At a recent meeting, a colleague referred to our department as the one that “gets students jobs”. My heart sank.
My team and I have worked tirelessly over many years to reimagine career services, and yet many, even those who know us well, assume an old paradigm. Language matters. And as an institutional leader, it is my responsibility to educate and redefine something as basic as what we do every day. What is our job? How do we describe our purpose and help others to tell our story? Ever since this meeting, I have been obsessed with finding a way to do this simply, elegantly, and clearly.
Thank goodness I stumbled upon a Podcast by Clay Hebert, a marketing strategist who has developed brilliant framework for introducing yourself to others in six words or less. As he points out, most of us introduce ourselves to an average three people a day, which adds up to about 80,000 people in a lifetime. Doesn’t it make sense to do this in a way that makes you feel proud and confident? Don’t you want to engage in a conversation that is meaningful and relevant? It turns out that when it comes to introductions, less is more. Please tune in, as it will be worth your time. To start, use his “I help X to do Y” formula and you will rethink the way you introduce yourself, talk about your work or career objective, and help others to communicate your message in an effective way that makes everyone look good.