“So, tell us about yourself…” This age old simple question can be the most difficult to answer, but it’s also one of the most important during a job interview. This question is asked often during interviews, or even networking events or out of the blue, so it’s important to have a clear career-related elevator pitch.
Breaking your answer into 3 parts will help you craft an organized, comprehensive, and concise response every time.
Who are you?
“Hi, my name is [insert name] and I’m from [hometown].”
Here is where you could throw in any other personal information that you think is important and relevant. Keep it brief and focused. The example names your hometown because it might be something you have in common and never would have known. Finding common ground is key and sharing these small details can really be essential to successfully introducing yourself.
What do you do?
“Currently I am a [position title] at [company] where I [daily activity]. Before this, I worked at [company] where I [daily activity].”
This is the part of the interview where you talk about the past and present. Always start with the present. Briefly explain your position showing that you know what you’re talking about. This makes you credible and shows why you matter within this new position/company. After covering your current life, explain what you were doing previously. If possible, highlight other relevant skills in previous positions. Most importantly in this step, be confident and sell yourself!
Where are you going?
“My hope is to gain more experience in [activity] which is why I’m so excited for this opportunity to talk with you all.”
Similar to how you answer “where do you see yourself in 5 years,” be sure to close your answer by connecting to the company/position you are applying to. Explain why this skill is important to you and how it is something you are passionate about. This can be a skill you had previously and want to get back into, or something new that you’ve never tried before. Either way, it needs to be unique and meaningful to you. Let your personality shine through this last step of the job interview. The organization will notice this passion and thrive on the fact you care.