An elevator pitch is a brief (20 to 30 second) speech that helps you to stand out from the hundreds of other students & professionals a prospective employer will meet at the career fair. It helps quickly build rapport in an atmosphere where it is easy to get lost in the crowd.
Your pitch should quickly explain who you are, what you are looking for, and why you are the best person for the job. Remember, non-verbal cues are as important as the words you use: stand up straight, make eye contact, and use a firm hand shake when greeting the potential employer. When recruiting for Hajoca’s management trainee program here are the five things we’ve found help potential employees stand out.
- To start, ask the employer’s name, and repeat it back to them. Studies have shown that hearing your own name promotes an instant feeling of comfort and positivity. It will also help you remember their name long-term.
- Next, you want to introduce yourself, explain why you are at the career fair, what type of employment you are looking for, and a give a quick summary of your experience, strengths, and goals. A strong pitch usually has 3-4 facts; too much detail will be overwhelming. This is also a good time to give them a copy of your resume.
- Communicate clearly why you are different than the other candidates.
- Let the employer know why you are interested in their company and ask a question about the company or position to turn the conversation back over to them.
- Before walking away, ask for the Company Representative’s card or contact information. It shows interest in furthering the conversation and also gives you the necessary information for a prompt follow up.
Practice makes perfect! Try it out on your friends, family, professors, and school career services staff. A good pitch doesn’t sound rehearsed, even if it’s been practiced hundreds of times!