Get your elevator speech right and you could be going to the top
In his latest bulletin from the careers coalface, York job finder general Simon Wallace says it’s time to talk to people
Part 5: Communicating
In the previous part I asked you to do some learning: what is going on in the world around you? You will have also been considering your list of “what you are good at” and what your “career anchors” are. The next part is about fitting it all together. To do this you will have to start talking to people.
For some, this is the hardest bit. Some people think that when they talk to others they should be trying to sell something, or they should be asking for opportunities. In the previous article, I recommended using social media to find out more about the companies, so you might already be talking to people. Find out where people go to get their morning coffee or lunchtime sandwich or where they go to after work on a Friday; be social. Say hello. Ask them if they are having a busy week.
And when you start talking to others, they will naturally want to learn about you. This is your opportunity. You already know what you are good at, so let others know. I would recommend preparing an “elevator speech” which is a statement about yourself that gets across the essence of what you are good at in a short space of time.
You should rehearse this so that it feels natural but not learn it parrot fashion. Try to get feedback on this from trusted friends.
When thinking about your speech, consider the following answers to “what do you do?” a) I am an office manager; b) I create productive environments. In statement a), I know what you do, I have met office managers and so I will think of you as one of those. In statement b) I am keen to know more about you; how do you do that? What environments? How productive? Use your “what you are good at” and turn it into a statement about what you do as oppose to a job title.
As humans we are designed to make connections. The more you learn about others and vice versa, the more likely it is that connections will be made. From the previous “I create productive environments,” someone might now think: I remember talking to my friend the other day, he told me he was having a problem with productivity in one of his departments, I think I’ll introduce you to him. Do you see how these things work? Other people make the connections for you. The more people you talk to, the more likely a connection will be made.
So, learn about others and let them learn about you. In the next part we’ll find out what to do with these connections.
- See the rest of the Job Finder General series here
- Follow Simon on Twitter
- Click here for the B&A Careers website