Recently I was at a doctor’s appointment and was asked what I do for a living. I told my doctor I taught piano. He was very interested and asked many questions, which is typically the response I get whenever I share about my profession. However, as I later reflected on the conversation, I thought that perhaps I could have been more savvy. I often get too wordy and perhaps go into details that are unnecessary and time-consuming.
The experience prompted me to brush up on my “elevator conversation.” An elevator talk is a powerful, compelling, but concise explanation of what you do (or if you are looking for a job, what you want to be doing). Additionally, it can be crafted for different audiences or events, such as interviews or conferences. Its title refers to the length of an elevator ride, meaning that it lasts for about 20 – 30 seconds. Within that time, one should be be able to give the “big picture” about their business that is memorable and clear, sparking curiosity. The goal is for the person with whom you’re speaking to say, “tell me more!”