Have you ever had an interviewer ask you this very question? While it should be simple — you know all about yourself, after all — responding in the context of the job can be challenging. Below, we explain exactly what it means and list the steps to answering successfully.
Preparing for an interview can not only be stressful but nerve-wracking. It’s common to consider the list of questions an interviewer may ask you on the big day. Well, put this question right on that list.
“Tell me about yourself” is one of the most common questions an interviewer can ask you. Perhaps this may even be the first question the interviewer may ask, so it’s very crucial. The way you respond will determine the interviewer’s first impression of you, and if you succeed in getting the job. Why? Well, this question helps the interviewer to evaluate your potential for the company. But there is no need to worry! We will set out the all-important steps to answering this question.
Before the interview, you want to make sure you plan out an answer. Consider a brief script in your head with keywords to map out your response. For example, leading with your current role, then your employment history or previous experience, and then a clean segue into what you hope to achieve next.
Keep it Professional
Make sure your response is very professional. This will not only improve your chances of getting the job, but it will also help you sound very educated. Depending on your answer, the employer will think about how you will handle future conversations with people on the job.
It only takes seven seconds to make a first impression on someone, so the saying “first impressions count” rings very true in this scenario. During the interview, you want to present yourself well, uphold strong eye contact and answer clearly.
They say practice makes perfect, and this could be the difference between you impressing the interviewer and bombing the interview entirely. Consider practicing your answers in front of the mirror, or doing a pretend interview with a family member or friend for feedback. Working to improve your interviewing skills can certainly boost your success rate.
4 Reasons Why
Reduces stress and anxiety
Boosts your confidence
Learn techniques to help you resolve a problem
Helps your body language
Keep it Short
Your response should be concise and relevant to the role. The last thing you want is the interviewer checking their watch or tapping their finger when you answer, so ensure that your response is no more than 1 minute long.
What NOT to Say
When most people hear this question, they immediately assume that the interviewer is asking about their personal life. Some interviewees have made the mistake of detailing how many siblings they have or their favourite TV show, but this is not what the interviewer is requesting.
Interviewer: So, tell me about yourself?
Interviewee: My name is Tom and I’m 29 years old. My favorite basketball team is the Lakers because Lebron is the best player. I love watching anime and I have three siblings.
What to Say
When an interviewer asks you to tell them about yourself, they want to hear a summarized version about your skills, experience, education, and qualifications.
Craft a coherent response through thought and planning. What are you going to say?
Mention your education to boost your chances of getting hired. It may even be a requirement for the job.
Explain what you do for a living.
Describe your skills to set you apart from the competition.
Experience and qualifications
List your experience in the context of the role. Your qualifications may give you an advantage.
Interest in the company
Explain your interest in the firm to show willingness and drive.
Taking the above tips into account, here is a succinct and well-thought-out answer to the question: “Tell me about yourself?”
I graduated with a master’s degree in entrepreneurship and innovation nearly six years ago. I work as a business consultant and offer advice to a wide variety of firms. One of my key accomplishments is helping the business to raise over $180,000 in funds in the last five years. As a creative thinker, I enjoy problem-solving and can collaborate well with my peers to hit targets. I have five years’ experience in consulting and possess a Certified Business Consultant Professional certificate and a Professional Certificate in Team Leadership certificate. I’d like to take the next step in my career by joining a well-established company such as this; that’s why I’m currently looking for a new opportunity.