Professional Development Tips

Elevator Speech

According to Investopedia, an “elevator pitch is a slang term used to describe a brief speech that outlines an idea for a product, service or project. The name comes from the notion that the speech should be delivered in the short time of an elevator ride, usually 20-60 seconds (Staff, I).”

Elevator Speech has multiple uses from business to nonbusiness interactions. The only difference is tailoring each speech to different settings, similar to how a resume is tailored to each job description. Whatever the situation is, effective communication is vital in how you express yourself.

Does this scenario happen to you or look similar to what happens to you?

Scene: Career Fair
(Sara walks up to a booth of a company that she has known about and done research about.)

Sara: Hi

Potential Association: Do you want to know about our company? Or are you interested in this type of industry? What kind of position are you looking to be in?

Sara: I am not sure.

Potential Association: Well let me tell you a little about the company.

(The potential association person hands her a filer about the program. Sara stands there and listens to the person. While she is there, she is beating herself up because she let the fear of their position get the best of her.)

Sara: Okay thank you for the information.
(Sara walks away feeling disappointed because of the impression she made when she knew it could have been done differently.)

The elevator speech can raise fear in some people but is the best expression of who you are, so don’t be intimated because you know all the answers about yourself and your experience.


Express Your Passion
When you have a passion or drive for something, it makes it easy to talk about. It will also take some of the pressure off of yourself (Gregory, A).

Use the KISS Principle
The acronym KISS represents the principal keep it simple sweetie. To be able to communicate well it’s better and easier to remember if you’re not overly elaborate (What is Keep It Simple Stupid Principle). Then it also allows it to be a conversation by letting the other person ask questions if they’re interested in what you’re talking about.

Attention Grabbing
Let’s be honest when something is interesting to the person receiving information, they are going to want to lean in and listen, and not become disconnected with the conversation. Think about articles for a second the stories with the best headlines are the ones that are going to get you to read it all the way through.

You have probably heard the saying practice makes perfect, and it’s a notion you can choose to believe, but I think the more you practice, the more comfortable you will become. When you’re more comfortable, it will make it easier to talk to the other person (10 Tips For A Powerful Elevator Speech), and you can focus on other aspects such as body language and maintaining eye contact.

There are many ways that an elevator speech can be conduct to be useful in creating a relationship with people for employment or mentors. The key is finding what works best for you.


10 Tips For A Powerful Elevator Speech. (n.d.). Retrieved May 28, 2018, from

Crafting an Elevator Pitch: Introducing Your Company Quickly and Compellingly. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Gregory, A. (n.d.). Essential Tips for Writing an Effective Elevator Pitch. Retrieved May 28, 2018, from

Staff, I. (2017, December 07). Elevator Pitch. Retrieved May 28, 2018, from

What is Keep It Simple Stupid Principle (KISS Principle)? – Definition from Techopedia. (n.d.). Retrieved May 28, 2018, from

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