It’s only a matter of time before you are asked the question in some way shape or form. It’s most likely going to occur at the very beginning of the interview. “Tell us about yourself.” The age-old question that every job, every company, and every interviewer inevitably asks.Easy enough question, right? After all, who knows you better than you? Maybe it’s just an ice-breaker or conversation starter; an opportunity to establish rapport between strangers. Maybe.
To people who think deeply about interviews and relationships though, it’s more. So, so much more. The first few sentences about you is actually one of your only chances to establish a personal brand that engages your listener. We don’t get all that many opportunities to market ourselves in polite conversation, so make sure you make the most of this moment!
To start things off right and set the tone for a perfect interview we offer these 4 tips to a personal brand statement:
1.) Make it genuine.
Put the index cards away and the teleprompter into storage. Your brand statement needs to feel relaxed, sincere, and invite further discussion. Smile and be friendly. You want to encourage conversation, not have your audience listen without comment. Remember, not many people want to try and keep a boring conversation afloat. Moreover, most people will look for the easiest escape route in an awkward situation.
2.) Keep it short. Keep it informative.
Try to keep your statement tight and concise. Tell the listener who you are, what you do, and why they should care. Put your best assets on the table, with a humble yet confident manner. Try to keep your statement around 45-seconds to 1-minute —you don’t have to play all your cards right away, you’re just setting the tone for an engaging conversation.
3.) Make it different.
Let’s face it; there are other candidates for this position. Actually, there are probably a bunch of people with similar qualifications and resumes competing for the same spot. It’s time to differentiate yourself from the pack. Don’t merely explain what you’ve done in the past, but rather focus on the results of your efforts—share a proud or noteworthy career moment. Leave your audience with something memorable that they’ll want to talk about later in the interview.
4.) Show your value.
You absolutely must answer the question: “what’s in it for the employer?” The cold reality; no one cares about what you’ve accomplished unless it applies to their needs. Show them that you’re the solution to their problem and you’ll immediately grab their attention, setting the tone for a profitable interview.
As you create your perfect personal brand statement, it’s not possible to include all the things that make you an all-around great person and the best fit for the position—and it doesn’t have to. You just have to tell a great story, one that will pique the curiosity of your audience. Remember: keep it genuine, brief, informative, memorable, and valuable. If you do that, the conversation will last longer and give you the openings you need to dive into all of your other great qualities.
You will set the tone for a perfect interview.