“So tell me about yourself.”
The dreaded five words.
How are you to answer such a broad prompt? With your Professional Pitch, of course.
Your Professional Pitch is your verbal positioning. It is the back bone of your job search. You’ll use it in networking interviews, in cover letters and whenever you need to introduce yourself. Here’s how your pitch will work in various situations:
In A Job Interview
When the interviewer says, “So, tell me a little bit about yourself,” don’t be so quick to respond. do not tell your whole life story. Instead, say things that are relevant. Position yourself, and tell accomplishments that would be of interest to the organization. Based upon your research on your target audience, think about what you want to say to them. Examine your background to find things that fit. You should memorize your pitch, and then modify it depending on who you are talking to; you want to make sure your pitch is relevant to what the company is looking for. Keep in mind:
- Who you are pitching
- What they are interested in
- Who your likely competitors are
- What you bring to the party that your competitors do not
In Your Cover Letter
Your cover letters will be much more effective if you use GetFive format:
- Paragraph one is your introduction. This paragraph should be specific to the company.
- Paragraph two is where your pitch comes in. This is a summary of your experience.
- Paragraph three is a bulleted list of your accomplishments you think will be of interest.
- Paragraph four is the close, where you thank the hiring manager for their time and ask for a follow up meeting.
Practicing Your Pitch
Because your Professional Pitch is so crucial to the success of your job search, the words should simply flow naturally out of your mouth. Whether you practice in front of a mirror or with a small group of peers, prepare and rehearse until you feel confident.
You may come across a lot of surprises throughout your job search, but “tell me about yourself” should not be one of them. Follow GetFive techniques to take back control over this part of the interview process.