May Tip 2010: Telling Your Story

Learn How to Tell Your Story: The Secret To Job-Hunting Success

Do you get a little nervous and tongue-tied when asked to describe your accomplishments in job interviews, an annual performance evaluation or even at networking events? That’s normal. It’s not that you don’t have anything to say – actually you have lots to say – what’s probably making you nervous is the task of getting your story out there smoothly, briefly and with enough pizzazz to keep your listener listening.

So try a new, old approach . . . story telling. Everyone loves a good story! And people remember a good story because it creates a visual image for them. We come alive while both telling stories and listening to them. Stories are powerful, but they do take planning to avoid the pitfall of a tale that goes on and on and on.

Design Your Stories for Job Search Results

Here’s how to design your story for job search purposes. Think of an accomplishment in your professional life that you are particularly proud of and describe it in one short paragraph using the C.A.R. format.

C = Challenge (the challenge you faced)
A = Action (the action you took
R = Results (the positive results that occurred)

Do one story completely through, and then do a couple more. Create a cheat sheet for yourself with the C.A.R. format. For each story hit each of the three points briefly. Practice out loud a couple of times but don’t overdo it. You want your natural enthusiasm to come through as you’re telling the story.

Good luck out there, and if you see me along the way, tell me your best story. I’d love to hear it.


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