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Career Corner
Self-Promote Using a Powerful Pitch

Brenda Koritko -- Prepare a 15-30 second sound bite that highlights your uniqueness in a pleasant, but persuasive, manner.

You meet important job search contacts every day. The people you meet when you complete routine tasks, such as shopping or taking your children to the local ball field, may know the person you want to meet or they may have friends or family working in the industry you are targeting. Plan to use the first 30 seconds of every initial face to face meeting to deliver a brief "infomercial". Start with a smile and make eye contact before you deliver the introduction you have prepared.

Don't worry about looking too pushy. People generally like to talk about their jobs and most are more than willing to provide assistance to folks looking for opportunities in their field. In addition, since employers tend to hire qualified people that are recommended by their employees, by using this opportunity to advance your career, you have also provided an occasion for the person you are meeting to gain recognition in their workplace.

Prepare a 15-30 second sound bite that highlights your uniqueness in a pleasant, but persuasive, manner. You will grab the attention of more listeners when you prepare your introduction based on the question "What's In It for me?" from the perspective of potential employers. For example, what have you done to improve revenues, increase production, or reduce costs at your present or past jobs, or through your association with any volunteer or leisure-related organizations?

Be concise, but make the first minute count by offering information that you have determined will interest the person you are meeting. Think of the benefits you offer your clients, customers, coworkers, and supervisor. If you are not sure, ask them, you will discover that they rightfully value actions that you take for granted.

A script is an extremely helpful tool to use when you are making calls, meeting peers at an industry tradeshow, or preparing for an interview. Verbal profile statements should communicate three key pieces of information: your name, your area of expertise and related accomplishments. For example,

I am OCCUPATION NAME OR JOB TITLE who is interested in finding employment with companies that specialize in SPECIFY. Having worked (or studied) for COMPANY OR SCHOOL NAME the past NUMBER of years, I have expertise in TWO OR THREE KEY AREAS.

Cold calling can be effective, but taking time to contact the people in your existing network may be less intimidating and can bring about the same results. Practice your speech with friends and family, or record it on your answering machine, and listen to it.

Plan to practice your introduction the next time you meet a new contact. Then, plan to tweak sections that you found too chatty or sentences that did not flow. In time, you will find using your power introduction effortless and the associated rewards beneficial as you manage your career advancement.

Brenda Koritko is the author of I Manage Me Career Planning a timely ebook providing techniques to help you achieve your immediate career goals with benefits throughout your career. Secure rewarding opportunities with companies that are actually hiring. For more, visit: www.imanageme.com

© 2003 Brenda Koritko

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The views and opinions expressed in these articles do not necessarily reflect those of College Central Network, Inc. or its affiliates. Reference to any company, organization, product, or service does not constitute endorsement by College Central Network, Inc., its affiliates or associated companies. The information provided is not intended to replace the advice or guidance of your legal or medical professional.