Here’s What You Say When An Interviewer Says, ‘Tell Me About Yourself’

Interviews are uncomfortable, weird, and awkward. Related: PROVEN: 5 Ways To Land An Interview With Limited Experience You put on a smile and a happy face pretending like you’re having a conversation with your best friend, all the while participating in a process that could determine rather or not you get to eat, buy clothes, and keep a roof over your head. It’s a mystery to me why someone thought that it would be a good idea to put two total strangers into a room and have one interrogate the other. Who in their right mind thought of this? How about a date before heading to second base? Nonetheless, it is what it is. The one interview question most people say they have the hardest time answering is: “Tell me about yourself.” This is typically the first question that’s always asked in an interview. This question is asked because it sets the tone of ‘Brand You.’ It lets the interviewer know who you are, what you’re about, and what motivates you. This question is important because the interviewer will use it as a control mechanism to determine your truthfulness and consistency in the way you answer the upcoming questions. Here is an example of how you would answer this question:


“(1.) I’m a graduate of Tulane University. I majored in Business Management and I’ve always been intrigued by business ever since I read Donald Trump’s book The Art of the Deal. (2.) Since starting my career five years ago, I’ve worked for X Enterprise, Y Enterprise, and Z Enterprise. My proudest moment in my career thus far was establishing a joint venture with 123 Company. (3.) Moving forward I’m looking to further my career as a business analyst in an environment where my knowledge of joint ventures can be best utilized.”
If you answer the question ‘Tell me about yourself’ as outlined above, the interviewer may likely drop their pen and give you the job right on the spot. Answering that question as outlined above establishes credibility, illustrates leadership, and it lets the interviewer know exactly what they’ll be getting if they hire you. Here’s why answering this question as outlined above is effective:
  1. Tell them a personal story - Point one quickly and succinctly lets the interviewer know who you are and why you chose your profession, while also backing up your story with a heart-warming, testimonial.
  1. Tell them a professional story - Point two allows you to name drop and highlight your experience. This gives the interviewer insight into the results they can expect if they hire you.
  1. Paint the future - Point three positions you as a leader who sees a clear path and knows how to get there.
Job interviews don’t have to be as painful as we perceive them. The key in answering any interview question is to provide answers that highlight your experience, expertise’ and leadership skills. This post was originally published at an earlier date.

Related Posts

The Secret To Acing A Job Interview What To Say In Your Thank You Letter Besides ‘Thank You’ Interview Cheat Sheet: 8 Tips For A Flawless Interview

About the author

Michael Price is the author of What Next? The Millennial's Guide to Surviving and Thriving in the Real World, endorsed by Barbara Corcoran of ABC's Shark Tank. He is also the founder of Conquer Career Course, where he teaches students how to increase their salary, build a career with longevity and become unemployment-proof. View the trailer below:    
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by a CAREEREALISM-approved expert. You can learn more about expert posts here. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

In this week's episode of "Well This Happened", we want to know what you would do if your co-worker took credit for the work you did...right in front of your colleagues AND boss!

We want YOU to be the career coach and tell us which one is the RIGHT answer!

Think you know? Vote below, and stay tuned for later this week when we announce the right answer (and why the other ones are wrong).

SHOW MORE Show less

If you saw our first video, you might have heard about the awkward situation one of our viewers, Cam submitted. He's been working at a job for awhile, but recently overheard a hiring manager making fun of a candidate with autism right after an interview-not only awkward, but VERY unprofessional!

SHOW MORE Show less

In this week's episode of "Well This Happened", we want to know what you would do if witnessed a hiring manager at your organization making fun of a candidate who they had just interviewed who had autism.

We want YOU to be the career coach and tell us which one is the RIGHT answer!

Think you know? Vote below, and stay tuned for later this week when we announce the right answer (and why the other ones are wrong).

SHOW MORE Show less

Starting a family is one of the biggest milestones in a person's life. It's in those first few months when a parent can really bond with their newborn and make lifelong memories. However, for some new dads, it can be difficult to juggle being a new parent while remaining dedicated to their career.

Fortunately, some companies have generous paternity leave policies that give new dads the ability to take time off of work to stay home with their child.

SHOW MORE Show less

There are LOTS of questions around resume dos and don'ts. There's so much advice out there that it can be overwhelming to try and figure out what's the correct answer.

During our weekly live Office Hours on YouTube, two of our coaches, Ariella Coombs and J.T. O'Donnell, answer questions live from viewers related to their job search, career success, on the job situations and more.

We complied a simple list of what we find to be the most common questions our coaches get about resumes. We hope you find this helpful.

Let's start with the basics...

SHOW MORE Show less

Back in March, we made the hard decision to change our private Facebook group of over 37 THOUSAND members to a fee-based only platform.

SHOW MORE Show less

In this week's episode of "Well This Happened", we want to know what you would do if a recruiter called you a day EARLY for your phone interview (and you were NOT PREPARED!)

We want YOU to be the career coach and tell us which one is the RIGHT answer!

Think you know? Vote below, and stay tuned for later this week when we announce the right answer (and why the other ones are wrong).

SHOW MORE Show less

If you caught our last video in our latest series, "Well This Happened..." you heard about the problem one of our viewers is having with their co-worker. To recap, they have a colleague that overshares a little too much, and they weren't sure how to go about addressing this. We had some great responses from our viewers on how they think our friend should handle this. Check out the answer below and let us know if you guessed right or not!

SHOW MORE Show less

Negotiating salary can be a scary, intimidating experience. However, if you go in prepared, it doesn't have to be that way - you can confidently negotiate for a salary you deserve. But how?

SHOW MORE Show less