Most interviews start with the ambiguous “Tell me about yourself” request from the hiring manager. It’s not inherently designed to be a tricky question, but it can become one if you aren’t prepared to address it. Doing so takes a bit of preparation, research, and a well formulated interview pitch.
Know yourself as well as you know the company
A surprising amount of people struggle when it comes to speaking about themselves. You may be able to chat all day long about the industry and all the technology therein, but how well do you actually know yourself and your goals?
The main trick to responding to the “Tell me about yourself’ request is to prepare a three arc pitch (no longer than sixty seconds) that you can present to the hiring manager. Research the company, its goals, and the essential responsibilities of the position and prepare to address each one of them within your pitch. Try asking yourself these three questions:
What got you to this point?
This is a quick breakdown of your past work experience and the skills you have learned as you have progressed through your career. Make sure to highlight the skills that are most relevant to the job. Leave out any information that is not relevant to the company or the position.
Why are you here?
Incorporate your reasons for wanting to work for this particular company into your pitch. Employers are hesitant to hire people that show little or no interest in the company itself. If you like a particular aspect about how the company works, then let the hiring manager know.
Where do you want to end up?
Everyone has goals. The hiring manager wants to know how his or her company fits into your career path, both presently and in the future. End your interview pitch by telling the interviewer how this company will help you accomplish your goals and vice-versa.
With a bit of preparation and thought, your response to the “Tell me about yourself” request can be a great start to any interview. Not all interview questions are easy to answer, but you can be sure that our recruiters have pretty much heard them all. They can help you prepare for an interview and even give you additional information about the company and hiring manager. Contact them today.
By Kevin Withers