Key strengths to highlight on your resume (with 30 examples)

Key strengths to highlight on your resume (with 30 examples)
JobStreet content teamupdated on 03 November, 2023

Want to make a positive impression on potential employers before they even meet you? A well-crafted resume plays a crucial role. Highlighting key strengths in your resume helps you stand out from other candidates. 

According to NACE’s Job Outlook 2023 report, 60% of employers reviewing resumes are looking for skills (instead of grades and awards) that show applicants’ ability to problem-solve and work with teams.

This article will explore 30 unique strengths you can showcase on your resume. We'll also provide key examples of strengths to guide you in your job search process.

Understanding the importance of a well-crafted resume

A well-crafted resume is your professional marketing tool. It presents your qualifications, skills, and experiences to potential employers. It also shows why you are the best fit for a particular role. A list of strengths on your resume is vital. It allows employers to identify the value you can bring to their organisation.

Identifying your strengths (and weaknesses)

Before writing your resume, reflect on your personal and professional traits.

Self-awareness of your strengths and weaknesses is essential in your search for your next role and to have a thriving career. Have you always been solutions-oriented? Do you consider yourself a hard worker? Have you become more open to handling responsibility?

Look back on the positive experiences you've had both at work and in your personal milestones. It can show you personal traits or new skills. Consider the following tips below on how to identify your strengths.

Reflecting on your personal strengths

man reflecting on strengths

Personal strengths are your natural talents and abilities developed over time. They contribute to your personal growth and well-being.

Think about how you can apply your personal skills to the workplace. For example, being creative can mean coming up with innovative ideas. Are you also known to take charge and lead others? Your creativity and leadership qualities can apply in work situations.

Being aware of your strengths will help in your career development. It's best to assess how they contribute to your desired role by looking at the job description.

Analysing your professional strengths

Professional strengths are the skills and qualities relevant to your career and past work performance. They show your expertise and ability to excel in a specific role.

Identifying your strengths can be challenging. You can either be your worst critic or biggest fan. An outside perspective can help.

Look back at your past work performance evaluations. Did your previous supervisor commend you for your project management ability? Have your teammates always relied on you for written communication?

Knowing your professional strengths can contribute to your professional success. It helps you recognise the work environment you thrive in. It also enables you to use those strengths to contribute to an organisation.

30 examples of strengths that hiring managers are looking for

Now, let's explore 30 strengths you can include on your resume. As you read on, think about which of these strengths match your own. We’ve categorised these strengths into five key areas:

Communication skills

  1. Verbal communication: Expressing ideas and information through spoken words.

    ⁠⁠Why this skill is important: It enables seamless interaction with colleagues and clients.

    ⁠⁠Example of demonstrating verbal communication skills:
    ⁠Delivering persuasive sales presentations to clients, resulting in a 20% increase in sales.
  2. Written communication: Conveying information clearly through written documents.

    ⁠Why this skill is important: It's essential for creating professional emails, reports, and other written materials.

    ⁠Example of showcasing writing skills:
    ⁠Developing comprehensive user manuals that received positive feedback from customers.
  3. Active listening: Paying attention to others, understanding perspectives, and responding appropriately.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠It fosters collaboration, builds rapport, and ensures customer satisfaction.

    ⁠Example of highlighting active listening:
    ⁠You resolve customer inquiries by listening to their concerns. You repeat critical points for clarity. You can also provide accurate solutions tailored to their needs.
  4. Negotiation: The ability to reach agreements that meet both parties' interests.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠It's valuable in sales, conflict resolution, and contract negotiations.

    Example featuring negotiation skills:
    ⁠Successfully negotiating pricing and terms with vendors, resulting in 15% cost savings without compromising quality.
  5. Public speaking: Delivering engaging and informative presentations to large audiences.

    Why this skill is important:
    ⁠It's valuable in leadership roles and positions that need you to conduct training sessions.

    ⁠Example of public speaking as a strength:
    ⁠Conducting impactful training sessions for new employees that achieve effective knowledge transfer and engagement.

    ⁠Interpersonal skills
  6. Teamwork: Collaborating with colleagues to achieve common goals.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Strong teamwork ability contributes to a positive work environment. It also helps with successful project outcomes.

    ⁠Example of teamwork as a strength:
    ⁠Participating in cross-functional teams, fostering open communication, and achieving project milestones.
  7. Empathy: Understanding and addressing the emotions and needs of others.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Empathy enhances customer satisfaction and helps foster positive relationships with colleagues.

    ⁠Example of showcasing empathy:
    ⁠Resolving customer complaints and ensuring a satisfactory resolution.
  8. Conflict resolution: Managing and resolving conflicts in a constructive and diplomatic manner.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Conflict resolution skills promote a harmonious work environment, preventing smaller issues from escalating.

    ⁠Example of demonstrating conflict resolution:
    ⁠Mediating conflicts between team members. Practising active listening to varied perspectives and facilitating a beneficial resolution.
  9. Cultural competence: Effectively interacting and collaborating with individuals from diverse backgrounds.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠It promotes inclusivity, respect, and effective communication in multicultural settings.

    ⁠Example of cultural competence as a strength:
    ⁠Collaborating with international colleagues and adapting to cultural nuances, to adopt appropriate communication styles.
  10. Networking: Building and nurturing professional relationships to expand opportunities.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Networking skills contribute to career growth, business development, and access to new opportunities.

    ⁠Example of showcasing networking skills:
    ⁠Participating in industry events to establish meaningful connections. You can leverage your network for career advancement.

    Organisational skills
  11. Time management: Efficiently managing time and prioritising tasks to meet deadlines.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Your ability to manage your time and your team ensures productivity and effective task completion.

    ⁠Example of time management as a strength:
    ⁠Meeting project deadlines by creating detailed schedules, setting priorities, and managing resources.
  12. Attention to detail: Thoroughly completing tasks with precision.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Being detail-oriented is critical for quality control. It prevents errors from happening and produces accurate work.
    ⁠Example of demonstrating attention to detail:
    ⁠Conducting comprehensive quality checks on deliverables. You identify and rectify errors before final submission.
  13. Project management: Planning, organising, and executing successful projects to achieve desired outcomes.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠It ensures efficient project delivery within scope, budget, and timeline.

    ⁠Example of project management as a strength:
    ⁠Leading cross-functional project teams, setting clear objectives, and coordinating tasks to achieve project milestones.
  14. Multitasking: Handling many tasks simultaneously.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Multitasking enables efficient workflow management and timely task completion.

    ⁠Example of multitasking as a strength:
    ⁠Managing different client accounts, prioritising tasks, and meeting deadlines for each project.
  15. Planning: Developing strategic plans and organising resources to achieve goals.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠It ensures organised approaches to achieve desired outcomes.

    ⁠Example of showcasing planning skills:
    ⁠Developing comprehensive marketing plans for successful campaign execution. Being able to outline key activities, timelines, and resources needed.

    ⁠Problem-solving skills
  16. Critical thinking skills: Analysing information, evaluating options, and making informed decisions.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠It enables effective problem-solving and strategic decision-making.

    ⁠Example of highlighting critical thinking:
    ⁠Able to analyse complex problems dealing with customer issues you've encountered, explore alternative solutions, and apply effective problem-solving strategies.
  17. Decision making: Assessing options and making sound judgments based on available information.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Strong decision-making skills ensure efficient problem-resolution and effective leadership.

    ⁠Example of showcasing decision-making:
    ⁠Making timely and well-informed decisions in high-pressure situations, resulting in positive outcomes and minimal risks.
  18. Creativity: Coming up with innovative ideas and approaches to overcome challenges.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠It fosters innovation and drives process improvement. It can also enhance your problem-solving abilities.

    ⁠Example of creativity as a strength:
    ⁠Developing unique marketing campaigns. Include how it captures the attention of your target audience and increases brand visibility.
  19. Analytical skills: Collecting, interpreting, and analysing data to derive meaningful insights.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠It enables data-driven decision-making and strategic planning. Companies value analytics expertise as it helps with solving problems based on data.

    ⁠Example of demonstrating analytical skills:
    ⁠Conducting comprehensive market research, analysing data trends, and presenting actionable insights for business growth.
  20. Innovation: Identifying opportunities and implementing creative solutions.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Innovation drives continuous improvement and enhances competitiveness. It also fosters business growth.

    ⁠Example of innovation as a strength:
    ⁠Introducing new processes that improved operational efficiency and reduced costs. Citing a specific percentage helps.

    ⁠Leadership Skills
  21. Delegation: Assigning tasks and responsibilities to the right team or staff members.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Delegating tasks enhances productivity, promotes teamwork, and empowers team members.

    ⁠Example of delegation as a strength:
    ⁠Assigning tasks based on their strengths. You should also showcase your ability to provide clear instructions for successful task completion.
  22. Motivation: Inspiring and motivating your team to achieve their best performance.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Motivational skills foster employee engagement, productivity, and positive work culture.

    ⁠Example of showcasing motivation:
    ⁠Energising your department in different ways. Providing regular recognition and constructive feedback while facilitating their professional growth.
  23. Mentorship: Guiding and supporting your staff in personal and professional development.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Mentorship ability contributes to employee growth, knowledge transfer, and talent retention. Often, your staff will come to you for career advice and seek guidance regarding the company's standards.

    ⁠Example of demonstrating mentorship skills:
    ⁠Mentoring new hires, providing guidance, sharing industry insights, and fostering their professional development.
  24. Strategic planning: Developing long-term strategies to achieve organisational goals.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Strategic planning aligns business objectives, promotes growth, and ensures future success.

    ⁠Example of strategic planning as a strength:
    ⁠Leading the development of a five-year business plan. Provide specific results if there's an increase in market share, for example.
  25. Change management: Guiding and leading teams through organisational change.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Change management skills promote smooth transitions. This means you get to minimise resistance and maximise adoption.

    ⁠Example of showcasing change management:
    ⁠Leading teams through company-wide software implementation, for example. Show how it ensures minimal disruption and high user adoption rates.

    ⁠Technical Skills
  26. Computer literacy: High proficiency in various computer software and applications.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Computer literacy is essential in today's digital world. It makes for efficient work processes and effective communication.

    ⁠Example of computer literacy as a strength:
    ⁠Demonstrating advanced skills in Microsoft Office Suite to streamline data analysis and reporting.
  27. Data analysis: Analysing and interpreting data to derive meaningful insights.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Data analysis skills enable informed decision-making and identification of business trends.

    ⁠Example of demonstrating data analysis skills:
    ⁠Utilising data visualisation tools and statistical analysis techniques. Include how it helped your company identify cost-saving opportunities and improve operational efficiency.
  28. Social media management: Managing and leveraging social media platforms for marketing.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Social media management skills drive brand awareness, engagement, and customer acquisition.

    ⁠Example of social media management as a strength:
    ⁠Growing social media followers by 50% through strategic content planning, audience targeting, and engagement strategies.
  29. Programming: Proficiency in programming languages and coding.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Programming and computer skills are valuable in software development, data analysis, and automation.

    ⁠Example of showcasing programming skills:
    ⁠Developing a custom web application using HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, which resulted in improved user experience and streamlined processes.
  30. Graphic design: Proficiency in graphic design software and creating visually appealing designs.

    ⁠Why this skill is important:
    ⁠Graphic design skills enhance brand identity, marketing materials, and user interface design.

    ⁠Example of graphic design as a strength:
    ⁠Creating stunning marketing collaterals that communicate brand messaging and increase customer engagement.

How to effectively showcase your strengths (and get that job interview)

man and woman identifying strengths on resume

After you have identified your strengths, you must showcase them on your resume. Here are some tips on how to do it:

  • Integrate strengths into your resume's professional summary. In your professional summary, highlight a few strengths that are most relevant to the role you're applying for.
  • Use concise language. A hiring manager goes through many resumes of job seekers. Make it easy for them to remember yours. Provide good examples that show how you've utilised those strengths in previous roles.
  • List strengths in a dedicated skills section. Create a dedicated skills section on your resume where you can list your strengths. Include soft skills and hard skills.
  • Organise them in bullet points and use bold formatting to draw attention to each. Ensure that the listed strengths align with the job posting. Remember to emphasise the skills most relevant to the position.
  • Highlight strengths in your work experience section. Include key examples of strengths by showing how you've utilised them to achieve success. Describe their impact on project outcomes, team collaboration, or customer satisfaction.
  • Show strengths in your achievements. Include actual results that show the application of your strengths. Quantify your accomplishments whenever possible to provide a clear understanding of your contributions.

Tailor your strengths to different job types

Customise your strengths according to the position you're applying for to make your resume more targeted. It's a practice on how detail-oriented you can be. It also shows a proactive attitude when it comes to the job search process.

This doesn't mean you should make up examples of key strengths. You have to angle and reword your key strengths differently based on different job categories.

How to customise your strengths for tech roles

Emphasise strengths such as technical expertise, analytical abilities, and adaptability to new technologies. Highlight relevant programming languages, software applications, and certifications that show your technical skills.

The essential strengths of sales & marketing roles

Your resume highlights should include strengths in communication, negotiation, relationship building, and persuasion. Include achievements related to sales targets, lead generation, customer acquisition, and marketing campaigns.

What strengths to present for healthcare positions

Key strengths to showcase can include empathy and paying attention to small details. Including any related awards, relevant certifications, and patient care will give you an edge.

List of strengths for work in education

For roles in the education sector, emphasise strengths in leadership and communication. Also, include how well you do in curriculum development and classroom management.

Keep your examples to appropriate teaching methods and student engagement strategies. Don’t forget to cite any accolades received for innovative teaching practices.

What strengths to showcase for creative professions

Put the spotlight on creativity, artistic vision, and attention to detail. If needed in the role, proficiency in relevant design software is a good addition. Provide a portfolio of your creative work to show your skills and artistic abilities.

Common mistakes to avoid when listing strengths

When highlighting your strengths on a resume, avoid these mistakes that can undermine your credibility.

Using a generic list of strengths

One common mistake is listing generic strengths not specific to the role or industry. Generic strengths like "hardworking" or "team player" are overused. They also don't provide any meaningful information about your qualifications.

If you want to get nab job interviews in your job search, focus on specific strengths that align with the position's requirements. Ask yourself, for example, if putting "highly motivated" or "have a growth mindset" can set you apart from the other job candidates responding to the job ad.

Overstating your abilities just to get that job interview

While it's essential to give a list of strengths, it's also important to be honest and realistic.

Don't exaggerate. Don't overstate your abilities. Both can lead to a misalignment between your stated strengths and actual performance. This can disappoint both you and your potential employer. If you think your resume might not do you justice, you can write a cover letter that further provides specifics to your resume strengths.

Not providing examples to support your list of strengths

Providing generic examples of strengths without citing evidence to support them will seem empty. Employers want to see tangible proof of your strengths in action.

When putting in your resume key strengths, always back it up. How many people did you manage in your team? How much were you able to increase your company's market share? Good examples from your work experience or achievements are necessary. It shows your ability to apply those strengths in professional situations.

Failing to customise strengths for each job description

Every application is unique. Thus, the most relevant strengths may vary depending on the role and company. Avoid the mistake of using the same set of strengths for every application.

Take the time to review the job posting. Then, tailor your strengths to align with the position's specific requirements. Yes, it requires extra effort. But it can also spell the difference between getting called for a job interview or not.


Highlighting your strengths on your resume is essential to make a strong impression on potential employers.

By identifying and showcasing your strengths, you can present solid qualifications from the start to get those job interviews. This helps you stand out from other candidates. It also increases your chances of securing the desired position.

What do you do first? You have to first reflect on your personal and professional strengths. Align them with the requirements and qualifications of the role when you write your resume. It's also necessary to provide good examples to support those strengths.

Tailor them to different job types. You can emphasise the ones most relevant to the position you're applying for. Avoid listing generic strengths without any specifics. Neither overstate your abilities nor fail to provide evidence for your strengths.

By presenting a well-crafted resume that highlights your strengths, you can show potential employers why you're the ideal candidate for the role.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

  1. Should I use the same strengths for every application?
    ⁠It's advisable to tailor your strengths to each application. Review the job listing carefully. Identify the key skills and qualities sought by the employer. Once that's done, select the strengths that align with the requirements of the specific role. Make sure to emphasise those in your resume.
  2. How many strengths should I list on my resume?
    ⁠There is no fixed number of strengths to list on your resume. Focus on quality over quantity. Select a few strengths most relevant to the position and provide specific examples to illustrate them. Aim for a concise and impactful presentation of your strengths.
  3. What if my strengths aren't related to the position I'm applying for?
    ⁠Even if a particular strength is unrelated to the job, it can still be valuable. Check if it demonstrates transferable skills or qualities. 

    ⁠For example, you have excellent writing ability, but you're not applying for a writing position. Find ways to connect that strength to the requirements of the role. Will you need to create persuasive presentations? Do you have to provide a recap to meetings with clients? 
    ⁠Check how your strength can contribute to your effectiveness as an employee. It's best to keep a positive attitude during your employment search.
  4. How can I prove the strengths I list on my resume?
    ⁠To prove your strengths, cite specific examples of how you have applied them in previous roles or situations. Were you able to use your negotiation ability to get a better contract with vendors in your last job? How much did you save the company?
    ⁠Use quantifiable achievements and success stories. Positive feedback from supervisors or clients also shows the impact of your strengths.
  5. Can my hobbies and interests indicate my strengths?
    ⁠Your hobbies and interests can provide insights into your personal qualities. Remember, though, that they should be relevant and aligned with the job requirements. Applying for a teamwork-oriented role? You can mention a team sport you excel in if it demonstrates that you're a team player and can collaborate.

Browse top search terms

Did you know many candidates preparing a resume also research their industry by exploring top search terms?
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