The English language is filled with words that sound and look almost the same but have quite different meanings. Here are a few you want to watch out for.
- Prospective means “happening in the future.” Perspective means “a point of view.” So you are most likely to have a new perspective on a company’s problems—not a prospective.
- Compliment means “a polite expression of admiration or praise.” Complement means “something that completes or brings to perfection.” So you are most likely to add skills that complement ones you already have—not compliment.
- Insure, assure, and ensure overlap in certain meanings. But most people use insure in the sense of “providing compensation after damage”; assure in the sense of “telling someone something positive to dispel their doubts”; and ensure in the sense of “making certain something will happen.” So you are most likely to ensure that the right people are chosen for a team—not insure or assure.
- Forward means “toward the front.” Foreword means “a short introduction to a book.” So you are most likely to move a company’s goals forward—not foreword (“foreward” is simply wrong).
- SaaS, IoT, iOS, IaaS—be very careful when using technical abbreviations like these. saas, iOT, IoS, and IAS are wrong or mean something else entirely. Define each abbreviation or acronym first – using both the acronym and spelled out version helps with Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) and being found in searches.
- Principle means “a rule of action or conduct.” Principal means “most important or influential.” So if you are talking about the leader of a firm or school, you want principal. Principal is also the right word for discussing the principal of a loan. If you are talking about the way you approach a job or situation, then you act in accordance with your principles.
- APAC, APJ, APSG, CALA, CEMA, EMEA, IMEA, SEMEA, and similar abbreviations for worldwide regions have very distinct meanings. Make sure you are using the right acronym and always define it first.
- Corps means “a subdivision in the army.” Corpse means “a dead body.” Corp. is the abbreviation for “corporation.” So you are most likely to talk about Samsung C&T Corp. or the US Marine Corps—not Samsung C&T Corpse or US Marine Corp.
Many people find themselves mixing up similar sounding words and acronyms in English. Part of my job as a professional resume writer is to make sure the right word or acronym is in the right place. Contact me today for help with your resume.