On Selling Yourself

No, not on eBay. I’m talking about getting yourself noticed by people who don’t know you — but really should because you’re bright, intelligent and going to change the world, right? Right!

Over in the iSchool bubble, I’ve been hearing a lot of references to the “one-minute elevator speech.” It’s a take on a type of business pitch and goes a little something like this:

Picture yourself entering an elevator in a tall building. You’re on the ground floor. Someone important walks in. Maybe it’s the head librarian of the place you’d love to work or a potential client you’d like to woo. Maybe it’s a mother-in-law. Whoever you choose, they are heading to the top floor and you’ve now got one minute to get them to remember you. Your must grab their attention. They should know who you are, what it is that you do, and why it is important. Essentially, this presentation could be used in any situation, like a job interview.

While social media is great for (un)friending people who work in the field, face-to-face networking takes a lot of practice. That and confidence. The advantage of connecting to others in person, though, is that they can’t just click Mute, Ignore or Delete on you. What was once a norm is now a perk of the non-virtual reality.


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