125 Positive Words and Adjectives To Describe Yourself in an Interview

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published April 14, 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Interviewers may ask you to describe yourself throughout the interview process to learn more about your life experience and personality traits. The words you use to describe yourself and your work experience during an interview can help human resources professionals decide if they want to move you forward in the hiring process. Choosing the right positive words to define yourself and your talents can help you make the best first impression with a hiring manager, recruiter or human resources professional.

In this article, we list words and adjectives you can use to describe yourself when communicating with a prospective employer and provide tips for using descriptive terms throughout the hiring process.

Related: Interview Techniques to Ace Your Next Interview

Why is it important to effectively describe yourself?

Making a strong first impression during an interview is an important step in your job search process. Describing yourself effectively in job applications or during an interview gives hiring managers a sense of who you are as a professional. Using accurate and engaging word choices to define your key traits also helps prospective employers determine if you fit into the company culture and whether you can thrive in the new workplace. It's also important to use positive language as you share your strengths with hiring professionals.

Planning how to describe yourself for an interview also makes it easier to answer common questions like "tell me about yourself," or "use four words to describe yourself." Even if a recruiter or hiring manager doesn't directly ask you to describe yourself, it's a good idea to share strong adjectives and terms that help the interviewer understand more about your skills, professional attitude and personality. Use descriptive words to share your most marketable traits, linking your skills to the prospective job. Take the opportunity to elaborate on each term as you describe yourself throughout the interview.

Related: 8 Types of Positive Verbal Communication for Interviewing

Words and adjectives to describe yourself professionally

The words you choose to define yourself and your abilities during an interview help create a lasting impression and give prospective employers the opportunity to assess your potential as an employee. Use positive terms to describe your best qualities, focusing on the most marketable professional words that related to the job. Choose words you think are closely related to important qualities and skills necessary for the open position. Below are lists of words from several categories that you can use to describe yourself to a potential employer during an interview:

30 words to describe your work ethic

How you approach your role in the workplace says a lot about who you are. Use these words during an interview to define how you complete your job tasks and responsibilities within an organization:

  • Dedicated

  • Curious

  • Persistent

  • Resilient

  • Disciplined

  • Practical

  • Ambitious

  • Tenacious

  • Resourceful

  • Organized

  • Bold

  • Open-minded

  • Respectful

  • Cooperative

  • Self-motivated

  • Adaptable

  • Reliable

  • Loyal

  • Inspiring

  • Hard-working

  • Proactive

  • Attentive

  • Thorough

  • Responsible

  • Insightful

  • Engaging

  • Committed

  • Focused

  • Punctual

  • Reflective

Related: Employers Virtually Interviewing Now

32 words to describe your attitude

Defining your professional attitude helps hiring managers learn how you interact with others in the workplace. Here is a long list of words to describe your work attitude as you speak with potential employers:

  • Confident

  • Kind

  • Empathetic

  • Patient

  • Considerate

  • Courageous

  • Genuine

  • Humble

  • Dynamic

  • Independent

  • Enthusiastic

  • Direct

  • Generous

  • Intelligent

  • Friendly

  • Witty

  • Passionate

  • Truthful

  • Straightforward

  • Sociable

  • Clever

  • Considerate

  • Joyful

  • Thoughtful

  • Easygoing

  • Sincere

  • Humorous

  • Tactful

  • Assertive

  • Self-reliant

  • Tolerant

  • Teachable

Related: Tips to Help You Improve Your Interviewing Skills

20 words to describe your professional abilities and experience

It's important to use descriptive words when discussing your past experience as a professional. Use any of the following words to talk about your expertise from previous jobs while interviewing:

  • Skilled

  • Professional

  • Experienced

  • Knowledgeable

  • Creative

  • Analytical

  • Detail-oriented

  • Adept

  • Communicative

  • Strategic

  • Entrepreneurial

  • Data-driven

  • Collaborative

  • Accomplished

  • Qualified

  • Precise

  • Proficient

  • Responsive

  • Technological

  • Visionary

Related: How To Succeed in a Panel Interview: Tips and Example Questions

43 words to describe your personality

Describing your personality lets prospective employers see beyond your work persona to get a glimpse of your intrinsic attitudes and how you relate to the world. Choose from the words below to give more details about your personal side during a job interview:

  • Adventurous

  • Happy

  • Pleasant

  • Introverted

  • Extroverted

  • Honest

  • Cheerful

  • Bright

  • Warmhearted

  • Intuitive

  • Optimistic

  • Helpful

  • Loving

  • Gentle

  • Energetic

  • Understanding

  • Vibrant

  • Artistic

  • Balanced

  • Imaginative

  • Approachable

  • Charismatic

  • Authentic

  • Wise

  • Fun

  • Original

  • Uplifting

  • Trustworthy

  • Outgoing

  • Upbeat

  • Inventive

  • Mature

  • Philosophical

  • Traditional

  • Studious

  • Pragmatic

  • Judicious

  • Meticulous

  • Meditative

  • Industrious

  • Goal-oriented

  • Fearless

  • Diplomatic

Related: The Best Questions To Ask In an Informational Interview

Tips for describing yourself in a professional situation

Leave your interviewer with a positive impression of your traits and professional expertise by choosing the right way to express yourself. Pick the strongest words to convey your fit for a prospective job while you interview for a new position. Here are some tips to help you choose terms to effectively describe yourself to a potential employer:

Show confidence

Boldly share details about yourself and your accomplishments with pride. During an interview, keep eye contact with your interviewer and maintain a strong, clear vocal tone to appear more confident. Balance honesty with self-assurance to share your most marketable skills, proving to potential employers that you can meet and exceed their expectations.

Choose unique words

Selecting interesting and unique words to describe yourself can make an impression on employers and help your interview stand out from other candidates. Choose less common words and avoid general terms that don't clearly describe your particular skills and personality. Try to use synonyms for overused terms to keep your word choice original.

Provide clear examples

As you use descriptive words, give examples of how these qualities made a positive impact in your previous roles. Explain how your traits helped a former company or co-worker. Give insight into why your qualities made an impact on the success of the organization. For example, if you describe yourself as resourceful, share a story about a time when you created a presentation for a client in an hour by piecing together information from a previous slideshow for another customer. If you can, link terms to concrete evidence like an increased sales percentage or numeric lead volume.

Match terms

Prepare for an interview by reviewing your resume and cover letter, paying attention to the descriptive words listed under your summary, skills and experience sections. Use some of the same words that appear in your resume and cover letter to remind your interviewer about your professional history. An interview gives you the opportunity to share more details about your professional accomplishments to convince a potential employer you are the right candidate to fill the position. Successfully completing an interview takes a combination of preparation and quick thinking to connect with your interviewer and answer questions clearly.

Choose your words strategically

Describe yourself with terms that match the job description. Look for descriptive keywords that fit your skill set and personality traits. Employers often list specific qualities they feel best match the capabilities of the potential employee or ones that line up with job responsibilities within the role. Reflect on the words that match your personality and professional attitudes the best, then insert these terms into your professional documents and mention them during your interview.

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