make Again — GrowthxSplendid

MARY ABIODUN
6 min readJan 24, 2023
Photo by krakenimages on Unsplash

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Your resume is that document that tells a prospective employer what you can do and if you should be called up for the next stage of the application process.

But most times, it is possible to fill it with irrelevant or inadequate information that makes it less interesting to whoever that’s viewing it.

It is also possible to make terrible mistakes that can cost you a job or an opportunity of a lifetime. You don’t want that, right?

Read how to stand out with your resume

Here is a list of 10 terrible mistakes you should not make on your resume again:

Cliché Introduction

First off, this part of your resume isn’t compulsory. You can do without an introduction on your resume.

For some resumes, the introduction is a career objective or profile or professional summary. They are different and they serve different purposes.

The Difference Between Career Objective, Profile, and Professional Summary

A career objective is great when seeking internships or entry-level positions. As the name indicates, it is an objective. It answers the question, “what are you hoping to achieve?”

A profile is used when you’ve got experience. It details a summary of your career or work history and other relevant engagements outside work. You can also show impact here.

A professional summary is similar to a profile but it is focused on your career so far and may not include other areas of work that is not related to what you’re applying for.

With these three forms of introduction, the career objective is most susceptible to clichés.

Clichés are common statements that everyone else is using.

You must have seen them before. An example is something like this:

Seeking an organization where I can improve my skills and contribute to the growth of your establishment.

Now, that’s cliché!

Got other similar cliché career objectives? Maybe you probably saw them somewhere… Share with me in the comments.

It’s not a must to have an introduction on your resume. It is better to leave it out than use clichés . These clichés are pretty boring and are no longer the norm but most people still make the mistake of using them.

Avoid them!

Spelling and Grammatical Errors

This is where proper editing comes in.

Lack of proper editing could send off a wrong message.

Grammatical and spelling errors can put off your prospective employer.

Editing tools come handy here and you can use the eyes of another person to check for these errors on your resume.

Asides spelling and grammatical errors is the error of clogging your bullet points with too many points.

The best practice is to talk about one major achievement in a bullet point. Otherwise, you might find yourself saying too many things and losing the major point.

As soon as you catch yourself using ‘and’ in a bullet point, then it is time to break it out as a separate bullet point.

Try this and see how simplified and straight-to-the-point your resume will become.

Responsibilities Over Achievements

This is a mistake that distinguishes between great resumes and shallow resumes.

No matter how lengthy your resume might be, if it is just a statement of responsibilities without concrete results, it is a bland resume.

It is not enough to state what you were constantly doing on a job or what your daily activities are about.

What matters is the results that those activities produced. This is where you state percentages, figures, and outcomes.

Did your actions save cost or increased revenue? Did you prevent a loss or a waste? Did you maximize resources and create new things?

This is what makes the difference — achievements and results trumps responsibilities!

Unnecessary personal details

I still see this all the time and it baffles me. What is your date of birth or age doing on your resume?

How about your address? It is not needed. Your location suffices. Area and country is fine but your full address is a no-no.

House numbers and street names are not required. You want to avoid social engineering so your location is just fine.

Your local government area is definitely out of it. You shouldn’t have that on your resume.

Your sex and marital status do not belong there. Your picture is also not necessary on your resume.

Your full name, phone number, email address, and links to social proofs of your work or LinkedIn page is all that matters as far as personal details are concerned on your resume.

Outdated Education History

This is another mistake I often see people make.

Why do you still have your creché, nursery, primary and even high school education on your resume?

Except your highest form of education is high school, then you shouldn’t have that. Your higher education already shows that you have the former. Start from here and include others that you have after this.

Your education history can also include organizations of learning outside of school or online platforms where you’ve taken courses.

Stop wasting precious space on your resume to include education history that’s not needed.

References

References are no longer required on resumes.

Saying ‘Available on request’ is also old practice.

Just take that section out. You will find more space to include information that speaks more about your skills and your abilities.

Using Expired Contact Details

When applying for a job or any opportunity at all, why should you have a phone number or an email that you no longer use.

Maybe it still exist but you no longer have access to it like you would, why do you still include it on your resume?

Use correct and appropriate email. No fancy emails. Use phone numbers that are reachable, not one that you have lost.

This is why it is important to always update your resume, which brings us to the next mistake you shouldn’t make again.

Not Up-to-date Resume

I see a lot of people submitting the same resume they used for their current positions for their next opportunities.

Doing this shows that your resume will be lacking important information from your current role. You might have had amazing results in your current position. Leaving that out of your resume can be a huge disadvantage.

Update your resume from time to time. You can never know when the next opportunity will come knocking. Don’t be caught unawares.

If you like, you can have a master resume that has all of your work history and everything you’ve ever done as it relates to career.

You can then take pieces of this to create a suitable resume for any opportunity you’re interested in.

Having Too Little Information

This happens when you want to fit your information into one page forgetting that a 2-page resume is also acceptable.

Sometimes, the resume template used causes this. Don’t box yourself to a template.

A simple word document that can help you express yourself is better than a sophisticated template that gives you no room to say so much about yourself.

Quite a number of people withhold important information that could give their resume a boost.

If you’re wondering what to put on yourself or thinking you have no much to say in your resume, read what you should do in this article.

In my experience creating resumes, I always have to ask questions to evoke this information because most people don’t think they are important.

And that’s why you shouldn’t make this last mistake.👇

No Professional Touch

Sincerely, you need a professional touch to your resume.

Seek professionals and their help to create a resume that speaks well about you.

You might be trying to create your first resume and be lost in the process or confused as to what to include. This is where you can use the expertise and experience of a professional that has done this several times over.

This professional can be a friend or someone you have to pay to do this for you.

All I’m saying is: seek help, ask for help, and you will find help.

Watch out for these 10 terrible mistakes and make your resume better.

Ask me questions in the comments section or send me your questions on Twitter: @maryabiodun01.

GrowthxSplendid by Splendid Uchechukwu

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MARY ABIODUN

Techie. Writer. Mentor. Teacher. Editor. Entrepreneur. Technical Writer. Growth Marketing