It’s the first question in your interview, and it sets the tone. The interviewer says, “Tell me about yourself.”
And you’re stuck. What does the interviewer(s) want to know? Do I tell them about my likes, hobbies? No! Don’t let the question fool you. The interviewer wants to know who you are as a PROFESSIONAL or EMPLOYEE. So, how do you sum up your career? With your Elevator Pitch of course.
Depending on your industry and where you are at in your career, you may or may not be familiar with the term ‘Elevator Pitch.’ Let me begin with this statement ‘A strong and concise Elevator Pitch can make or break your first impression.’
What is an Elevator Pitch? The term used to describe your opening statement; a response to the looming question “What do you do?’
Sounds important, right? Now the challenge is ‘what do you say?’ What is the perfect verbiage and what do you divulge?
An Elevator Pitch should run between 1-2 minutes and summarize not only what you do, but your key strengths as a professional. And while this may sound simple enough, the truth is most professionals, including yours truly, struggle with their introductions.
Recently my Elevator Pitch came to me while I was getting ready for the day. I am a firm believer in visual learning and as such, allow me to share my Elevator Pitch with you:
‘Hi, I’m Laura Bashore. My company is Anew Resume and Career Services. I work with professionals in managerial to C-level roles and those professionals looking to break into management positions in any industry. I create resumes, cover letters, LinkedIn profiles, conduct mock interviews, and provide career coaching ranging from job search strategies, salary negotiations, performance evaluations and moving to the next level in your career.’
Make sure to stay on target and then pause for a response. You don’t want to start the interview by discussing irrelevant topics or tangents. Trust me, as someone who has conducted more than my share of interviews; nothing has me tune out faster than a weak opening.
Take a deep breath before your interview and remember the employer invited you to interview. They already like something about you and you have beat out plenty of competition. Focus on your strengths and making a connection with the interviewer.
Besides being prepared for your next interview, your elevator pitch is useful in most business settings.
I cannot tell you how relieved and excited I am to have my Elevator Pitch nailed down. I am also experiencing a boost in confidence when I attend networking events and making introductions.
Do you have your Elevator Pitch? Share it with us in the comments below.
Until next Tuesday…