Tips from Finance Recruiters: The Elevator Pitch

nailing your elevator pitch

Finance recruiters meet with job seekers every day, most of whom would love to know how to craft a great elevator pitch.  Make no mistake, that 30 seconds is a real asset in moving you towards your career goals.  You’ll use your elevator pitch in networking events, in answer to the interview question, “Tell me a little bit about yourself” and when you meet with a finance recruiter.  Here are some tips to help you master your elevator pitch and nail your first impression.

How Long is an Elevator Pitch, Really?

And now for something really scary – research tells us that it only takes 7 seconds for someone to form a first impression about you.  That initial assessment is based on nonverbal body cues.  So let’s get down to the nitty-gritty (as a side note, we feel that the phrase “nitty-gritty” is not used nearly enough).  You truly have less than 30 seconds to make that first impression.  You need to make sure that your listener walks away with a soundbite that encapsulates your strengths and goals.

No pressure.

Emotion Engages Buying Behavior
When you engage someone emotionally, you increase attention and consequently retention of information.  If your finance recruiter or networking contact meets 10 people a day or at an event, they will remember the people who made an emotional impact.  What does this mean for your elevator pitch?

  • You need to cover three areas – where you’ve been, what you are doing now and future career goals.
  • Don’t simply list your past experience, “I’ve worked for four years as a comptroller and three years as an accounting manager.”
  • Your elevator pitch needs to be a compelling story.
  • Personalize it and ensure that it is concise.
  • “While my foundation is in comptrolling, my creativity and passion for leadership led me to management accounting.”
  • The second example makes you an active participant in your career story and shows how your choices have led you to where you are today.

Essentially, you’re connecting the dots for your audience, helping them understand that there was a purpose behind each of your decisions.

Tip: For insight on how to networking effectively read “4 Tips for Networking.”

Love and Passion
No, you’re not writing a romance novel.  What you’re doing is identifying one thing about your role or industry that you’re passionate about.  When you use the words “love” and “passion” it makes you memorable, particularly when it comes from an authentic place.  Find something that inspires you currently, or has inspired you in the past and speak to that.

Elevator Pitch Example
Here’s an example of a possible elevator pitch.  Remember, personalize it and make it your own.

“I started as an accounts clerk in the retail sector.  I was determined to learn everything there was to know about accounting processes and particularly wanted to understand their connection to generating profits.  I realized that I had a knack for identifying ways to make process improvements to the accounting cycle.  So I parlayed that into my next job as an accounting manager.  I’ve also had great mentors along the way and I think that’s why I sought out a leadership role as well.  I wanted to help others grow their careers the same way my mentor helped me.”

You could also end your elevator pitch by identifying where you see yourself next.

Key Takeaways
Finance recruiters will tell you that the key to crafting a strong elevator pitch is to remember that you’re offering the listener a snapshot of your career story.  Like any narrative, there needs to be a past, present and future.  Use language that engages.  Make sure that you talk about what inspires you.  Practice it with friends and let them give you honest feedback.  What seems clear to you, may not be as obvious to the listener.  And since you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression, it makes sense to take the time to craft your elevator pitch correctly.

Your Next Step
No one should walk the job search or hiring road alone. At Clarity Recruitment we help others realize their success through a process that marries proprietary technology with unwavering commitment. Contact us today to take control of your career, or to partner with us to hire well.

Clarity Recruitment, connecting exceptional people with remarkable companies.

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