Is Resume Fluff Preventing You from Landing Interviews?

resume fluff

Marshmallow fluff is a pretty delectable treat. Simply sweet and adds height and volume to a scrumptious ice cream sundae…

However, you do not want fluff in your resume. Keep it strictly for your ice cream sundaes.

How do you know if you have fluff in your resume?

To start, if you are listing tasks, initiatives or areas of responsibility on your resume, but you do not have accomplishments corresponding to the task, initiative or responsibility, then you may be engaging in fluff.

Here is an example:

If a Program Director at a middle school board has a resume bullet that states: “Created initiative to employ cutting-edge teaching programs for the learning disabled,” I would want to know did the program get deployed? For how many students? What are the results of the program being implemented? At what cost? What was the direct and perceived benefit of the program being executed? Answers to these questions should be part of the resume bullet. 

If the person cannot answer these questions, and they simply wrote an initiative but never put it in place, well, my friends, that is resume fluff.


I would much prefer this resume bullet to read something like, “ Created and executed a $96,000 teaching curriculum that caters to the 72 children requiring custom learning disabled teaching that enabled students to be mainstreamed 45% faster into certain subjects and programming.” This second statement tells me the program was implemented and it was deemed a success.

Now I give everyone the benefit of the doubt. Resumes and LinkedIn profiles were written in more of a task-driven / job responsibility format about 5-10 years ago. Think job description with your name on the top. 

So just because you have a fluffy document, doesn’t mean you are automatically fluffy… If your document is dated, and you have not updated it in a while, you might be given the benefit of the doubt by some if you work for good companies and have progression. 

(However, I would not leave that to chance…get your documents updated).

But if you are given that benefit of the doubt, you need to be able to answer the questions on how well you did those functions you have listed on your resume. 

Today’s career documents focus on achievements.

How well did you do at that task, initiative, or area of responsibility? Simply doing it or being accountable for it is not enough to set you apart or tell me that you did it well.

I want to know how well you did at that function. Did you make money, save money, streamline a process, positively contribute to the culture of your organization or mitigate risk? 

These answers tell me if you did it well…and I can compare you to other candidates to see how did it best and most relevantly to what I need as an employer.

No fluff.

At least not on your resume… but on that chocolate coconut milk ice cream sundae with hot fudge, walnuts and sprinkles? Oh my… throw on the marshmallow fluff…

So while I dream about my sundae, I recommend you register for my No-Cost How to Design a Powerful Resume to Land Six-Figure Interviews and Get the Offer! training session and see before and after examples of actual resumes that have no fluff….

We show you multiple examples of what no-fluff resumes look like that landed interviews.

Don’t miss it. Here is where you can grab your seat:

See you there…


Be well!


Daily Career Tips


Landing your next job doesn't have to be an overwhelming, frustrating or time-sucking task. Get daily tips on how to find the position you deserve,  delivered right to your inbox:

  • The #1 addition every resume needs in 2023 and beyond.
  • How to get prepared for a job change even if you like the job you have.
  • How to handle a chaotic job market and where to focus your job-seeking efforts (hint, it’s not the job boards).
  • Where to find great jobs without submitting 500 meaningless job applications.
  • How to slice through the Applicant Tracking System B.S. and land a 6- figure role you love.
  • How to track down the “unpublished job market” and have your pick of the best jobs out there.
  • How to write a resume that will hit hiring managers right between the eyes and have them scrambling to book your interview.
  • How to get up to speed with your online branding and write a LinkedIn profile that positions you as the #1 expert in your field.
  • How to approach job seeking with the “human touch” so you can keep the bots at bay.
  • And finally, access to our 4-stage META Job Landing system we’ve used with thousands of job seekers just like you.

About Lisa

Lisa Rangel and The Chameleon Team are the only executive resume writing, LinkedIn profile development, and job landing consultancy who has been hired by LinkedIn and recognized by Forbes. Our 4-Stage META Job Landing System stems from decades of corporate and executive recruiting experience to position you to land your next 6 or 7-figure role faster.


Looking for an article on a particular topic? Use the search below...