by Matt Alderton | March 20, 2018
If you want to take your career to the next level, there's one thing you'll need to prove to the people in charge of hiring and/or promoting you: that you're leadership material.
"It's one thing to be good at tasks, projects, and areas of specialization, but if you're aspiring to manage teams, you simply can't stop there. You also have to position yourself as an inspiring, effective leader," explains The Muse contributor Jenny Foss.

It's easy to illustrate your leadership skills once you've got the job. It's much harder, however, to illustrate them beforehand.

To that end, Foss recommends loading your resume with strategic keywords that scream, "Leader!"

"There are hundreds of words and phrases that'll help give those who review your resume or speak to you in an interview an immediate hint that you've got leadership firepower," she says.

For example, try words that suggest you're a trailblazer, like "spearheaded," "pioneered," "transformed," or "optimized."

"Who gets the job?" Foss asks. "Partly, it's the [candidate] who comes across as a true innovator and powerhouse. It's the one who looks like he or she is going to take the ball (and the team) and run like hell (in the right direction)."

Words that show you can develop people also are effective, like "coached," "mentored," "motivated," or "united."

"If you're working to land a leadership role, a key aspect of your job will likely involve inspiring and developing teams and the people on those teams," Foss says. "Showcase your ability to rally others to pull off remarkable things."

Finally, show you're an influencer with words like "negotiated," "convinced," and "won."

"The best leaders … know how to get people to do what they want them to do, whether that's team members, stakeholders from other business areas or departments, or direct customers," Foss concludes. "You want to articulate very quickly that you're someone people stop and pay attention to."

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Questions, Comments, Suggestions?
Contact Successful Meetings Editor in Chief Vincent Alonzo with your "How To" ideas.