There are many different approaches and resources to use for interview preparation, but people still tend to either overlook or overthink the impact of first impressions. It is important to start an interview strong in order for the employer or hiring manager to feel confident in considering you for the job. It can be very challenging to start and end an interview on the right note because of tricky questions that are usually presented at those points in the interview. During the first few moments of the interview the employer or HR manager prompts you with the dreaded “Tell me about yourself” question. This question stumps and intimidates many people because it is so open-ended and it sets the tone for the rest of the interview. Unsure of how to even begin responding to this question? Ease your mind by using the following approach and impress the interviewer within the first few minutes.
“So, tell me about yourself”
Most people do not know what to do with this question due to its vagueness. There is no ideal answer to that question, but the strongest, most professional approach would be to respond with an elevator pitch. Offering the employer a clear and concise introduction to who you are as a working professional and potential employee makes a great first impression. Consider the following points when developing your elevator pitch to answer the opening question:
- Describe what intrinsically motivates you at work.
- Explain types of challenges you would be excited to take on.
- Speak to your most relevant skills.
- Indicate why you want to work at the company you are interviewing at.
- Specify that you would be a good fit for the job.
Don’t let this intimidating question derail your interview – use these suggested talking points to pitch yourself and stay on track!