By Julia Sosenko
BGE Career Strategy & Professional Development
Tell Me about Yourself
You know yourself better than anyone else does, but it can still be difficult to describe “who you are” in a job interview. If you feel this way, you’re not alone. Even after conducting countless interviews as a corporate recruiter, I found this question difficult to answer, until I learned of a simple framework for organizing my thoughts:
- The Basics - Start off with your name and what your current position is. If you are still pursuing your degree, say what you are studying, and also mention any employment you have at the time (if applicable.)
- Your strengths - Share a couple of your strengths (go for ones that you know would add value to this position.) If you are not comfortable with this humble brag, mention what you have been told about yourself (i.e. “my colleagues and supervisors have told me that I am X, Y, and Z.”)
- Your goal and how it lead you to this employer – This ties the answer back to the employer. Speak to your current goal in your career path (you may have many goals, so make sure to speak to one that is relevant to the position,) and how that has led you to pursue this position.
This framework will assure that you are not longwinded in your response. It will remind you to stick to what is relevant, and avoid sharing too many details or long stories about your history.
Here is an example of one way to follow this framework:
“My name is Julia Sosenko and I am currently a graduate student at Georgetown University pursuing a Master’s degree in Biotechnology. I also work part-time at the X Company in Washington D.C. as a data analyst.
I am very analytical, creative, and service oriented. Throughout my internships, academics, and volunteer work, I have been able to really expand my knowledge of the healthcare industry, and receive experience interacting with patients and hospital administrators.
I am now seeking an opportunity to work in a team-based environment where I can make a direct impact in the healthcare industry on a broad scale. I know that your consulting team is very collaborative, and that your mission is to provide practical solutions for your clients’ deepest challenges, which is why I am very excited to be considered for this position.”