Hobbies and Interests for Your Resume to Impress Any Interviewer

Do The Recruiters Have to Know You Personally?

Some people believe a professional resume is no place to mention your interests and hobbies, or an eligible candidate does not waste his/her time on trivial info and jibber-jabber! Technically, such an opinion may sound reasonable at first, but if you think about it, recruiters in each company are not hiring robots to do the preplanned roles. They are hiring people, and people have different personalities that come with the knowledge, skills and experiences a person might withhold. 

Based on a recent study in Human Resource Management, the average cost of hiring a new recruit is over $4,000. Assume there is no HR department to oversee the recruitment process. In that case, the company may employ a few people before finding the right person for the job. This is highly inconvenient considering how expensive and time-consuming the process would be. As a result, companies have developed a standard protocol for hiring new recruits based on their own specific values and needs. 

The recruiters need to know that your experience and skills are aligned with the company, but it is also vital for them to see that you match their workplace culture. Hence, they want to know you on a personal and professional level. It would be a good idea to include some of your interests and hobbies as they:

  1. Demonstrate your personality. Listing your hobbies and interests can give the employer an insight into your character, which can be just as important as your qualifications and experience. It can demonstrate that you are a well-rounded individual with diverse interests, which can help you to stand out from other candidates.
  2. Show your passion and enthusiasm. Your hobbies and interests can also show your love and spirit for certain things. For example, listing that you enjoy playing sports can show that you are committed, driven, and dedicated to achieving your goals.
  3. Highlight your skills Many hobbies and interests can showcase valuable skills in the workplace. For example, if you enjoy photography, it can demonstrate your attention to detail, creativity, and technical skills. Similarly, if you enjoy playing chess, it can highlight your strategic thinking and problem-solving skills.
  4. Build common ground with the employer. Listing your hobbies and interests can also help to make common ground with the employer. For example, if you list that you enjoy hiking and the employer is an avid hiker, this can create a connection and make you more memorable.

What to Include in Your Resume?

Now, you might think you can write about your personal info, easy peasy! That’s not how it works. Surely, you cannot list everything you do in your leisure time on your resume. On the other hand, it is not advisable to lie either because it could be revealed in the future, and your reputation will suffer turbulence. It might also make the recruiters think about what other things on your resume were false. 

You might wonder: “What qualities are recruiters looking for in a candidate?”

That’s an important question. You need to understand that recruiters look for the qualities behind your hobbies and interests. For example, suppose you have been a basketball player for years. In that case, it could show that you have experience working as a team member and understand how important it is for every member to function separately and together. 

So, let’s read about 7 interests and hobbies to put on your resume. 

1. Volunteer Work

Choosing to do something without gaining any financial benefits goes a long way. It also shines brightly on your resume. It shows you have integrity and care about other people. Companies look for someone they can rely on at a human level, trusting that each staff member is moving like a living organism within the company and keeping it alive.  

If you volunteer for an organization or a cause that aligns with the job you're applying for, this shows that you're passionate about giving back to your community and could demonstrate practical teamwork, communication, and leadership skills.

Suggested Activities: 

  • Charity
  • Mentoring programs 
  • Fundraising 
  • Community services
  • Environmental work

2. Sports

Perusing a sport can develop certain personality traits, such as teamwork, resilience, determination, commitment, hard work, and concentration. It could also demonstrate good time management skills and an ability to balance work and leisure. Such qualities are valuable to prospective employers.

Suggested Activities: 

  • Swimming
  • Yoga
  • Baseball
  • Personal fitness


3. Artistic Activity

Artistic work develops strong cognitive abilities, such as decision-making, problem-solving, creativity in developing ideas, finding innovative ways to execute ideas, etc. For example, if you have hobbies that involve creativity, such as painting, photography, or graphic design, this could demonstrate that you have an eye for detail and aesthetics, can think outside the box, and are comfortable with technology. Talking about your artistic pursuits reflects well on your resume, especially for the roles that require creativity, agility, and vision.

Suggested Activities: 

  • Painting
  • Drawing
  • Photography
  • Design
  • Sculpting

4. Technology and Industry-related Activity 

If you're interested in the industry you're applying for, you could mention any relevant activities you participate in outside of work. Other than that, the ever-changing world of technology is an inevitable part of our lives now and, consequently, an undeniable part of any profession and industry. Having a technology- or industry-related interest or skill can attract high-achieving opportunities towards you. 

Suggested Activities: 

  • Attending industry events or conferences
  • Reading industry publications
  • Contributing to industry-related blogs or forums
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Stock trading
  • Coding

5. Music 

Going on a path to becoming a musician requires years and years of dedication and discipline. Such attributes are not easy to find in everyone. This actively demonstrates the importance of mentioning your excellent skills in playing musical instruments, provided you have such skills. Besides, other musical activities can shine on your personality and attitude toward learning a new skill and teamwork. 

Suggested Activities: 

  • Being a band member
  • Being a member of a choir or orchestra
  • Songwriting
  • Singing 

6. Reading and Writing

If you enjoy writing about topics related to the job you're applying for, this could be a valuable hobby to mention. It demonstrates strong communication skills and a passion for the subject matter.

Also, if you enjoy reading books or participating in book clubs, this could demonstrate that you're intellectually curious, have strong analytical and critical thinking skills, and are committed to ongoing learning and self-improvement.

Suggested Activities: 

  • Writing
  • Blogging
  • Reading
  • Book clubs

7. Traveling

Mentioning that you enjoy traveling could demonstrate that you have a sense of adventure and are open to new experiences. This could be especially valuable if you're applying for a job that involves working with people from different cultures or backgrounds, or even for a job that requires business traveling.

Tips for listing your hobbies and interests on your resume

  • Keep it relevant. While it's great to showcase your personality and skills, keeping your hobbies and interests pertinent to the job you're applying for is essential. For example, if you're using it for a career in marketing, listing your passion for cooking may only be relevant if it can be tied back to your marketing skills.
  • List only a few hobbies. While it's great to have diverse interests, listing too many hobbies can be overwhelming and detract from the more critical information on your resume. Limit your hobbies and interests to just the few most relevant and impressive.
  • Avoid controversial hobbies. While you may be passionate about particular hobbies, avoiding listing anything that could be seen as controversial or offensive is essential. Be careful not to mention:
    1. Activities that are dangerous or illegal.
    2. Activities related to politics and religion. Keep your opinions to yourself.
    3. Activities that are unusual or difficult to explain. 
    4. Activities that can be interpreted as offensive or inappropriate.

Bonus Tip

Activities in the field of entertainment like acting and theater stand for the ability to captivate crowds in the recruiters’ minds, which comes with at least a few behavioral features beneficial in the workplace, such as the ability to speak in front of people, being sociable, and having a great sense of humor. 

Final Words

Listing your hobbies and interests on your resume can be valuable as long as it's done strategically and thoughtfully. By showcasing your personality, passion, and skills, you can make yourself stand out from other candidates and create a connection with the employer. 

Remember to keep the list short, relevant, and to the point. Don’t exaggerate your proficiency level anywhere in your resume. Last but not least, avoid sounding like a braggart because nobody likes a no-it-all! Incorporate the mentioned info in your resume, and you’re good to go. Good Luck!

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