How to answer “Tell me something about Yourself” in an interview ?

So how do I answer, “Tell me something about Yourself” in an interview.

A lot of people goes for interviews, meet a lot of recruiters and the most common questions and the first questions they get is Tell me something about yourself?

Many people, without a thought, give answers with their biography, hobbies, parents, brothers, experiences, etc…

But sadly that’s not the correct answers the recruiters are looking for. 

Here’s let me explain.

You submitted the resume and you waited and you waited patiently and finally, you got that phone call, and now you got the interview.

You went for the interview. You’re sitting across the table and the hiring manager smiles and asks you the question…“Tell me something about yourself’

A lot of people got panic. And you don’t know what to do. You don’t know what to say. You start to stutter. And halfway through the conversation you say to yourself, “Ugh! I blew it! Why did I even say that?!”

You never get a second chance to make a first impression after that. Usually that hiring manager makes up his or her mind in the first three minutes during the interview.

So how do you make a good impression ?

tell me something about yourself

So today I’m going to share with you from a CEO perspective, from a hiring manager perspective, from an employer perspective, what is the best response to this question, “tell me something about yourself.”

You see, a lot of recruiters interviews thousands of candidates and they’re getting the same answers for each individual.

They see people kind of struggle with this question but however, there are incidents where they find unique different answers for the same questions.

So, how do you stand out and create your best answers to this questions.

This is not theory. We have collected some of the best replies,some of the best responses to this question.

In this article, I’m going to share some of the best response which you need to say towards the question ‘Tell me something about yourself’.

You’re going to get the exact formula, exactly what do you need to say and how to say it.

And now let me share you some key tips which actually works and will impressed your recruiters.

Key number one

When the hiring manager is asking you the question “tell me something about yourself”. They are not actually asking about your whole life story.

They’re not asking about your parents, your background,and your dog’s name, and what kind of cat do you have.

It is not about that. So when people hear that question, they think, “Oh, let me tell you my life story!” and twenty minutes into it, you have not talked about anything important.

So, what they’re actually asking is what are you bringing to the table. What you going to do for the company ? How will you handle the responsibility for the job you’ve applied ?

So from now on, when you hear the question,”tell me something about yourself” I want you to make the mental switch.

That equals what value could you bring to the company? What problems can you solve for the company?

That’s what they are asking. And you shouldn’t go on and on and on about all your background and all of that. No. Don’t do that.

Key number two

Be yourself, but be your best self. See, one of the mistakes people make here is they believe in the interview, “well, I just want to be myself”.

Yes, you want to be yourself, but you want to be your best self. You want to be authentic, you don’t want to be fake.

But it doesn’t mean that you just share everything. This is the first time you just sitting across the table from a hiring manager, it’s like a date. Right?

You’re just getting to know each other. This is like a coffee date. So make sure that you present your best self. Lead with your strong foot forward.

So when they are asking you the question, everything you share, any statement that you make, you always want to tie it back to what’s in it for them.

W-I-I-F-M. What’s in it for them?

So let me give you an example.

Let’s say someone is hiring and you’re applying for a social media manager position. And the hiring manager is asking you, “well, so tell me something about yourself.”

A typical response, someone might say, “well, you know, I grew up with social media and, um, I’ve used social media for a long long time my whole life actually. So I’m very familiar with it.

And just about three years ago, I thought to myself well, maybe I could actually make a living doing this.

So I started playing around with it and take on a couple clients here and there and I’ve worked with a couple people, and then, now, you know, I’m planning to get married and my fiance told me,you know, I should get a stable job.

So here I am, and, I’m looking for a company that offers good growth potential, good growth opportunity.

And this place is not too far from my home. It’s good, it’s only a ten minute drive.”

Do you think this is a good answer ?

You see the problem? Like this, all me, about me. You describing everything about yourself. That’s not what the recruiter or hiring manager wants to listen.

It’s all about that person, what they need and all of that stuff.

So, instead of rambling on about that, about my background and all this stuff, what you need to do is answers what you can do with their company.

How will your skills ads and help up the company. If you turn it into a benefit, what’s in it for them.

What could you say? Well, there is simple formula SSS. Success, Strength and Situation.

Let’s apply this formula on the same example and see how does it works.

Formula No.1- Success

Let’s say it’s the same position, social media manager, that you’re applying.

First, success. Talk about your success or things you’ve helped others achieved with your skills something like,

“I have been doing social media for the last three years and I specialize in helping companies and entrepreneurs growing their Facebook fan page.

And in the last three years alone I have helped dozens of clients in over ten different industries.

And on average I’ve been able to help my clients to really increase their engagement and grow their fan page by three to five hundred percent in less than six months. And that’s what I am passionate about.

In fact I have listed some of those clients that I’ve worked with on the reference letter“.

You see how that works? That is the kind of answers the manager is looking for.

You’re talking about your success but without bragging. It’s more to demonstrate and showcase your skill sets what are you good at.

That’s that number one, success.

Formula No.2- Strength

After answering the above you could add up some of the strengths you have what you could provide to the company.

Or when the interviews asks what are your strengths ? You could add like this.

“My real strength is my ability to truly understand what your audience wants. I pride myself on my reputation to creating engaging and compelling content that I know your audience loves and wants to share

That’s the second formula Strength.

Formula No.3- Situation

This means how does your strength apply to the position that you’re applying. How do you apply your background, your strength into the new company, the new opportunity.

You need to think in the Situation, “what I am looking for is”. So, here’s you can say.

“What I’m looking for is a company that I could add value to, that I could produce a positive return on investment for. Where I could join a strong team. Is this what ABC company is looking for ?”

You see ? At the end you ask a question.

Whoever asks a question controls the conversation. So you want to ask a question. And now the hiring manager will be like “okay, yeah, I guess that’s what I’m looking for”, or “no that’s not what we’re looking for”. And you got from there.

So it’s all in the minds. The manager will be impressed with your answers.

So, you might want to ask does that mean that I have to memorize a script of some sort?

And the answer is absolutely yes. You don’t want to go in unprepared.

In fact, I would suggest you to write it out, practice it, rehearse it many many times and be well prepared with your answers.

So when you are in front of that potential hiring manager, you are ready to go.

You need to memorize it and say it many many times and repeat it many many times so it comes across very very natural.

The last thing you have to panic and stutter. This is the most common mistakes most people make. When you stutter, you lock confidence and it creates a bad impression on the hiring manager.

So, take it easy as I’ve said in the first line think of it as a usual coffee date. Speak calmly you don’t need to hurry.

Take time and make yourself comfortable. Make sure you’re also reading the room as you’re talking. If the other person looks bored or distracted, it might be time to wrap it up. If they perk up at one part of your answer, it might be worth expanding on that topic a bit more.

Hope this article gave you some ideas about the structure on answering “tell me something about yourself” in a job interviews. If you found useful, share and comments for more career related tips.