Action verbs

10 great action verbs for your resume

  • 1 Accelerated
  • 2 Accomplished
  • 3 Calculated
  • 4 Created
  • 5 Developed
  • 6 Executed
  • 7 Improved
  • 8 Maximized
  • 9 Planned
  • 10 Solved

Cheat sheets:
resume action verbs + examples

Verbs are words that describe an action or a state of being. If you’re trying to land a job, you must use action verbs in your resume and cover letter to describe your capabilities and achievements.

A phrase like, “I’m a good worker” isn’t going to help you get a job. It’s unclear what makes you a good worker and that makes your statement fall flat.

Action verbs are more descriptive and paint a clearer picture of what you do to achieve results at work than state-of-being (inactive) verbs like “is, am, are, were.” You should be specific by using active verbs to describe what makes you a good employee like your ability to “deliver orders” or “follow instructions.”

Below, we’ve provided helpful cheat sheet lists of resume action verbs and organized them by the types of situations in which you should use them.

You’ll find action verbs for:

Action verbs for when you achieved something

  • Advanced
  • Amplified
  • Boosted
  • Completed
  • Designed
  • Developed
  • Earned
  • Enhanced
  • Established
  • Exceeded
  • Expanded
  • Fulfilled
  • Honored
  • Improved
  • Lifted
  • Maximized
  • Met
  • Overcame
  • Produced
  • Remodeled
  • Revitalized
  • Stimulated
  • Won

Achievement action verb examples:

  • Maximized company profits 4% by sourcing materials from a new vendor.
  • Overcame sales slump by launching email campaign.
  • Met and exceeded production quotas.

Action verbs for when you executed a plan

  • Achieved
  • Administered
  • Completed
  • Delivered
  • Enacted
  • Finished
  • Fleshed out
  • Followed
  • Functioned
  • Installed
  • Instituted
  • Operated
  • Practiced
  • Progressed
  • Reached
  • Replaced
  • Solidified
  • Undertook

Execution action verb examples:

  • Fleshed out restructuring plans to improve company profits by 6%.
  • Delivered packages within the daily 12-hour window.
  • Achieved desired student test score improvement three years in a row.

Action verbs for when you worked on a team

  • Acknowledged
  • Added
  • Assimilated
  • Blended
  • Coalesced
  • Collaborated
  • Communicated
  • Conjoined
  • Contributed
  • Coordinated
  • Embraced
  • Harmonized
  • Honored
  • Ignited
  • Joined
  • Melded
  • Merged
  • Mixed
  • Paired
  • Participated
  • Partnered
  • Recognized
  • Respected
  • Shared
  • Teamed up
  • United
  • Volunteered

Teamwork action verb examples:

  • Partnered with other local brands on events and promotions.
  • Collaborated cross-functionally between design and content teams.
  • Contributed and shared ideas during team meetings.

Action verbs for when you managed a project or team

  • Advised
  • Assigned
  • Authorized
  • Chaired
  • Coached
  • Cultivated
  • Delegated
  • Directed
  • Dispatched
  • Enabled
  • Encouraged
  • Enforced
  • Entrusted
  • Executed
  • Facilitated
  • Fostered
  • Guided
  • Headed
  • Hired
  • Hosted
  • Informed
  • Inspired
  • Led
  • Mentored
  • Mobilized
  • Motivated
  • Orchestrated
  • Oversaw
  • Overhauled
  • Shaped
  • Spearheaded
  • Supervised
  • Tasked

Management action verbs examples:

  • Supervised a team of three junior illustrators.
  • Tasked with the audit of total operational costs.
  • Spearheaded the creation of hybrid work company guidelines.

Action verbs for when you helped customers or clients

  • Advertised
  • Advocated
  • Aided
  • Answered
  • Assisted
  • Bonded
  • Cared
  • Counseled
  • Ensured
  • Fielded
  • Gave
  • Handled
  • Informed
  • Offered
  • Provided
  • Rendered
  • Recommended
  • Resolved
  • Served
  • Upsold

Customer or client action verb examples:

  • Handled phone calls and assisted customers with service issues.
  • Provided daily quotes and follow-up calls to our business clients.
  • Recommended food items based on dietary restrictions.

Action verbs for when you created or designed something

  • Began
  • Built
  • Composed
  • Conceived
  • Conceptualized
  • Constructed
  • Crafted
  • Customized
  • Devised
  • Drafted
  • Engineered
  • Founded
  • Initiated
  • Introduced
  • Invented
  • Launched
  • Originated
  • Pioneered
  • Programmed
  • Proposed
  • Started
  • Wireframed
  • Wrote

Creative action verb examples:

  • Wireframed structure for proposed website design.
  • Conceived a new workflow process to improve efficiency by 14%.
  • Engineered and built a functional prototype model.

Action verbs for when you did analysis or problem-solving

  • Adapted
  • Analyzed
  • Assembled
  • Assessed
  • Audited
  • Brainstormed
  • Clarified
  • Collated
  • Debugged
  • Deduced
  • Discovered
  • Evaluated
  • Examined
  • Forecasted
  • Gathered
  • Identified
  • Inspected
  • Mapped
  • Measured
  • Modeled
  • Observed
  • Quantified
  • Tested
  • Tracked
  • Troubleshot
  • Uncovered
  • Visualized

Analysis or problem-solving action verbs:

  • Forecasted and modeled financial data to present to executive stakeholders.
  • Tracked consumer satisfaction ratings from collected website data.
  • Tested and debugged SQL code.

Action verbs for when you performed research

  • Cataloged
  • Checked
  • Collected
  • Compiled
  • Conducted
  • Explored
  • Fact-checked
  • Interviewed
  • Investigated
  • Organized
  • Presented
  • Read
  • Researched
  • Studied
  • Surveyed
  • Verified

Research action verb examples:

  • Surveyed customers to improve service quality.
  • Verified previous peer review studies.
  • Fact-checked all published data.

Action verbs for training and teaching

  • Certified
  • Created
  • Educated
  • Explained
  • Evaluated
  • Graded
  • Guided
  • Hosted
  • Informed
  • Instructed
  • Lectured
  • Led
  • Passed
  • Planned
  • Presented
  • Quizzed
  • Taught
  • Trained
  • Tutored

Teaching and training action word examples:

  • Trained four new hires on procedure and daily tasks.
  • Created lesson plans for daily coursework.
  • Led classroom of 20-25 fourth-grade students.

Action verbs for when you improved numbers such as sales, profits or customer satisfaction ratings.

  • Accelerated
  • Added
  • Achieved
  • Capitalized
  • Conserved
  • Converted
  • Decreased
  • Deducted
  • Drove
  • Exceeded
  • Expanded
  • Expedited
  • Furthered
  • Gained
  • Generated
  • Grew
  • Grossed
  • Improved
  • Ignited
  • Increased
  • Maximized
  • Optimized
  • Outpaced
  • Outperformed
  • Outsold
  • Profited
  • Reduced
  • Sold
  • Stimulated
  • Surpassed
  • Sustained
  • Yielded

Improved performance action word examples:

  • Sold a weekly average of $4,000 in product.
  • Sustained company growth for 11 consecutive quarters.
  • Reduced overhead by 17%.

Action verbs for when you communicated

  • Authored
  • Briefed
  • Campaigned
  • Conferred
  • Convinced
  • Conveyed
  • Corresponded
  • Critiqued
  • Cowrote
  • Discussed
  • Displayed
  • Drafted
  • Edited
  • Expressed
  • Illustrated
  • Lobbied
  • Outlined
  • Persuaded
  • Promoted
  • Publicized
  • Reviewed
  • Spoke
  • Talked
  • Wrote

Communication action word example:

  • Critiqued work of three junior designers.
  • Wrote weekly company newsletter to share project successes.
  • Co-wrote and edited pitches to investors.

Action verbs are more attention-grabbing for your resume reader and will give you an edge over other candidates who aren’t as precise with their language.

In a resume, active verbs are best used in the professional summary and work experience sections. You should also include them in your cover letter.

Now you’ve seen a lot of great action words you can use on your resume, and just need to incorporate them!

If you want an extra edge in adding these action verbs, check out LiveCareer’s best tool to create a well-written document, our Resume Builder.

Our builder makes it easy for you to include the right action verbs because it has prewritten industry-specific phrases that you can select and add to your resume.

Our database targets these suggested phrases for the job to which you’re applying. They include active verbs in smart, best practice business language.

It cuts out a lot of the guesswork in writing a resume! That’ll save you a lot of stress, and you can complete your document in 15 minutes.

Make my resume

How to use verbs to
prove your skills

A common mistake many people make when writing their resume is relying on adjectives to present themselves instead of verbs to explain what they do. You need both!

To be clear, adjectives are words that describe something, like its size, shape or color. That includes personal traits like “helpful,” “ambitious” or “hard-working.”

In contrast, verbs are action words that refer to doing things like, for example, talking, seeing or listening.

Adjectives alone aren’t as effective as verbs on a resume because they tell, but they don’t show or prove.

Your claims will be more convincing if you reinforce adjectives with verbs to support or demonstrate the skills you mention.

We’ve compiled this list to show you verbs that reinforce or prove adjectives you might use to describe yourself:

Resume adjective

Verb to reinforce

  • Self-starter
  • Insightful
  • Intelligent
  • Cutting-edge
  • Visionary
  • Meticulous
  • Unique
  • Thoughtful
  • Devoted
  • Talented
  • Competent
  • Determined
  • Genuine
  • Knowledgeable
  • Persistent
  • Dedicated
  • Honest
  • Sincere
  • Disciplined
  • Initiated
  • Identified
  • Solved
  • Invented
  • Created
  • Caught
  • Specialized
  • Brainstormed
  • Persisted
  • Awarded
  • Functioned
  • Motivated
  • Verified
  • Trained
  • Overcame
  • Drove
  • Entrusted
  • Served
  • Forged

Buzzwords to avoid

Avoid cramming your resume with tired, overused or boring language –– it will hurt your chances of getting noticed by hiring managers!

Action verbs are a great way to avoid uninspired or passive resume-speak. They add clarity and urgency to your message.

We created this chart that illustrates how you can enhance your resume by swapping out overused buzzwords with action verbs:

Outdated resume buzzwords

Use action verbs instead

  • Hard worker
  • Excellent
  • Go-getter
  • In charge of
  • Strategic thinker
  • Expert
  • Outside the box
  • Responsible for
  • Innovative
  • Go to
  • Results-driven
  • Team player
  • Detail oriented
  • Focused
  • Super
  • Ninja
  • Great
  • Achieved
  • Outperform
  • Executed
  • Headed
  • Strategized
  • Awarded
  • Envision
  • Managed
  • Developed
  • Trusted
  • Measure
  • Collaborated
  • Spotted
  • Oversaw
  • Exceeded
  • Trained
  • Improve

If you’re still not sure if your resume’s language is fresh, active and exciting, you should use our Resume Builder.

Our builder was created by career experts who understand the best-use phrases to include in resumes and cover letters.

They’ve paid careful attention to ensure that the written suggestions our builder offers you are active, engaging and up-to-date.

It’s like having an expert guide you through the whole process!

Build my resume

About the Author

Eric Ciechanowski

Eric Ciechanowski Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW)

Eric Ciechanowski is a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW), certified by the Professional Association of Resume Writers and Career Coaches (PARWCC). He graduated from Tulane University in New Orleans with a B.A. double major in Creative Writing and Philosophy. His career background includes fields as diverse as education, hospitality, journalism, copywriting, tech and trivia hosting.

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