Elevator Speech

Throughout this course (J409-Practicum), we have heard all about ways to pitch ourselves to possible future employers. One of the most crucial methods that we discussed was the “Elevator Speech,” which is essentially what you would say to a potential employer if you were given only a few moments to highlight your best attributes, accomplishments, and attitude.

Many people liken the elevator speech to speed dating or awkward flirting, I would tend to agree.

While these types of conversations/meetings can lead to jobs or a helpful contact that could also lead to a potential job, they can also feel quite forced and when you are on the receiving end, very rehearsed. Although I would like to emphasize that this is a much better alternative than being unprepared!

In terms of my experience with the elevator speech, I have focused in the past on being a likable person with good communication skills…not exactly going to blow any potential employers away. With that said, that all changed in September when I got my internship.

Rather than focus on achievements or skills, I simply mention my major and then tell them that I am currently interning at United States Congressman Earl Blumenauer’s Congressional Office. The end, literally I cannot get in another word ninety percent of the time after I say where I am interning. People bombard me with questions and shower with me with admiration and praise for being an intern…it is slightly strange.

As I have said in the past, I love my internship, and while I have mixed emotions about the praise that I receive for it outside of the internship itself, I know that I am lucky to be receiving it at all.

I actually accidentally put my elevator speech to the test this week when I walked into a jewelry store to ask them to open up my iPhone with a little needle they use for watches. Within about one minute of entering the store I was asked if I was interested in purchasing anything and out of habit I replied, “No, I’m an unpaid intern, so unless you are hiring, there is no way I could afford anything in these cases.” Little did I know, they were looking for holiday help and after I used my slightly rehearsed elevator speech, highlighting my internship I was told to come back in to interview formally for a position.

While I do not have the job yet, I am very hopeful that elevator speech and “being likable with communication skills” will do the trick. The task now is to get ready for the interview, present myself as positive as possible and expand on my elevator speech to the point that this time next week I will hopefully be starting a brand new job. Wish me luck!

Oh and the reason I went into the store in the first place was to get my sim card out of my phone in order to test out a phone that I am planning to flip for Christmas money. So even if I don’t get this job, at least I always have my backup job!


3 Responses to Elevator Speech

  1. alisonmoran says:

    This is too true, Haven. Whenever I mention that I’m an intern at PM, people just ramble (in a good way) on about the magazine. I usually only get in “I love it” and “Yes, it’s unpaid.” Also, great video choice. What an embarrassment to the human race!

  2. Chloe DeMars says:

    Love the video! I’ve seen it a couple times before, but it never really gets old… Congrats on the seasonal job opportunity! Talk about being in the right place at the right time + saying the right thing.

  3. pdxsx says:

    I had that same experience as an intern with Blumenauer’s office 11 years ago. I can’t tell you how many dividends that paid off.

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