Communication ~ Interviews

The 45 second to 2 minute “elevator speech” is your way to give the employer a snapshot of you when they ask the most commonly asked interview question ~ Could you please tell me something about yourself?

This snapshot should include a bit about your traits:

  • honest
  • reliable
  • punctual
  • flexible
  • hard-working

It should contain information about your skills:

  • skilled in MS Office Suite (all programs)
  • Coordinated and scheduled events for 50-100 participants
  • Answered multi-line telephone systems, transferred calls, and took messages
  • Worked closely with Executive Director to create employee manual

You want them to know about your work history and accomplishments:

  • While working at XYZ Company I was promoted from Cashier to Lead Cashier in less than 6 months
  • I supervised between 4-8 people depending on the day and shift
  • I was trained in bank deposits, scheduling, time card preparation, and monthly reports
  • My manager chose me as employee of the month for 3 months in a row, which is the limit each person can have in any 6 month period
  • And working as a team we streamlined our work stations and created a more timely service rate for our customers and created greater turnover and profit margin for the company

You simply need to know what you do and then put each part down on paper and practice saying it so you think it sounds good…and then practice saying it to someone else. The more you practice, the better it will sound when you are talking to an employer.

This “Tell me about yourself” speech can also be used when you are talking to anyone about yourself and your career. It is a very common question at social events, or business events, or even family reunions where not everyone knows each other…”So, what do you do for a living?” You already know the basics of what you want to say, so you just change it to a more casual version and give a great picture of who you are and what you do for a living.

Networking is an important part of job search or career changing and you want your answer to come evenly and smoothly when you are meeting new people and hoping to gain them as allies in your career endeavors. Networking has gotten me 2 different jobs because I was able to articulate my skills, my traits, and my future plans to someone that had the contacts to help me go further. Future posts will have more on networking but I want you to start thinking about it now because it is something you should be doing every day. Every day you should tell  people what you are doing and where you want to end up. Are you a student? What are you studying? Your instructors have been in the business you are entering so they are your first point of contact…get to know them and let them see the best of you. Are you a dislocated worker? Tell everyone that you know and everyone that you meet what you do and the type of work you are seeking. 80% or more of jobs are gotten through networking with other people, so you can see why you can’t be shy or timid when you are job searching or changing careers.

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“Loretta is a highly experienced and productive professional in the field of Workforce Development, Job Readiness, Career Counseling, Workshop Facilitation, and Job Search Preparation. I have worked with her closely for over six years, and she has consistently been a valuable, key resource in the employment community. For three of those years, she was at Napa Valley College as a resource specialist in their career center... 
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