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Elevator pitches are quick synopses of what you bring to the table as a professional. While they’re classically used while networking – allowing you to effectively introduce yourself to a new contact – elevator pitches also play a role in job interviews.

In many cases, icebreaker interview questions like “Tell me about yourself” are the perfect time to deploy your elevator pitch. If you’d like to make sure yours impresses, here’s an overview of what you should and shouldn’t include in your elevator pitch.

What to Cover in Your Elevator Pitch

An effective elevator pitch needs to address specific points. First, you need to introduce yourself as a professional, outlining who you are in that context. Second, covering what you do is essential, providing additional details beyond a job title. Finally, you need to have a compelling value proposition that shows why the company should hire you.

Begin your elevator pitch by stating your name. Follow that up with your current job title, your number of years of experience, and a brief summary of what you focus on accomplishing in your position. Highlight a couple of relevant achievements, mentioning key skills and quantifying the details when possible. Wrap up your elevator pitch by discussing what you hope to gain from a new role, outlining how you envision your career unfolding and how you want to provide value to a new employer.

If you’re a recent graduate, discussing your degree in your elevator pitch is a smart move. Additionally, if you have licenses or similar credentials that the hiring manager wants to find in a candidate, you can mention them after you state your job title.

Tweaking your elevator pitch before every interview is also wise. By adjusting the content, you can speak directly to the hiring manager’s needs. As a result, your elevator pitch is more compelling, which causes the hiring manager’s interest in what you’ll say during the rest of the interview to rise.

What to Avoid in an Elevator Pitch

One of the biggest things you need to avoid when refining your elevator pitch is making it too long. The term “elevator pitch” is based on the notion of completing your introduction during the duration of a typical elevator ride. As a result, you want to keep the entire thing around 30 to 60 seconds long.

Additionally, don’t use too much jargon. Not all hiring managers are familiar with the nuances of your past roles, so it’s best to rely on straightforward, easily understood language.

You also want to avoid unnecessary personal details. While mentioning a side project or hobby that’s clearly relevant to the job you want to land is appropriate, you don’t need to discuss activities or interests that don’t relate to the position in most cases. The only exception is when the hiring manager undeniably shares that interest. In that case, adding it to your answer could help you develop a rapport.

Find Your Next Contract Role

Ultimately, a refreshed elevator pitch that aligns with the guidance above can boost your career by opening doors to new opportunities. Are you ready to put your elevator pitch to work and want to work with a recruiter to streamline your job search? If so, Alpha Consulting wants to hear from you. Contact us today.

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