Convey Your Message in Three Minutes: the Successful Elevator Speech

In our daily lives, we all have to communicate to influence the actions of others.  Sales people in particular know this fact of life very well.  They have to gain someone’s attention and they may only have a few minutes to get beyond the introduction.  Similar, a job seeker maybe out and about trying to convince prospective employers that their skills and experience are worth paying for.  A three minute introduction might be the launching point of a expanded discussion down the road.

A while back, as a business librarian, I began attending networking events at various chambers of commerce.  At a monthly gathering I used to attend, we would stand around in a circle and each person would have an opportunity to give a 1 minute elevator (it was all we had time for).   Over time, I began to observe which speeches sounded the most effective. Clearly, many of the introductions went as follows, Hi, my name is Mary, I run a full-service insurance agency, please call me if you are interested in purchasing insurance”.  Once you heard enough of those, you tended to tune them out.

However, there were others that were creative, they were novel and had lots of pizazz.  The best ones were so memorable probably because they made us all laugh.

So, where I am leading with all this?  I recently picked up a book called, Small Message, Big Impact: the elevator speech effect by Terri L. Sjodin.

The importance of having a well-planned short and concise speech is not all you will learn. It provides great tips and tricks to help you get the foot in the door or pique someone’s interest to want to learn more about you.


About suzanne kaller

Business Librarian at Arapahoe Library District in the suburbs of Denver, Colorado. Engaged in business outreach and general reference serv

Posted on November 21, 2012, in business, Entrepreneurship, Jobs and Careers. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

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