It is the standard opening question of a job interview: "tell me about yourself". By answering this question fluently, you will make a good first impression straight away. Staffing specialist Walters People shares some tips to formulate a witty answer.
It may seem an obvious question - you know yourself pretty well, right? Nevertheless, it is important to think in advance about how exactly you want to answer this question, and what characteristics of yourself you want to bring out. If you have to think about this during the interview, you risk getting nervous and not coming up with a clearly formulated answer. Practice out loud at home to make sure your answer is not too short or too long.
Start with the basics
When you introduce yourself, it is best to start with practical information. Your name, age and place of residence are essential information for the recruiter. Do not hesitate to mention these things out loud, even if they are mentioned on your CV.
You obviously shouldn't expose your entire private life, but a personal touch is certainly welcome when you introduce yourself. Your hobbies and interests will help the interviewer get a picture of you as a person. Also think about fun facts about yourself. Do you speak a little Italian because you've spent your summers in Italy during your childhood? Feel free to share that! Unique traits like these are always nice to hear and also help break the ice.
What is your educational background and how did you start your career? Where did you gain the most experience? Did you perhaps make a career switch at some point? At this point, the recruiter would like to find out what professional path you have already followed. Go over your CV in broad strokes, but don't get lost in details. Your interviewer will have plenty of opportunity during the rest of the interview to delve deeper into the work experiences that are most relevant to the position.
Finally, the recruiter wants to hear how you ended up in the chair opposite him. Explain how you found the vacancy - were you searching intensively, or did you come across an advert quite by chance? Name the reasons that convinced you to apply for the position. Do not only think about the tasks, but also about the company itself. Did the company culture appeal to you, or were you already fond of the products or services the company offers? Feel free to share this with the interviewer, as this could mean a good match between you and the company!
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