What to Avoid on a Resume

Creating an effective resume is essential for securing a job interview and ultimately landing the job. While it’s crucial to highlight your skills, qualifications, and achievements, it’s equally important to know what not to put on a resume. Here are some things you should avoid including:

Personal Information

Your resume should not include personal details like your age, marital status, gender, race, religion, or political affiliations. These details are irrelevant to your qualifications and could lead to bias or discrimination.

Irrelevant Work Experience

Only include work experience that is directly related to the job you’re applying for. Listing unrelated jobs or experiences can clutter your resume and divert attention from your relevant qualifications.

High School Information

Unless you are a recent high school graduate with limited work experience, avoid including high school information on your resume. Focus on your education and training after high school.

Negative Language

Avoid using negative language or highlighting weaknesses. Your resume should emphasize your strengths and accomplishments rather than drawing attention to areas where you may be lacking.

Unprofessional Email Addresses

Use a professional email address for your contact information. Email addresses like “partygirl123” or “crazycatlover” are unprofessional and may not be taken seriously by potential employers.


It’s not necessary to include references on your resume. Instead, create a separate reference page to provide to employers when they request it. Be sure to obtain permission from your references before sharing their contact information.

Generic Objectives

Skip generic or vague career objectives like “Seeking a challenging position where I can utilize my skills.” Instead, tailor your resume with a professional summary that highlights your unique qualifications and career goals.

Spelling and Grammar Errors

Typos, grammatical mistakes, and formatting errors reflect poorly on your attention to detail. Proofread your resume carefully or seek assistance from a trusted friend or professional proofreader.

Hobbies and Personal Interests

Unless your hobbies or interests are directly relevant to the job you’re applying for, it’s best to leave them off your resume. Employers are primarily interested in your professional qualifications.

Long Paragraphs or Excessive Detail

Keep your resume concise and easy to skim. Use bullet points to present information clearly and avoid long paragraphs that may overwhelm the reader.

Unexplained Employment Gaps

If you have employment gaps, address them in your cover letter or during the interview, but do not draw attention to them on your resume. Focus on your skills and qualifications instead.

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