How to Create a Winning Elevator Pitch (Examples Included)
Are you ready to interact with a potential employer at any given time? Do you have a memorable elevator pitch? Sharpening your elevator pitch can be the difference between capturing someone’s attention and letting the opportunity go to waste.
“With an elevator pitch prepared, you can have confidence that you are armed with a great way to initiate a conversation with someone. It also helps formulate an answer for the very common interview question: ‘Tell me about yourself,’” shares Toni Frana, one of FlexJobs’ career coaches.
What Is an Elevator Pitch?
An elevator pitch is essentially a short overview of who you are, what you’re interested in doing for work, and why you’re qualified for the position that you’re seeking.
It’s called an elevator pitch because you should picture yourself serendipitously sharing an elevator ride with the person who can help you get whatever it is you want—a new job, a promotion, a job interview or meeting, etc. What would you say to them on that short elevator ride to get them to help you, and why should they care? That’s your elevator pitch.
What to Consider when Creating an Elevator Pitch
Structure and Template
“Your pitch needs and introduction, a summary of what you do, and a closing to wrap it up. Keep in mind, an elevator pitch is short, so your summary should be brief, you don’t want to include your entire work history. Pick one or two things that would be most relevant to your audience to share,” says Frana.
You should conclude your pitch with a request, which entails what you would like the person to do, such as accept your resume/business card, allow you to follow up with them in a week, connect with you on LinkedIn, help you find a position within their company, etc.
Keep It Short
You’ll lose listeners if your elevator pitch tries to convey too much information. Experts generally recommend a speech of less than a minute. Focus on sparking enough interest for the other party to ask follow-up questions.
What do you want others to know about you? What do you bring to the table that is unique or noteworthy? The more you get to the heart of your true interests, skills, and experiences, the better you’ll be able to present yourself clearly and effectively to others.
Write out what you want to get across, and try saying it out loud. What looks good on paper may turn out to be wordy or tongue-twisting when spoken. Keep crafting until the pitch flows out of your mouth. When you think you’ve got a winner, try it out on people you trust to gain feedback. The best pitches sound natural and conversational, so practice until you feel comfortable with the speech.
Elevator Pitch Examples
Depending on where you’re at in your career and life, your elevator pitch may include different elements. Here are a few examples, based on common career and life stages.
“I’m a communications specialist returning to the workforce after staying at home with my family. I’m looking forward to jumping back into the workforce and using my expert skills in writing, presentation development, and delivery to help an organization deliver its message in a more effective manner. I’d like to schedule a time to get coffee.”
Sample Elevator Pitch for Entrepreneurs
“For the past five years, I’ve been running my ecommerce business. We increased our sales by 25% in the last year. I’m always looking to work with and consult with others who may need a place to sell a product. I’d love to connect on LinkedIn.”
“Two of the apps I’ve created as a mobile developer were featured as the ‘App of the Day’ in the Apple app store. I take a lot of pride in the work I create at my company, which specializes in game development. But, I’m wanting to expand our solutions into other areas, such as eLearning. Would you want to meet for dinner?”
Student Elevator Pitch
“I recently graduated from my state university with a degree in finance and a 3.7 GPA. As the treasurer of my student organization, I got hands-on experience with managing finances and budgets. I even helped plan the school’s most successful fundraiser. I’m looking forward to using and growing these skills in a new role that can help a company’s financial performance. Are you aware of any entry-level finance jobs available at your company?”
General Elevator Pitch
“Over the past three years, I’ve been able to take on more responsibility at the company I work for. A project that stands out was when we implemented our customer relationship management (CRM) platform. We were able to effectively track the efforts of business development, and I was able to serve as the administrator who oversaw data integrity to help ensure that revenue targets were being met and were on track. I can help your company fine-tune its CRM processes. Would you be available for a call?”
More Help with Creating an Elevator Pitch
You never know when you’ll bump into the next person who can help take your job search to the next level. And don’t think that elevator pitches are only relegated to elevators; you can deliver a winning elevator pitch in the grocery store, on an airplane, or anywhere else that you might potentially meet someone who’s able to take your job search to the next level!
To really master your elevator pitch, consider meeting with a FlexJobs career coach. As a FlexJobs member, you get a discounted rate for a one-on-one, 30-minute session. You can get customized tips and advice on your elevator pitch, and also practice delivering your pitch for more confidence and clarity.
Photo Credit: bigstockphoto.com
A version of this article was previously published on August 25, 2016.
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