A recent article of mine covered most people’s lack of efficacy in practicing their elevator pitches at job search networking meetings. I wanted to follow up on that and prove my tenets, so I brainstormed with a group of trusted associates—all of whom are in transition—and we came up with some “best practices.” Following are our findings. Based on this information, you’ll be able to rework your own pitch and then practice it when networking. I promise you’ll see results instantly.
It’s most important to realize that different circumstances require different pitches. Otherwise, your elevator pitch will be perceived as canned and out of context. Make sure it’s memorable, because if it isn’t, you’ll simply sound like everyone else. Try introducing an element of surprise or some humor. The pitch has to be brief and to the point, so that people don’t tune you out. And it has to have a positive tone. No one’s interested in why you’re in transition.
Announce your name at the beginning and again at the end. Make sure people hear you and get the name. If you say it fast the way we normally do, people won’t get it or be able to remember it. Following your name, identify your position—or the position you want to get.