Ohio University Office of Career Services

Elevator Speech- A 30 Second Interview by heatherpittman

The Career Fair is quickly approaching and you have probably been told to prepare.  You have perfected your résumé, researched the companies you will target, and know the types of positions that will match your skills.  How do you make sure you get the most out of the Career Fair and set yourself apart from the competition?  Creating a great “elevator speech”

An elevator speech is a clear, concise commercial about yourself.  It communicates to employers who you are, what you are looking for, and how you can benefit their company.  Generally, an elevator speech is about 30 seconds, or the time it takes you to ride from the top to the bottom of a building in an elevator.   By having an elevator speech prepared, you are ready to share this information with anyone at any time.

At the fair you can use your speech to introduce yourself to employers , ensuring you share the appropriate information.  Practice rehearsing your speech with a friend or in front of the mirror.  Practice saying it out loud so that it sounds natural.  Get comfortable with what you have to say so that you are not nervous and can breeze through it when the time comes.

You may want to include your name, year in school, major skills and career goals.  Only include personal information if it is relevant to the work for which you are applying.  Here is an example to get you started on developing your own elevator speech.


Hi, my name is Megan Hutchenson.  I am currently a senior studying Digital Media.  I have had several internships where I worked on program applications and animation with a project team.  I enjoy creating second life animation and video games.  I see that the position listed with your organization would be a perfect fit for someone with my skills.  I would love to hear more about the type of project teams in your organization.

Good afternoon, My name is Cindy Rankin.  I am a junior Environmental Biology major.  I am looking for a position that will allow me to strengthen my research and analytical skills.  During my time at Ohio University, I have begun strengthening these skills through my involvement with a local environmental council on conservation strategies for water quality and local sustainability efforts.  I read that your organization is involved in sustainability projects.  Can you tell me how someone with my experiences might fit into your organization?

Heather Pittman, Interim Assistant Director


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[…] 2. Rehearse your elevator speech. Prepare a 20-30 second introduction to use with employers. Have a clear focus on why you are here and what kind of job you are looking for. Tell them why you are interested in their company and how your specific skill set will benefit their company. (For examples of a concise elevator speech, see earlier post: Elevator Speech: A 30-second Interview). […]

Pingback by Prepare For Success: What you can do beforehand to make the of your career fair experience « Ohio University Office of Career Services

[…] Elevator speech. (See previous post on how to prepare one.) Introduce yourself in a strong, clear, natural voice, at the same time being careful not to shout. […]

Pingback by Prepare For Success: What you need to know in order to interact successfully with employers at the career fair « Ohio University Office of Career Services

this is the first time I have heard about this technique in the interview process. And I’m finding this info a great tool for my process. thank you for explaining it to me. Shawn L.

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