So, Why Don’t You Tell Me About Yourself?
don’t you tell me about yourself?” is the most frequently
asked interview question. It’s a question that most
interviewees expect and the one they have the most
difficulty answering. Though one could answer
this open-ended question in a myriad of ways, the key to
answering this question or any other interview question is
to offer a response that supports your career objective.
This means that you shouldn’t respond with comments about
your hobbies, spouse, or extra curricular activities. Trust
me, interviewers aren’t interested.
Interviewers use the interview process as a vehicle to
eliminate your candidacy. Every question they ask is used to
differentiate your skills, experience,
and personality with that of other candidates. They want to
determine if what you have to offer will mesh with the
organization’s mission and goals.
answered with care, your response to the question,
“So, why don’t you tell me about yourself?” could compliment the
interviewers needs as well as support your agenda. This
is a question you should be prepared to answer as opposed
to attempting to “wing it”.
four easy steps outlined below to ensure your response will
grab the interviewers attention.
Provide a brief
attributes that are key to the open
introduction: During my 10 years’ of
experience as a sales manager, I have mastered the ability
to coach, train, and motivate sales teams into reaching
Provide a career summary of your most recent work
history. Your career summary
is the “meat” of your response, so it must support your job
objective and it must be compelling. Keep your response
limited to your current experience. Don’t go back more than
summary: Most recently, at The
Widget Corporation, I was challenged with turning around a
stagnant territory that ranked last in sales in the
Northeastern region. Using strategies that have worked in
the past, I developed an aggressive sales campaign that
focused on cultivating new accounts and nurturing the
existing client base. The results were tremendous. Within
six months my sales team and I were able to revitalize the
territory and boost sales by 65%.
Tie your response to the needs of the hiring
organization.Don’t assume that the
interviewer will be able to connect all the dots. It is
your job as the interviewee to make sure the interviewer
understands how your experiences are transferable to the
position they are seeking to fill.
tie-in: Because of my proven
experience in leading sales teams, Craig Brown suggested I
contact you regarding your need for a sales manager. Craig
filled me in on the challenges your sales department is
By asking a question you gain control of the interview.
Don’t ask a question for the sake of asking. Be sure that
the question will engage the interviewer in a conversation.
Doing so will alleviate the stress you may feel to perform.
question: What strategies are
currently underway to increase sales and morale within the
There you have it – a response that meets the needs of
the interviewer AND supports your
When broken down into manageable pieces, the question,
“So, tell me about yourself?” isn’t overwhelming. In fact,
answering the question effectively gives you the opportunity to
talk about your strengths, achievements, and qualifications for
the position. So take this golden opportunity and run with