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Is It Ok To Use Personal Pronouns In A Resume

These Mistakes Will Send Your Resume On A Trip

What are Possessive Pronouns?

Carrie Greenberg

Before you mail, fax or e-mail your resume and cover letter, make sure your materials have that professional polish.

Easy Errors

  • DON’T forget to include your contact information: Name, e-mail, address and phone number.
  • DON’T include your interests on your resume, unless they’re relevant to the job you’re seeking. Also, personal information, such as date of birth, height and weight, should normally not be on the resume.
  • DON’T forget to replace a company’s name with the correct one if you are using a similar cover letter or resume for more than one job application. For example, in a cover letter for IBM, “I believe my skills would fit well with Microsoft’s goals.”
  • DON’T use personal pronouns or articles . A resume should be written in a telegraphic way, omitting personal pronouns and limiting articles.
  • DON’T fudge dates, job titles and work responsibilities. If a prospective employer checks your references and finds out you lied, you can kiss that job goodbye.

Winning Tips

Monster.com contributed to this article. Check out Monster.com for job and internship listings.

Any Revealing Personal Information Can Offer An Opportunity For Unconscious Bias On Resumes So Making The Conscious Choice To Include Information About Gender Can Be A Difficult Decision To Make Elaine Varelas Recommends First Doing Your Research And Then Making A Choice About What’s Important To You


Q: Should I put my preferred pronouns on my resume? I identify as non-binary and I use they/them pronouns, but in my experience, many workplaces dont know what that means. Am I putting myself at a disadvantage by including that information? What about people wanting to add he/him or she/hers?

A: Its good to recognize that every item you decide to put on your resume showcases who you are. As you may already understand, some people will accept preferred pronouns on your resume without a second thought while others will question why youve decided to make this statement on your resume. You have to decide how meaningful this information is for you to provide in a tool meant for job searches where everything is judged harshly, some might say. Could this be putting yourself at a disadvantage? Unfortunately, probably so.

The world is not 100% accepting of many kinds of diversity, and studies have been shown that even names that are not easily pronounceable or traditionally white-sounding have experienced discrimination. Simply put, names, gender, or anything that can signify religion or any other cultural diversity impacts an applicants ability to get through screeners. Some can actually be beneficial, if you get the right screener, but signifiers can create challenges by generating unconscious bias, and your gender identity and non-binary pronouns fall into that category.

Can You Say I In A Resume

No, you cant say I in a resume. Although saying I in your resume experience section wont lose you any job opportunities, its unnecessary and will make your bullet points sound awkward.

Hiring managers know that when you refer to an accomplishment or responsibility on your resume that youre talking about yourself. You dont need to start sentences with first person pronouns like I, me, us, my, or we.

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Itll Help Ease Any Anxiety You Feeling

The idea of putting your pronouns in your resume is another means or way to eliminate stress when you list them on your resume.

It takes away the feelings of anxiety when you find yourself going into an interview or professional situation about potentially having to clarify your pronouns and gender identity.

Haven listed your pronouns allows you to feel comfortable and safe going into an interview so you can remain focus on your work experience and qualifications. In this situation you dont have to correct a hiring manager who misgenders you.

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Should You List Pronouns In Work Correspondence

Cv writing in the first person

If you are a transgender or non-binary individual, displaying your preferred pronouns in work correspondence, such as an e-mail signature line, is a simple way to let others know how you wish to be addressed.

However, cisgender individuals may also want to display their pronouns in work correspondence for three important reasons:

  • It normalizes the practice and discussions about gender in the workplace.
  • It helps creates a more inclusive work environment.
  • It identifies those individuals as an ally of the LGBTQ+ community.
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    Should I Share My Own Pronouns

    Even if you think it seems obvious what pronouns to use , sharing your pronouns lets everyone know exactly how to address youand perhaps more importantly, it helps everyone feel welcome.

    “When cisgender people share their own pronouns in meetings, social situations, email signatures, etc., it creates an environment where transgender and non-binary people feel they can safely share their pronouns, too,” GLAAD says.

    What Are Some Common Resume Mistakes

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  • Use “I” sparingly in your resume. It can come across as arrogant or self-promoting, which will not make you stand out among the competition. Stick to using first and last names only, or initials if needed.
  • Make sure your resume is well formatted and easy to read. Keep it simple and avoid formatting that is too fancy or difficult to understand.
  • Be sure to highlight your skills and accomplishments in a way that makes them easily accessible for employers. Try listing key points at the top of the page, followed by a brief description of each skill or accomplishment.
  • Take advantage of online resources like LinkedIn and Google search engine optimization to help promote your resume online and reach more potential employers. Utilize keywords that describe the skills you offer, and include links to relevant websites where potential employers can learn more about you .
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    Words To Avoid And Include On A Resume

    Related: Resume Words to Include and Avoid

    In this video, we provide examples of persuasive resume action words and words that should be avoided.

    You only have a short time to make an impression with your resume. In those moments when a potential employer is scanning your skills and experience, its important to choose words that will communicate the value youve added in previous roles.

    Using common business terms like wheelhouse or go-to person can seem like the best way to get your qualities across efficiently. However, words like these have become so overused that they have lost meaning and wont help you stand out from other applicants.

    Instead, choose action-oriented phrases that show rather than tell why you should be considered. For example, instead of saying that youre a results-driven team player who delivers impactful results, hiring managers want to see something like, I developed a streamlined delivery process that reduced revenue slip by 20%.

    Image description

  • c. Description of role and achievement

  • Education

    • Best

    Reasons Not To Include Gender Pronouns On Your Resume

    Pronouns | Pronoun for Kids | Pronouns for Grade 1 | Pronouns in English Grammar
    • It risks discrimination, subconscious or otherwise. While overt discrimination on the basis of gender identity is illegal, it can still happen, which may or may not be a risk youre willing to take.
    • Youre not comfortable openly sharing your pronouns. Youre under no obligation to come out, especially at work.
    • Youre still unsure, not ready to commit to specific pronouns, or your pronouns change regularly.

    Ultimately, the choice of whether to list pronouns on your resume is a completely personal decision and is fine either way.

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    Why Are Pronouns Important

    Referring to someone by their chosen pronouns is more than simply being polite . Using a persons correct pronouns can make them feel seen, empowered, and respected in the workplace.

    Conversely, calling someone by their incorrect pronouns especially after theyve made their pronoun preferences known, can make that person feel embarrassed, disrespected, and even unsafe among colleagues and co-workers.

    A study by the Harvard Business Review revealed that 32% of trans or gender diverse people surveyed feared losing their job if they came out at work. This constant stress can lead to diminished work performance, reduced creativity, and lower job satisfaction.

    Tweak The Personal Profile For Every Job Application

    The more experience you have, the more this tip applies to you. Use your personal profile to showcase to the recruiter in just a few lines why they should contact you. Lets say, for example, youre applying for a Marketing Manager role. Go through the job description with a fine-toothed comb to extract the skills and keywords they use. Then, mention your experience of those areas within your profile this shows the recruiter what you can and will do if they recruit you .

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    Do Use Keywords In Your Resume And Cover Letter

    Keywords are the heart of electronic resumes and job banks. Many employers and recruiters use keywords to search resume databases. The more keywords that you have to match the companys keyword search the better odds your resume will be viewed. A keyword search will look for words of skills, knowledge, abilities, personal traits, work experiences, and academic requirements. When writing your resume, it is a good idea to precede your keywords with an action verb and end each statement with specific facts and figures. Your base resume should contain as many keywords for the position/career youre looking for as possible. We recommend reviewing about 10 job postings for your position and make a keyword list from each, and then you can compile a solid list of words you need to include.

    What Are Additional Ways To Support A Gender Diverse Workplace

    Faulty Pronoun Reference

    Using pronouns in correspondence is one part of normalizing discussions of gender and pronouns in the workplace. Here are a few other suggestions:

    • Include your pronouns in by adding them after your last name.
    • Start meetings by asking each attendee to introduce themselves by name and to share their chosen pronouns.
    • If you are a recruiter or hiring manager, ask interviewees what their desired pronouns are at the start of an interview.
    • Never assume pronouns based on a persons appearance. Politely ask what pronouns they prefer to use.
    • When introducing yourself, state your desired pronouns up front. This will give the other person an opportunity to state theirs.
    • If you accidentally misgender someone, apologize for your mistake and try to get it right in the future.
    • Talk to co-workers and colleagues about why recognizing gender diversity is important.

    Its long been considered embarrassing for all involved when getting someones gender wrong. Classic examples include calling the man with long hair miss or calling the woman with the deep voice sir over the phone.

    But today, society is recognizing that gender identity is not just limited to being either male or female. Gender exists on a spectrum and we can never assume someones pronouns. Using preferred pronouns in work correspondence is an important step towards inclusivity.

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    What If I Make A Mistake When I’m Using Pronouns

    It happensespecially if it’s someone you’ve known for a long time who changed pronouns.

    The solution: Apologize. “If you accidentally use the wrong pronoun for someone, apologize quickly and sincerely, then use the right pronoun moving forward,” according to GLAAD. “It’s best not to make a big deal out of your mistake and draw attention to itthat just makes everyone more uncomfortable.”

    Avoid misgendering a colleague repeatedlyas misgendering a person could be considered harassment in a workplace.

    ‘think Outside The Box’

    “Think outside the box” is a cliché term that irks nearly a third of hiring managers.

    Again, show how you are innovative. Tell a story about how you, say, contributed an unusual solution that attracted new clients for your company.

    Once you’re out of school, your grades aren’t as relevant. The exception is if you’re a recent college graduate and you have a stellar GPA.

    But if you’re more than three years out of school, or if your GPA was lower than a 3.8, ditch it.

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    Itll Help You Find An Inclusive Workplace

    In some situation, many will react against putting your pronouns on your resume believing it can lead to discrimination but little did they know that theres a great benefit such that it can help weed out non- inclusive workplaces for instance a company may find you totally qualified for the job being identified as a non-binary but refuse to invite you for an interview, you can tell from there that such a company may not make you feel comfortable working for them.

    Yes If You Are A Leader Of Change And Want To Help The World Move Forward You Are Showing That You Have An Inclusive Mindset And You Are Joining Those Who Are Normalizing Self

    Personal pronouns and verb ‘to be’

    This logic doesn’t make any sense. If I saw it on a resume, I literally wouldn’t ask about it. It wouldn’t be a point for you or against you, I really DO NOT CARE. Personal questions like that aren’t supposed to be asked in interviews anyway, so it would be inappropriate for me to bring it up. If in response to one of my questions you want to bring it up in an interview, I’ll listen to the story of your struggles, and I’m sure in many circumstances that story could be relevant. But it could be just as relevant as one of the million other struggles that someone has overcome. You don’t see anyone listing their “personal struggles” on a resume to be asked about them. If you want people to call you something, tell them, otherwise if you are ok with people calling you by you biological gender you don’t have to specify. Be whoever you want to be, no one is stopping you.

    If I was submitting my resume to a large organization I would leave it off. I would not know who is filtering the resumes and how nameless people might respond. I would use other datapoints to judge the culture of the organization. Within the organization, I most definitely use pronouns. You can call it virtue signaling if you want. It signals I am a leader of an inclusive group. And my hope that this small act lets people feel more included. I certainly realize it may turn off clients or other PwC folks.

    Rising Star


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    Avoid The Use Of Pronouns In A Profile

    You can write your personal statement in the first person or the third person . However, you do not need to use ‘I’, ‘he’ or ‘she’ in a CV because its use is implied. Try to start each line with a verb, such as implemented and cut out the pronoun . Implemented a marketing campaign resulting in immediately attracts attention.

    Personal Pronouns On Your Resume Or Linkedin Profile

    You may have noticed pronouns being included on social media profiles, email signatures, and in the job search process in general. Including pronouns can prevent accidental misgendering, helping you avoid having to correct a hiring manager or recruiter using incorrect pronouns. It could also help you identify an inclusive workplace. There is no one blanket rule/policy that can apply to all, and your decision to include your pronouns is a very personal one.

    There are a few ways that you can clarify your pronouns within a job application process. If you want to include on your resume, you can simply add your pronouns under your name in the header . Another perhaps less obvious way to include your pronouns is in your cover letter, beneath your signature at the bottom of the page. You can add your pronouns in parentheses next to your name, or you can add an additional line under your name/title. Sometimes, job applications will ask you to identify your salutation of Mr./Ms./Dr./other.

    If you do want to include your pronouns on your career documents, there are a couple of ways to do so.

    While there can be many benefits to including your pronouns, the unfortunate truth is that there is still hiring discrimination in some quarters, so delineating your pronouns on your documents is ultimately your choice. You may have other opportunities, during the interview or after hiring, to share your preferred pronouns.

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    How Can I Avoid Age Discrimination With My Resume

    How can you use i in a resume?

    There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best way to use i in your resume will vary depending on your experience and skills. However, some tips on how to use i in a resume include using it to highlight your qualifications for certain positions, highlighting your achievements or experiences that are relevant to the job you are applying for, and using it sparingly so that it does not overshadow other important information. Additionally, be sure to proofread your resume carefully before submitting it online or printing it out, as typos can lead to potential hiring managers rejecting your application.

    Why Is It Bad To Use Personal Pronouns In A Cv

    Avoid second person academic writing

    I am applying for a new job, and I am rubbish at writing CVs, so I often have a look at the examples and templates on-line, and it says that you should use not use personal pronouns in these examples.For example

    Instead of:

    I Solved an IT issue

    You should use:

    Solved an IT issue

    Why is it frowned upon or bad to use personal pronouns in a CV/Resume?

    EDIT: Is it acceptable to use I once or twice, or would you advise against it completely?

    • 2My top priority is clarity. I have never hesitated to use “I” when the alternative is a convoluted sentence structure and a turgid narrative. Vietnhi PhuvanApr 15, 2014 at 8:07
    • Just a footnote: In these days of electronic applications, avoiding “I” may simplify extracting quotes from the resume when the applicant is being discussed.

    Because it makes the readers go to sleep after the 567th repetition of I. And because it saves space which is helpful when you have 30 years experience and only 2 pages to put it on. And since it is a CV, the reader will assume it was you and no-one else who did the task.

    You put your name at the top. It is implied that everything on your CV would pertain to you, so there is only a need to include other people where appropriate.

    It gets a little repetitive

    • I did this.
    • I did that
    • I did something else.

    This is great if you really want to hammer the point home that “I did …” but again, it’s your CV so it is implied.

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