Creative Leadership

Why You Need an “Elevator Pitch” For Your Life

If you work in the entertainment industry you know about “elevator pitches.” Essentially, the idea here in Hollywood is that if you meet a big producer or movie studio executive in an elevator, you should be able to deliver a summary of your movie idea in the time span of an elevator ride, or roughly 1-2 minutes. If that short pitch is done right, the producer or executive will want to know more – and theoretically invite you to a meeting. Now, here’s a better idea:

You need an elevator pitch for your life and your dream.  After all, you never know when you’ll meet someone who could offer you a dream job or make your dream happen. That moment might happen at a restaurant, movie theater, church, shopping mall – it doesn’t matter. You should always be ready to articulate where you want to go with your life in a compelling way that inspires people.

So how do you craft an elevator pitch for your life? Remember, you only have 1-2 minutes, so start by answering these questions:

1) Who are you?
2) What do you do?
3) Where do you want to go?
4) How will you get there?
5) How can you help them?

For instance, your pitch might be:

“Hello, (Who are you?) I’m Phil Cooke, and (What do you do?) I work as a warehouse supervisor for our company. But (Where do you want to go?) I’ve always had a gift for motivating and inspiring people, and that’s why my goal is a sales career. As a result, (How will you get there?) I’ve been taking classes in marketing at the local university, and I’m being mentored by one of the top sales pros in the area. (How can you help them?) I’ve noticed that in our Southern region, we have a significant turnover in sales people. I grew up in that area, so I know how they think and respond. That’s why I believe if I was a sales professional there, I could make a significant, positive impact on this company.”

Wow. You just got the boss’s attention.  You did your homework, expressed yourself clearly and quickly, and remembered to include “What’s in it for him.”  He or she will get off that elevator asking a lot of questions about you, the sales department, and why you’re not in it.

An elevator pitch for your life. Write it up. You never know when you’ll need it.

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