Network for your Dream Job -
Create an Effective Elevator Speech
Have you ever applied to a job on-line that you REALLY wanted and did not receive a response? Have you ever attended a professional event where representatives from a company with your dream job were in attendance? If yes, did you want to call the company in hopes of getting an interview? OR do you know certain companies in your area that you would LOVE to work for but just can’t get an interview…if so, then you need an elevator speech.
Elevator speeches are brief “speeches” used to catch someone’s attention. In the case of a job search, they are used at networking events to gain an employer’s attention or to set up an informational interview with a company of interest to you. (An informational interview is when there is not an active job open but you just want to learn more about the company).
For all my single readers, think of speed dating, where you go to a public place and they set you up on “dates” where you spend 5 minutes with someone and then move to the next “date”. At the end of the night, you pick who you want to get to know better. Your elevator speech is the same thing. You get about 5 minutes of an employer’s time to briefly tell your story and entice them into wanting to get to know you better.
In order to create an elevator speech, you need to decide 2 things:
- What do I want to do?
- How do my skills apply to that job?
Once you decide on these things, create a brief paragraph (known as an elevator speech) to describe yourself. This speech should be brief (less than 3 minutes talking at normal speed – You don’t want to sound like an auctioneer).
To come up with some ideas, go out to the Internet and look at some “dream” job postings. Look back at your work experience and come up with a few sentences from your experience that ties to the job and sell yourself with a “catchy” phrase.
Elevator speeches must be very personalized to be effective, therefore I cannot provide you with specific examples but to give you a start, below is a copy of the elevator speech that I used to get my dream job. (Feel free to email me with specific questions at firstname.lastname@example.org).
Example elevator speech:
My name is Chloe Sunstone and after years in HR process roles, I can save your company millions of dollars. As an HR process expert with an MBA in Organizational Behavior, I have many examples of implementing HR strategies and leading large projects that have saved my prior employers millions. For example, in my last role, I revamped the entire recruitment process saving over $3 million annually in cost. Are you interested in being recognized for saving your company tons of money? If yes, I would love to network and share ideas. No strings attached. Are you willing to meet next week for lunch? My treat.
Think about your background and DREAM BIG. Each of us has achieved professional successes that give us pride and confidence. Just remember this is your DREAM job when developing your speech. Using DREAM as an acronym, below are some tips for developing a super effective elevator speech:
- D – Descriptive – Be sure to describe your education and experience in a positive way leading to a desire to learn more about you. You want to catch your audience’s attention
- R – Relevant to the job/ career of interest – Since you want to reach your dream job, think about how your skills tie to that job. Review the listed skills required for the job and then ask yourself: Do I have those skills? How are these skills shown in my career or educational experience? Write a few sentences that are RELEVANT to the job. Remember to be REALISTIC about your skills. For example: If you have been working in Finance for 10 years and decide your DREAM job is to be a Fashion Designer (and you do not have any fashion experience), these steps will not work in that particular case. You will need to go back to school or gain some professional experience in Fashion Design.
- E – Elevator – Remember this is your elevator speech! You want to use this to move UP to your dream job. Be sure to reflect your experience in the most POSITIVE manner while still being honest. (You don’t want to lie about your experience! You will get caught, Trust me! Having interviewed thousands of people in my career, I have several stories of catching applicants in a lie during an interview but that is for another blog.)
- A – Accurate – Remember, this is a long-term strategy so you will want to maintain an on-going relationship with all of your networking contacts. Be honest! You don’t want to create a dishonest image.
- M – Minutes – You will only get a few minutes of a business professional’s time so you need to be concise and get your point across quickly. It is the equivalent of a TV commercial of your experience, not a verbal resume.
If you follow the DREAM job technique, you will be able to develop an effective elevator speech. Be creative and have fun with your elevator speech!!
Remember, since you only have a few minutes of their time; be clever in your elevator speech. It is your personal commercial. Think DREAM job!!!!