What would you say if you had an opportunity to speak to the person in charge of hiring at your dream company? How would you get the conversation started? How would you introduce yourself? If you’re not prepared you might end up stammering and stuttering and leave them with a big question mark in their mind.
If you have an elevator pitch prepared and ready to go though, you’ll know exactly what to say and the conversation can continue from there, either in person or by email. But your elevator pitch needs to stand out and it needs to give them a reason to want to continue the conversation with you.
An elevator pitch is often used when you don’t have a lot of time so it needs to be quick but it also needs to be concise. It should tell the person you are talking to who you are and what you do and it should make them want to know more. If you can do this in a minute or less, you’ve got a good elevator speech.
All in less than a minute though? Yes, it can be done. Here’s 3 things you need to know when you are putting together the perfect elevator pitch:
1. Make Yourself Unique
There are thousands of people that are qualified and have the training to do the same job that you are trying to get. Because of that, you need to make yourself stand out. Don’t just explain what you are trained to do – put your focus on the results that you’ve gotten in the past and bring attention to the areas where you excel that other people applying for this job might not.
2. Focus on Solutions
Most people will give you a minute to say what you have to say but the second they walk away they have completely forgotten you. How do you avoid that and give them something to remember. Put to focus of your words on solutions. If you give them a solution to a problem that their company has or that is common in the job that you want to apply for, they will remember you and they will want to know more. (Note: this is where company research comes in – if you’ve done your research, you’ll know what they need)
3. Make Them Want More
There’s a reason that it is called an elevator speech – it should fit into the time frame that it takes to ride a couple floor on the elevator. You need to pique their interest so that when they get back to their office they are going to go and look for your resume or their going to pull your card out (because you did have one on you and give them one right?) and send you an email or give you a call and ask you to come in and see them.
Practice your elevator speech enough so that it sounds natural. It’s important not to sound like you are reciting something you’ve memorized (even though you have). Try saying it with different tones of voice and different emphasis on certain words. Smile when you practice it. Try different variations.
If you follow these tips, the person you’ve met will want to see you again!