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The typical way to introduce yourself is to say your name and then what your job is: „I work as...“ or „I am... “. There is nothing incorrect about it, yet it does not say much.

The tip to making your introduction more interesting is to insert one more sentence, between your name and the job. The sentence will describe one benefit you bring. This structure is referred to as an elevator pitch. Use this article to prepare yours in such a way that it sounds natural to you and easy to use.

 

 

 

Elevator pitch

 

Elevator pitch is a popular name for a brief introduction of up to 10 seconds, which is more or less the time you would have, you guessed it, in an elevator, but also in any other situation of introducing yourself as a professional to somebody new.

Sure, you cannot zip your professional profile into 10 seconds and 3 sentences. But those 10 seconds are enough to make a positive first impression.

Your hooking elevator pitch will consist of your name, a benefit you bring, and your job or employer:

name + benefit + job

 

The benefit means your personal contribution, the value you bring to your clients, customers or your employer. Examples of how to describe a benefit include:

 

  • I help people to ...
  • I help my team...
  • I like helping... with...
  • I like contributing to...
  • I would like to help...
  • (I came here today, because) I would like to learn more about.../gain some inspiration..., and use it to help...

 

e.g.

I help people who move to Brussels to create their new home there as quickly as possible. I am a real estate agent. And you?

I help my team communicate our messages to the public. I work in the PR department of .... How about you?

I like helping people who are creative and full of ideas to get things done. I am a project manager, working with artists, and you?

I like contributing to a nice atmosphere and peace in the workplace, that is why I found the topic today interesting. I work as an officer for ... What is your link to mediation?

I would like to help this city become somewhat cleaner. I am a technician in a company for electric car rental, so that´s my contribution. What is your job?

I would like to learn more about coaching in management and use it to help my team feel motivated at work. I work for ... as a manager of .... department. What brings you here?

 

 

Alternatives

 

Adjust it to your culture and personality

 

In some cultures it sounds natural to say the benefit straight out, and anything other than that would lower your credibility and sound like a self-confidence issue. However, in some other cultures it is less usual and might sound like showing off and slightly arrogant. You know best how it is in your environment, so take that into consideration and adjust your elevator pitch to the place or the audience.

If you find it too difficult or unsuitable to say what you help with directly after your name, try “softening it”, for example in one of these two ways:

  • Change the order.

Say the job role first and then the benefit.

  • Soften the language.

For example, through recognizing that this is your view: “I like to believe that I help...” , “I see my role as being the person who helps others to...”, or through expressing it as an intention: “I would very much like to contribute to...”, “I am trying to help people...”.

 

 

Adjust it to the occasion

 

If you want to use your elevator pitch in different situations, you will need several different ones, because nothing is universal enough to sound natural in every situation you might find yourself in. A good elevator pitch will fit the occasion. But in order to be prepared, you can think of alternatives based on some typical situations, or prepare for a particular occasion ahead of you. The prepared pitches can serve you as a back-up and a frame. Once you get familiar with the structure, you will be able to improvise in any professional context when you want to say who you are.

 

Don´t forget to ask the other person back and to be an attentive listener. All the rest will flow; your hard work is done.

 

 

example:

Hi, I am Aneta. I help people who are considering a career change to make decisions and to carry them out. I am a career and life coach.

How about you?

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