EVENTS & INSIGHTS / INSIGHT

Just give me the gist, but not too short

by Shannon Houde

You’re at a leading industry conference getting a free-trade banana from the display of otherwise fattening snacks, and looking around to catch eyes with someone and “network”. Ahhhh! All of a sudden you see your dream boss, your top influencer. You brave it, walk over, introduce yourself and they are engaged. They ask you simply,  

“So, what do you DO?” 

Your heart rate goes up, you start to fidgit, and then…freeze.  It seems like such a simple question (like the dreaded interview question, “walk me through your resume”.  I mean who, more than you, knows as much as you do about yourself?   

DON'T MISS OUT
ON MORE FREE TIPS

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

Sign up

But really, are you ready for this? You don’t have a choice but to get ready. The new secret jobs market insists that you take the time to craft your memorable, original intro now – to save yourself later.  

influencer

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Not looking for a new job? That’s ok as this quick (think 30-seconds) pitch could help you win contracts, funding, or support for your impact-driven mission.  It’s not used just to help you schmooze for a job, and, like LinkedIn, it isn’t only for job seekers, but rather, to help you build your personal brand and “make new friends” in your industry. 

The trap many fall into is making their answer too short with just a title and company name when asked “what do you do?”  That is boring!  You have to bring it to life, tell a story, and take the whole 30 seconds.  Don’t sell yourself short by keeping it too short. 

Creating an elevator pitch is a 6-step process:

  1. Identify your goal What is your objective? Are you telling potential contacts what you do? Telling potential employers what you want to do next? Are you talking to grandma or a hologram?  
  2. Explain what you do Be clear about the problem you are solving and use simple language, not in-depth technical details, so that anyone would understand it. 
  3. Communicate your Unique Selling Point Make your story come to life so that your listener wants to hear more. Make your enthusiasm contagious. Your brand is all about the story you can tell to illustrate who you are and what impact you have. Paint a picture. All effective sustainability programs communicate their “story” through real people and real projects. 
  4. Engage with a question To make it a two-way conversation that makes for good networking, end with a question, such as, “Tell me about yourself.” 
  5. Put it all together Merge the 4 sentences you’ve written. Don’t worry about making it sound good, you can do that later. Be silly, serious, funny, reserved — it doesn’t matter. Let yourself shine through authentically. 
  6. Practice Take some time to reflect on your writing and do a verbal recording. Circle the words and sentences that work. Look for the ones that hook you with a clear and confident story. Avoid connector words when possible. And don’t forget to smile!

We are here to help you break this process down, be your sounding board during practice, and to give you networking advice.  Also, a favorite book of mine to help you do this is Daniel Priestley’s “Key Person of Influence”. A quick airport read that is worth its (small) weight in gold. 

Are you ready?

This article was originally published on Triple Pundit

comments

You may also like...

Book Launch! Good Work: How to Build a Career that makes a Difference in the World

Joel Makower interviews Good Work author, Shannon Houde, about the evolving impact economy and how to shape a career that makes a difference. DON’T MISS OUTON MORE FREE TIPS Sign Up For Our Newsletter Sign up

By Shannon Houde
purpose
How to find your place in the purpose economy

We’re all looking for a little more purpose in our lives Even more so with the uncertainty that currently swirls around us on a daily basis. In fact, a strong desire to make a difference within their professional lives is one of the key reasons that two thirds of women say they want to substantially shake up their career in 2021. The great news is that there’s rarely been a better time to find your place within the burgeoning ‘purpose economy.’ A

By Shannon Houde
Webinar: Reset Your Compass and Navigate Through Uncertainty with Clarity and Confidence

OnPurpose 2020 Shannon was delighted to speak at OnPurpose 2020. You can view her Reset Your Compass and Navigate Through Uncertainty with Clarify and Confidence session by clicking the video below. If you’d like some help gaining clarity, you can book a 30 minute trial session here to discuss your challenges and objectives in more detail. DON’T MISS OUTON MORE FREE TIPS Sign Up For Our Newsletter Sign up

By Shannon Houde
4 ways to launch your career into the impact sector… and why now?

For all of us the pandemic has been a moment to take stock. To rethink and reframe what matters and what doesn’t, be that our health, our families, or pursuing our passion.   And seems it’s provided much the same opportunity for business.  Yes, the immediate corporate response to Covid-19 and a national lockdown was short-term survival. But it’s now clear that the enforced hiatus has also led many execs to look much further down the line, and recognize that values, and a sense of purpose have never

By Shannon Houde

NEED SOME SUPPORT?

Book a 30-minute trial session with Shannon

BOOK A TRIAL