Resume Synonyms for Drive

Want another word for Drive to use on your resume? Our team's compiled the most effective action verbs and synonyms you can use instead of the overused resume phrase, "Drive".

Kimberley Tyler Smith Author Photo
Compiled by: Kimberley Tyler-Smith
Senior Hiring Manager
20+ Years of Experience

When recruiters look at your resume, they're looking for a sense of your work history, career trajectory, and professional growth. However, they also want to see evidence of your ability to perform the job you're applying for—and that's where the verb 'drive' comes into play. This word shows that you're self-motivated and can get things done without much direction.

The verb 'drive' is the perfect word to describe what you do in your job—making things happen. Despite this, it's important to use synonyms as much as possible because this term has a lot of meanings that can often be misinterpreted. In your resume, you want to be sure that you use the most appropriate word for each situation. Moreover, when writing about past experiences, it's best to use the past tense of the verb.

Instead, use power verbs like 'motivated' or 'propelled.' These words have similar meanings but don't carry the same connotations that 'drive' does. You could also use words like 'directed,' which can mean both leading and guiding someone or something.

The more descriptive you can make your resume, the better chance you have at standing out from other candidates applying for the same position.

I've compiled some synonyms you can use instead of Drive on your resume, followed by real examples I've written for clients (feel free to use them!).

Resume Synonyms for Drive:

  • Ran
  • Propelled
  • Directed
  • Impelled
  • Launched
  • Stimulated
  • Motivated
  • Initiated
  • Piloted
  • Navigated
  • Commanded
  • Controlled
  • Commissioned
  • Expedited
  • Ordered
  • Instructed
  • Compelled
  • Authorized
  • Empowered
  • Promoted

How to replace Drive with a stronger action verb:

Let's look at examples of how you can remove and replace the overused phrase, Drive, with a stronger synonym and alternative that is more effective at highlighting your achievements.

Before: Weak example using Drive

Drive down development costs and time spent for the company

After: Using a stronger synonymReduced the time spent on development by 73% by creating maintainable reusable components. .

Replacing Drive with Spearheaded

Before: Drive

Drive the creation of new marketing campaigns.

After: SpearheadedSpearheaded the development of fresh marketing campaigns which led to a 45% increase in brand visibility in just 6 months.

I replaced 'Drive' with 'Spearheaded' to better depict the leading role the applicant had. I also quantified the results to demonstrate the effectiveness and impact of the marketing campaigns.

Tip: I've prepared a ton of additional examples for you to give you inspiration. Please click on any of the following to expand and see real examples of how I've rewritten client bullet points.

How to use these synonyms in practice

We've put together an infographic to give you more examples of how to put this into practice. Note the use of strong action verbs instead of words like Drive.

More resume bullet point samples that use strong synonyms

How to use Developed on a resume:

Developed a prototype to identify key influencers on Twitter using clustering techniques over 100,000 data points in Python.

How to use Designed, on a resume:

Designed, executed, and optimized digital marketing campaign on Google's AdWords for $20B CPG company, yielding 20% ROI improvements.

How to use Analyzed on a resume:

Analyzed fundamental growth drivers via top-down (macro/sector trends, competition) and bottom-up (growth strategy, revenue forecast, cost allocation) approaches, and analysis of senior management and shareholding structure..

How to use Conducted on a resume:

Conducted market analysis and competitor benchmarking analysis to evaluate the distribution strategy of luxury fashion brand; summarized findings in comprehensive report to client.

How to use Performed on a resume:

Performed a gap analysis by conducting a current state assessment to understand the inefficiencies associated with the existing manual business process.

How to use Created on a resume:

Created content and copy for social media channels (Twitter, Facebook and Instagram) and email newsletter; assessed customer response to create targeted messaging and inform future content; social media following grew 125%+ organically.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is another word for Drive on a resume?

You can say Ran, Motivated or Propelled instead of Drive.

What are other words for Drive on a resume?

Words like Drive are overused on resumes. Instead, you should use other phrases like Controlled, Ran, Instructed, Stimulated, Commissioned or Launched.

Get a free resume review: Find out if your action verbs are strong enough.

If you haven't yet, you should probably use the free tool below that's designed to help you update your existing resume. You'll also find out if your resume can be read by resume screeners, as well as if it passes key criteria recruiters look for. Just upload your resume below to start.

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