Tell us something about yourself
The sentence “Tell us about yourself” has paralyzed almost every one of us during our interviews, especially at the beginning of our careers, when we were just stepping on the job search road.
It’s not always clear what you have to say. What does the employer expect? Is it a tricky question or not?
It’s not even a question.
I remember when I was early in my career answering that question, I was basically repeating what’s on my CV.
Especially when I didn’t even have any work experience, I was in my senior year of university, and basically, as I thought at the time, there was nothing to brag about.
Well, this is a big and quite common mistake. Therefore, it is worth remembering that while you are not a Hollywood star of the first magnitude, during an interview you do not need to pour out your autobiography. Nobody needs it, and it won’t help you during the interview.
In fact, this question is also not the best one that a recruiter can ask, but that’s another topic.
Thanks to this question, you can talk about your strengths, the achievements that will be useful for this position.
How to prepare for “Tell me about yourself”
- Write down what you are doing now, or what you loved doing from childhood or university time.
- Read carefully a job description and learn more about a company itself, products, services, culture, and job description to understand where are you applying.
at the same time think if it has any kind of response in your gut
- Think of your strengths, which you can confirm with facts and examples. (your achievements, projects, numbers). What did you like the most during the project?
In the case of candidates with no work experience, you can give examples of non-profit projects, jobs, research while studying, “case studies”.
- Connect the dots, which means combining the three previous points into one answer. Make sure that your answer takes no more than 2-3 minutes.
Make the most out of this question, it is the opportunity to underline your experience and what you can give to the company.
It is possible that later the recruiter will ask you more questions, clarifying the details, so be prepared and rely on the facts.
Answer Formula 1:
[Your current activities] + [Your achievements, which you can relate to the job position *(facts)] + [connect motivation to the job position goals]
Answer Formula 2:
[Your past experience] + [Your achievements, which you can relate to the job position *(facts)] + [connect motivation to the job position goals]
Tell us about yourself Examples
Let’s jump into some examples:
“Currently I am working as a junior sales specialist, I gained experience working with b2c clients in the YYY industry. For the last 3 months, I had X phone calls and made Y deals. I managed to close sales for project A 1 week before the deadline. My responsibilities include not only sales but also solving customer issues. On average, I managed to close 50 issues per day. I see the opportunity to grow as a Customer Support specialist at your organization.”
“I am currently in the last year of my Masters’ studies at YYY university. I have always been curious about writing and storytelling. For the last year, I blog on the weekly basis about healthy eating and yoga. I am also a freelance content creator. For the last half a year being a freelance writer, I created Y articles for such projects/startups as A, B, C. Also, I took an online Z course to improve my skills in SEO.
I analyzed your content strategy and wanted to be part of your team as a junior content specialist and to work on your company projects. “
- Write down your answer
- Rehearse and practice it before the interview, but do not memorize it, this is not a verse at school
- Do not go into details of exactly how you achieved something, facts, statistics, you do not need to describe the process in detail. If the employer wants to know the details, there will be more questions for you
- “Tell me about yourself” is not the opportunity to talk about your personal life
For an in-depth look at everything check our video on youtube: