Growth Trends for Related Jobs

How to Describe Self-Management Skills on a Resume

careertrend article image
Jirapong Manustrong/iStock/GettyImages

A resume is your first opportunity to make a good impression with a prospective employer. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, employers typically spend as little as 30 seconds to determine whether a resume warrants further consideration. To make each second count, you need to ensure your resume includes the necessary information delivered in the appropriate manner. In addition to employment history and education, you should emphasize self-management skills. These skills, which are sometimes referred to as personality traits, help a prospective employer identify the type of employee you are and how well you will fit into an organization.

Compile a list of your previous jobs and the duties and responsibilities related to each job. Also, create a list of volunteer activities, major accomplishments and educational achievements. Identify the self-management skills associated with job duty and responsibility noting which skills you practiced repeatedly. Examples of self-management skills include reliability, punctuality, a positive attitude and the ability to follow instructions.

Identify three to five of your self-management skills that are relevant to the job for which you are applying. Creating an attention-grabbing resume often hinges on the compatibility of your skills and the job’s requirements. To locate the skills required for a specific job, read the job description or visit the Department of Labor’s Career Guide to Industries.

While it is acceptable to list the self-management skills you possess, like listing computer skills or office equipment experience, you can also provide brief examples illustrating how certain skills apply to you. If you choose to offer examples, select your top three self-management skills and write a sentence for each that includes the skill and an explanation showing how you utilized this skill in the past.

Placement of your self-management skills list or examples depends on the resume format you select. If you choose a chronological format, insert your self-management skills information in your qualifications summary, which is similar to an objective. If you choose a functional format, insert your self-management skills information under the appropriate skill heading.

Review your resume upon completion, including your statements relating to self-management skills for accuracy, relevance and spelling.


Ashlyn Etree was all business as a PR professional for 10 years, but she loves rolling up her sleeves volunteering at animal rescues. She writes for various publications, specializing in business, career and pet-related content. Etree earned a Bachelor of Arts in communications from the University of Central Florida.

Photo Credits

Jirapong Manustrong/iStock/GettyImages