So I was working on my resume, but it literally took me two hours to come up with a succinct phrase for "work well under pressure".

So far I could think of phrases like " pressure performer " or "multi-tasker" or something like these.

But they are not that satisfying right? Does anyone have any suggestions?

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    As someone who has read lots of resumes, "works well under pressure" works for me. It is succinct enough. Don't make me puzzle out what you mean. I would have no idea what "pressure performer" meant and multi-tasker is not what you mean. – ab2 Feb 4 '16 at 4:02
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    @ab2 - I know I do it too sometimes, but please avoid answering in comments. You'd have +20 already! – Mazura Feb 4 '16 at 6:03
  • cool, calm, and collected. – CDM Feb 4 '16 at 10:30
  • This is known as an "expert" -- X is the unknown factor, and "spurt" is a drip under pressure. – Hot Licks Apr 5 at 12:29

As someone who has read a lot of resumes, works well under pressure works for me.

It is succinct and clear.

I would not know what you meant by "Pressure performer"; I would find that term in a resume irritating. My immediate picture when I first saw it in your question was of a dancer in a hyperbaric chamber.

A multitasker may or may not be able to work well under pressure; the ability to do several things at the same time is no guarantee that the person will not fall apart under pressure.

If you want to add something to the "works well under pressure", say "meets deadlines".

(You are right to agonize over your resume.)

  • Actually, I think you're right - "works well under pressure" is the best answer. – David Blomstrom Feb 5 '16 at 3:37

collected, level-headed, established, persevering, tenacious, unflinching, unshakable; you could also explore some synonyms of these words.

Personally, I think "pressure performer" doesn't sound right, while multi-tasking means something else entirely - the ability to focus on several tasks at once, with no reference to pressure.

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    Hi, David. If you don't mind...Some of the words in your post are not broadly used in resume. English Language and Usage is not a Yahoo-Answer type of forum. It wants to differentiate it from other English forums. I don't think it is appropriate to copy an answer from Yahoo. It might be frowned upon by some existing users. Please select a few words which you think fit the bill and explain why they are what the Original Poster is looking for with dictionary definitions. – user140086 Feb 4 '16 at 4:17

According to vocabulary.com, aplomb is defined as composure under pressure/stress. They give the following definition

Aplomb is the ultimate test for cool: grace under pressure. Use aplomb to show great restraint under even the most trying circumstances. In retail, it's always a good idea to handle the angry customers with aplomb.

Also, according to WordNet 3.1, aplomb means

Assuredness, cool, poise, sang-froid (great coolness and composure under strain) "keep your cool"

I'm not sure it's the best choice for your CV (it's not very common), but it's a nice word, notwithstanding.


This is the most overlooked word you’re describing: “equanimity,” which means steadiness of mind under stress.

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    We prefer answers that quote and link to authoritative sources, like dictionaries. – Scott Apr 10 '18 at 20:19
  • Just my opinion, but, in business, rather than forum, technical or legal jargon, or informal discussions, I believe it is best to stick to simple, easy, words that would be understood by people that potentially have English as a second language. works well under pressure is reasonably clear, but equanimity is not an everyday word that everyone would be expected to know. In fact, I'd have had to look it up myself. +1 in general use then, but not for business/resume use. – Italian Philosopher Aug 10 '18 at 21:31

An idiomatic expression would be to keep a cool head

To maintain a calm demeanor and think clearly in a difficult, stressful, or troubling situation

[The Free Dictionary]

Personal Point of View

If you are wondering if using idioms in resumes is informal, I have used idioms and phrases while creating my own resume and being in IT, I do review quite a few resumes. I prefer people who can include figurative sense in their write-ups. The ability to use idiomatic expressions shows your fluency and command of the language.


imperturbable TFD

Unshakably calm and collected

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