When you’re searching for your next career chapter, the question that comes up in most interviews is “tell me about yourself.” I made the mistake of taking this as a cliche question that I could answer however the mood struck me. The reality is there’s an art to interviewing and selling your brand, and this is your mission statement.
Think of this as how you set the overall tone for the interview, and how you want the interviewer to know you when you leave and how you fit into the organization. What you bring to the table to enhance the team, how you connect to the corporate culture and how you would be the candidate they would be most excited about walking into the company the next day!
And like following a sales process, there is a formula to follow to answer and gain personal clarity on this all important question.
PPF – Present, Past, Future
- Start with an introduction to who you are as a professional.
- Talk about where you are right now (or were).
- What you did – “where I xxx … ”.
- What you currently are seeking.
- Highlight your past experiences and proven successes.
- What your strengths and abilities are.
- A good starting point is to list 5 skills you have that are pertinent to the role you are applying for. Then write 3-5 sound bites highlighting your skills and past successes.
- Here is the place to talk about your future aspirations.
- And why you are excited about the role.
To execute this create a script and practice it. Leave a voice message with a trusted friend or mentor to get honest feedback.
The script, skills & sound bites list cannot be memorized or read! It must flow naturally, meaning my above script will not necessarily sound like what I wrote but it will capture the essence of it. Internalizing the feeling behind the words is what matters most!
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