As 2012 counts down we start to see some interesting and entertaining ‘year in review’-type lists. One of our favourites is LinkedIn’s Buzzwords list! Scouring the 187 million profiles of its members, LinkedIn compiles this annual list of the most (over)used professional buzzwords. View last year’s list here.

For the second year in a row, taking out the top spot is…… Creative!

Rounding out the U.S. top 10 is: Organizational, Effective, Motivated, Extensive experience, Track record, Innovative, Responsible, Analytical, Problem solving.


Around the world it’s a fairly similar story, worldwide number 1’s were:

  • Australia: Creative
  • Brazil: Experimental
  • Canada: Creative
  • Egypt: Multinational
  • France: Responsible
  • Germany: Creative
  • India: Effective
  • Indonesia: Multinational
  • Italy: Responsible
  • Malaysia: Motivated
  • Netherlands: Creative
  • New Zealand: Creative
  • Saudi Arabia: Motivated
  • Singapore: Creative
  • South Africa: Motivated
  • Spain: Specialized
  • Sweden: Creative
  • Switzerland: Analytical
  • United Arab Emirates: Motivated
  • United Kingdom: Motivated


LinkedIn noted some of the staples on the list, as well as new entries and a couple that were bumped out of the Top 10.

As was the case last year, “creative”, “organizational”, “effective” are in the top three. This year though, more members this year described themselves as “responsible” and “analytical”, which made an appearance on our ranking for the first time. As a result, “dynamic” and “communication skills” got knocked off the list. “Motivated” is now ranked higher than “extensive experience” which was the top buzzword in 2010.

Tips for a better buzzword-free profile:

  • Go through your profile and cleanse it of any unnecessary buzzwords
  • Opt for simple language and tangible results – e.g. Increased online sales revenue by 13%
  • Rid your headline of any buzzwords such as ‘Sales Ninja’ or ‘Marketing Guru’
  • Make sure you have Recommendations and Endorsed Skills – who needs buzzwords when others are creating buzz about you!