Mastering the Elevator Pitch: Selling Yourself as a Millennial

Elevator Pitch

Imagine you’re stuck in an elevator with the hiring manager from your dream employer. You have ten floors and 30 seconds to make a lasting impression. What would you say? The elevator pitch, a term used to describe a brief attempt to sell a business, product, service or person, is increasingly important for Millennials to master because of the highly competitive job market. Here are 5 ways to nail this quick pitch:

Be more than just a sales pitch.

Create a connection with the interviewer by carrying a conversational tone throughout the pitch. Instead of reciting your resume word for word, focus on a story where you exceeded client expectations at work or led a group project to success in college. Interviewers will not remember what company you worked for or where you graduated, but they will remember big accomplishments told in a compelling way. Always ask yourself, if I ran into this interviewer in a coffee shop tomorrow, would he or she remember my name?


Skip the jargon.

Don’t try to overcompensate for your lack of experience or newness to the job market by showing you know what industry terms mean. If the hiring manager is from human resources, he or she may not be familiar with popular acronyms and phrases in the industry. Also, skip overused words such as innovative and unique. All job applicants think they are innovative and unique, how can you prove it?


Get to the point.

Apple famously coined the term “retina display” to avoid boring consumers with details about the resolution and pixels on their monitors. Just like people don’t want to hear about a 226 pixel per inch screen, interviewers don’t want to hear a drawn out story about your past experience. When you have a limited amount of time, it’s important to get to the point fast. Focus on showing results instead of the process that led up to the positive results. Think “I increased sales by 25%” as opposed to “I worked with a number of internal teams to create a unique promotional strategy for our new product launch that exceeded sales goals.”


Have a Strong Close

Don’t let the conversation end with a generic “thanks for coming in” that will leave you in suspense for days as you wait to hear back. When you wrap up the pitch or interview, make sure both you and the other party are on the same page as to what the next steps are. Will they be in touch? Should you follow up? These questions need to be answered before you walk out the door. Either way, make sure you ask for a phone number or email address so they know you’re interested in staying in contact, regardless of whether you’re hired or not.


Think Outside the Interview

The pitch isn’t over once the figurative elevator doors open. In today’s world, you should present the best version of yourself at all times, especially on social media. Recruiters and hiring managers will most likely scour the web to see how your online presence matches up with their standards. Even if you nail a job interview, embarrassing and incriminating pictures on Facebook could be a roadblock in landing the position. How do you avoid this? Do a social audit of your social media pages. A good rule of thumb when deciding what to keep is to ask yourself, “would I want my grandmother to see this?” If it’s safe for granny, it’s probably safe for future employers.


Have another tip on selling yourself? We want to hear it! Share with us below in the comments!