Do you have an elevator pitch?

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Elevator pitch is the term used to describe a short speech or statement that summarises a person, a business, a product or a service as well as its value proposition.  With its roots in the idea that the summary should be succinct enough to be delivered in a brief elevator ride between floors, it’s a very useful and powerful communication tool when you’re job hunting.  The notion is that should you ever find yourself faced with someone you only have a short time to impress that you have something prepared in advance that you can say confidently, comfortably and concisely.

In this blog post we’ll share with you the key elements that make up a great elevator pitch so you can make sure you have one up your sleeve should opportunity happen to knock unexpectedly for you.  Here’s what you need to consider:

  • Identify what you want your pitch to achieve. You might find this a strange thing to say, but it’s worth pointing out that even the best elevator pitch in the world isn’t going to bag you your dream aviation job on its own, so you need to be clear about what outcome you want from your elevator pitch.  It could be that you’re going to an industry event and you simply want to make sure that you get your Unique Selling Points (USPs) accurately over to the right people.  Or it could be that you want to establish yourself as an expert in your field.  Either way, it’s essential that the purpose of your elevator pitch is crystal clear in your head.

  • Define the common problem or pain you can solve. Once you’ve identified what you want your pitch to achieve you need to give it a ‘customer’ (or prospective employer) focus.  What pain or problem could a potential employer resolve by listening to you?  It is essential that your elevator pitch is about the potential employer and what keeps them awake at night and not about you.  Doing this can be a tough call, but with the right focus and by repeating the question “what’s in this for the employer?” you’ll get there.

  • Explain why you are their best solution. When you have clearly identified the problem you may be able to solve, you need to identify if, how and why you can solve it better than anyone else.  Featuring on your strengths as well as your USPs and backing those with evidence will stand you in great stead for this task and will help your value proposition stand out from the crowd.

  • Write it down. Once you’ve got your bullet points together for your elevator pitch, write it down in full.  Keep it short, simple and to the point.  Bear in mind that you have only (in theory) a short elevator ride to do the sales pitch of your life!

  • Say it out loud. When you have your elevator pitch written down, say it out loud and time it.  It should be no more than 2 minutes long and ideally less.  Make sure the words you’ve written are words that you’re comfortable saying.  There’s no point in creating an elevator pitch that doesn’t fit your character and your personality like a glove.  It’s not a CV and to be successful it needs to be written almost as a mini-speech, rather than in perfect Queens English.

  • Tweak it, amend it, get comfy with it and then learn it. Invest the time necessary to get it spot on by tweaking it then leaving it for a while then going back to it and tweaking it again.  Once you’re pretty much 100% with what you’ve said, get comfy with it by saying it over and over again until you’ve learned it and it trips off your tongue easily and simply.

  • Use it. It goes without saying, but let us say it anyway.  When you’ve invested all of this effort and time, don’t miss an opportunity to use your elevator pitch – it could be the key to your future.

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