What is the best way to answer the common interview question:  Tell me about yourself. There are more right ways than wrong ways to answer this question, so first, let’s dispense with the Big Wrong

Hello, I am John Self, for 27 years I crisscrossed the United States and circled the globe interviewing thousands of applicants looking for management and leadership talent. 

So, the Big Wrong answer – rambling through a complete summary of your career.  Don’t do it unless they specifically ask for that type of answer.  The interviewer has your resume and most career summary answers I’ve heard are beyond boring.

Your answer to this first question is critical.


Because this is where you set the stage for the rest of the interview. So, prepare in advance. This is not an answer you want to compose on the fly in front of the interviewer.

Tell them an engaging story about your skills, your strengths, your successes, and, most importantly, your values. Use information or illustrations that will help the interviewer connect with you.  Your answer should take about a minute, no more than 90 seconds.  Finish it with a statement that affirms your commitment to be accountable for what you do, and how you treat your team. 

In other words, don’t show up just to answer questions.  Prepare, rehearse, and then convince and convert.

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