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Going Up

I am planning to graduate from college in less than a year, and I can only imagine the difficulties that I am going to have in finding a job. The job market is not as booming as many of us would like, so I am going to make sure that I take full advantage of any opportunity to make an impression on a potential employer. This may even mean talking to one in an elevator.

An elevator pitch is a short, creative speech that a person can prepare about herself and is usually about 30 seconds long. If the moment were right, when you were in an elevator with someone to impress, you would talk about your qualifications for a job or your career goals. This is the first step in making a positive impression and sometimes may land you an interview. It doesn’t necessarily have to be used for employment purposes. Some people may use it to acquire new clients or employees may take this opportunity to impress a CEO. According to the Tuscaloosa News, another place to use an elevator pitch is at a career fair.

According to Chris O’Leary at, your speech should leave them wanting to know more because it is just the beginning of a conversation. O’Leary had nine things that make an effective elevator pitch:
1. Concise
2. Clear
3. Compelling
4. Credible
5. Conceptual
6. Concrete
7. Consistent
8. Customized
9. Conversational

In order to make a good impression, I think you need to be confident as well. According to the Kaye Public Relations Blog, there are three steps in creating your elevator pitch. You need to know your target audience, what they want or need and why they should believe in you. If you are looking for a job, you must know which people have the most influence, understand the type of employee they want and then let them know how you would succeed in their company.

When writing your pitch, it is important to stay creative and descriptive. According to a freelancefolder blog , the writer would describe himself as “a writer who compels people to take action.” The second step is to incorporate that into what your target audience wants or needs, for example:

“Hi. I’m James. I’m a writer who compels people to take action, which means I can help you achieve better sales with great content that makes readers want to do business with you so that you can sit back, relax and watch the money pour in.”

So now that you have some advice in writing your elevator pitch, put it to good use by writing one and practicing. When you are least expecting it, you may be presented with an opportunity to use it!

Sarah Minkel


  1. Post comment

    Sarah, this blog inspires students to think outside the classic interview. I enjoyed you addition of the 10th “C”. Confidence is key to this type of pitch. A pleasure to read.


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