Elevator pitch – Text for reading comprehension
What’s an elevator pitch, or elevator speech and how can I use it to help my career or business?
Imagine you are in an elevator (or “lift” in the UK) and the CEO of your company walks in and asks what you do. This is a rare moment to “sell” your talents to the head of your company, but you only have a minute or less to do it.
This is why we call it an elevator speech or pitch. It’s a short introduction of yourself or your company. It should be interesting enough, so that the person you’re telling it to, will want to know more about you or your company. You don’t actually have to be in an elevator, it just has to be short and sweet.
If it is done well, this short speech can help you build your network, get a job or new business. It is all about you, your talents and expertise. You can also use it as a Twitter, Linkedin/Xing business introduction or objective, to prepare for a job interview, focus on an objective in a presentation or present a project.
So what should a good “elevator speech” contain? It all depends on who you are speaking to. But in a nutshell,
It should be short. Between 30-60 seconds and contain around 75 words and be simple. Do not complicate it with business jargon.
It should answer 3 questions.
Who are you?
Smile and introduce yourself with your name and surname
What do you do?
Give your job title and what you’re doing that will interest the person in front of you. In one sentence, explain how you did it and what you achieved; like increased sales, cut down costs or/and increased productivity or how you solved a known problem in the industry.
What do you want?
The last question will depend on your goal or objective. But ending it with a question is a good idea. “Could I call you to set up a meeting?” “I would love the opportunity to tell you more. Can I call you next week?” “Would you like to know how I can do this for your company?”
And finally, be confident, speak naturally and don’t be upset if it doesn’t work each time. One good outcome is all you need!