Terms That Successfully Indicate Your Leadership Talents

Even the most experienced leaders must prove their skills to potential employers. Often, it’s not enough to simply state “excellent leadership skills” on your resume. In a perfect world, your experience should speak for itself. Yet whether you are seasoned or an aspiring leader in your field, there are certain terms that will help you solidify these strengths on your resume as well as during an interview.

Terms for Leadership - Man at laptop with writing tablet


Recruiter, career strategist, and author, Jenny Foss, has offered a practical list of terms for job seekers to choose from that will truly reiterate their strong suits in various leadership positions.

Show your abilities as a trailblazer.

Since innovation plays an important role in decision-making and the ability to move forward with effective plans, clearly this particular skill is a vital part of being a well-rounded leader. Foss recommends the following expressions:

  • Ignited
  • Modernized
  • Optimized
  • Piloted
  • Pioneered
  • Revitalized
  • Spearheaded
  • Transformed

Indicate Your Financial Prowess

Most leadership positions will include some element of money-management, so it’s important to cover your bases. Showing your sense of accountability in this area will certainly help you stand out to hiring managers. Foss suggests that job-seeking leaders consider choosing from the following descriptive terms:

  • Budgeted
  • Cut costs
  • Drove growth
  • Invested
  • Negotiated
  • P&L Accountability
  • Reduced

Point out your knack for employee development

The capacity to inspire and urge others to hone in on their own particular talents is a must for those in leadership positions. Foss proposes the following words to “showcase your ability to rally others to pull off remarkable things”.

  • Advocated
  • Coached
  • Galvanized
  • Ignited
  • Mentored
  • Motivated
  • Shaped
  • Supported
  • United
  • Uplifted
  • We (rather than “I”)

Point out your capacity to influence others.

In addition to the skills listed above, effective leader must know how to influence or persuade others into agreeing with and implementing their ideas and suggestions. Therefore, it’s crucial that you convince a hiring manager of your ability to ensure that others will get on board with your strategies. Some terms that Foss recommends in this context are:

  • Convinced
  • Gained buy-in
  • Mobilized
  • Negotiated
  • Prompted
  • Propelled
  • Spurred
  • Won


Terms for Leadership - Businessman holding business card

In summary, we fully support Foss’ concept that using the right words under the right context can help you successfully convey the true span of your leadership talents.


Fred Coon, CEO 

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