What’s Your Story?
When you’re presenting yourself in social, or more formal, situations- in an elevator or at those mythical cocktail parties – you have the choice, and the power, to help listeners learn what’s really important about you. How you talk about yourself, what you start with and where you go with your story, is always up to you. This requires, first, that you know who you are, what you want, and where you’re going. Sound like pressure? It might.
A lot of people feel kind of queasy when they work on their elevator pitch. They try to memorize a catchy, pithy statement to use when meeting people, making sure they don’t trip on their words. Personally, I prefer that my clients think more about having a conversation with someone in a way that genuinely conveys who they are – hitting the key points that are important. You can call that an elevator pitch – but how does that feel for you? I want you to feel good about you, and about connecting with others while sharing the story of who you are.
Follow these tips to create, and then share, your genuine message of you:
- Ask yourself – How can I explain what I do so others understand it? With all of the complexity of jobs these days you might need to figure out a way to simplify the way you talk about what you do so others really understand. Even those who don’t know the ins and outs of your work can be helpful to you! Engaging others in a conversation about what you do (and of course what they do!) and how this impacts commerce/the world/people can be useful in creating a good connection.
- Make a list of things you know you love to do (tailor this to whatever your needs are- going to a conference and just want to make new contacts? Going somewhere that you’ll need to talk about yourself with potential job search contacts?) and how these actions or skills create positive results. How long have you been enjoying these activities/skills?
- What characteristics can you use to describe yourself? (Ambitious, creative, analytical, have tons of energy – make these descriptors your own)
- Write down what you want to see for yourself in the next year – or 5. What new position(s) are you looking to move towards, or what new organization(s)?
- Now pull this all together into a few casual sentences – you do not want to deliver this is a rehearsed manner! – so that you can genuinely share what you’re about – maybe like this:
You know how you see those sponsored ads in Instagram? I’m the one analyzing the data that tells me who should get those ads. I’ve loved analyzing puzzles, numbers, and patterns my whole life – you could say I’m one of those number nerds — and this analytics job has given me a chance to be really creative – and nerdy- with new systems to create new processes that deliver more accurate results for my team. I’m aiming to join the data analytics team at Amazon or Google in the next year and a half.
This is a tight, short version of a story. You’ll have many opportunities to tell your story in a wide variety of situations, and being prepared will give you more of the results you want; so know what you want.
Remember that your attitude and enthusiasm, the energy you convey, has everything to do with how others will respond to you.
Be energetic, smile, (dare I say: have fun?) with the people you meet and they’ll remember you, and remember you more positively. Be sure to read the tone of the situation you’re in, notice the dynamics of the people you’re with so you’ll know what’s appropriate. You don’t want to be the one who’s being too relaxed in a formal environment, or vice versa!
Sharing your story well puts others at ease and helps them to do the same. You’re mood, energy and interest is contagious. Get out there and tell your good story.
If you’re having trouble telling your story, and want personalized help in pulling it together, let me know and we can work it out together. Call 877-872-3929 to set up a free, short call!