The Elevator Pitch

By Martin Buckland - Executive Career Management Professional

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An Elevator Pitch (also known as a Networking Speech) is your chance to make a lasting impression. It serves as a great job search tool that should be practiced and refined constantly. It can be used in a variety of settings; casually while riding the bus, in the doctor’s office, or waiting in a shopping line. More professional settings include: networking events, coffee meetings with hiring influencers, at industry conventions, during cold calls to potential employers, at job interviews and career fairs where it is imperative you make a quick, memorable and decisive impression.

The saying, “Practice makes perfect” is true. The more polished, rehearsed and confident you become, the better an impression you will make. The Elevator Pitch provides the listener with succinct information - a snap shot of your past and a snap shot of your future – in 60 seconds or less.

Your Elevator Pitch should consist of words frequently used in your vocabulary and articulated slowly enough for listeners to comprehend the message. It emphasizes your uniqueness, your competitive advantage and the benefits you will provide upon your new appointment, coupled with a snap shot of your career history.

An elevator pitch is as essential as a business card. You need to be able to articulate who you are, what you do, what you are looking for, and how you can help others.

What is your hook?

A client of mine uses the following line which consistently draws attention: “I am bi-lingual, I speak I.T. and I speak business, I act as the conduit between the two functions.” I’ve watched audience reactions as this elevator pitch was used and it definitely grabs their attention becoming an exciting and mesmerizing moment focused solely on that individual.

How long should it be? Approximately 150 to 225 words.

Any longer and it will drag on beyond the 60 second attention span. Keep it brief, make it powerful, and leave a long lasting impression.


Your energy, motivation and confidence must be displayed either by the way you carry yourself in-person or through your verbal inflections over the telephone.


So what exactly is the recipe for a successful elevator pitch?

Step 1: Start with your name. Hello, I’m Martin Buckland.

Step 2: Explain what you do. I make my clients look seductive! I’m a multiple certified career management professional specializing at the $100,000 plus senior executive or those with ambition to be $100,000, plus law enforcement officers, and sales and marketing executives.

During the last 21 years I have built Elite Resumes into becoming a competitive company with clients in over 60 countries. We have worked with the Brother of the Sultan of Oman, 3 CEO’s of Canada’s financial institutions, and C-level executives across North America and beyond. I enjoy my work; making people stand above the competition in their job search is my forte!

Step 3: Concisely explain what you are looking for. I’m seeking clients looking for new opportunities at the senior executive level, Police Chiefs and Deputies looking for a new career upon retirement, and sales leaders with an outstanding record of revenue growth.

If you know of anyone wanting to enhance their careers, please consider referring them. My value add tag line: “I work exclusively with the $100,000 plus executive and those who aspire to be business leaders.”

Step 4: Tell the audience how they can help. I have a considerable database of people in influential, decision-making positions in all business areas and functions across the world with an emphasis on North America. I am more than willing to share my contacts with you.

Step 5: Finish with your name. Thank you for listening, my name is Martin Buckland.


This is my 210 word elevator pitch. Notice the hook? I make people look seductive! It’s a compelling, wake up call and certainly makes people listen to what follows. I have successfully enticed them to listen.

If you want to network successfully, you need an Elevator Pitch. Write it down and practice your speech in front of the mirror and with friends. Record it and listen to it. The first few times it may be uncomfortable for you, however, it gets easier. Are you comfortable with the verbiage? Is the voice tone and inflection right? Are you confident and engaging? Refine if needed.


About  the Author

Martin Buckland, President of Elite Resumes, is a leading resume writer, career coach and job search strategist with a global clientele. Martin currently holds the following certifications: Certified Professional Branding Strategist, Certified Professional Resume Writer, Certified Employment Interview Professional, Job and Career Transition Coach, Certified Job Search Trainer and Co-Pilot Executive Coach. Visit my website at

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