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Creating Your Elevator Pitch

Your elevator pitch is your brief response to the question “Tell me about yourself” or “Who are you and what do you do?” Develop your elevator pitch and be ready to promote yourself in any situation.

Creating Your Elevator Pitch

Elevator pitches are useful any time you meet someone new — at a job fair, an interview, a party, a spouse group meeting, a business meeting, your new classroom or yes, even in an elevator. You may need to tailor your elevator pitch or speech depending on your audience.

For example, if you are meeting with military spouses, you might answer the “tell me about yourself” question by saying:

“I’m an Air Force spouse with more than 12 years and six assignments under my belt. I’m passionate about children, especially my three boys and the children I care for as a pediatric nurse. We recently relocated from Little Rock, and I’m hoping to get a job at either Duke Children’s or Cape Fear Medical. If anyone has connections with either of those organizations, I’d love to talk to you.”

However, meeting a prospective employer, your elevator pitch introduction might be:

“I’m a RN/BSN with more than 9 years of progressively responsible experience caring for critically ill children. I recently received the 2015 Nurse of the Year award from Arkansas Children’s Hospital for demonstrating care innovation, transformation and collaboration to support exceptional patient experiences. I’m interested in joining Duke Children’s as a pediatric nurse. Can you steer me in the right direction?”

Always keep your pitch short and sweet — 20-30 seconds. Make sure you state your benefit to the employer clearly and end your pitch with a question or a request as shown in the examples above. Limit yourself to one to three things you want to emphasize about yourself and your ambitions.

You can find additional examples of elevator pitches on the GCFLearnFree.org and other internet sites. As you start developing your elevator pitch, make sure you’re honest, use current terms and focus on the now rather than on what you did in your past.

Practice your speech. Once you’ve completed your elevator speech, it’s important to practice it until it feels natural to you. Try it out on your family and friends and get their feedback. You may need to tweak it until you are comfortable. Practice adapting it to fit different situations.

Your elevator speech is your introduction to new contacts and your goal is to get them to want to know more about you. With luck, your introduction will provide the opportunity to share more information about what you can contribute, including your skills and experience.

If you have questions about developing your elevator speech, building your personal brand or any other aspect of your job search, call 800-342-9647 to speak to a career coach.

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