Stop Struggling to Explain Your Job/Career

 In Career Tips

Stop Struggling to Explain Your Job/CareerAs a job seeker and also when you are in your career, there are some times with some people where explaining what you do can be a frustrating activity.  We are all a bit too “trained” to hear job titles like- kindergarten teaching, physical therapist or dentist.  We know what those things are very easily and have had contact with many of those professions.  It’s very tidy.  We like things that are tidy because it allows the listening brain to quickly categorize what we hear and move on.

For those people who have jobs like – service coordinator, principal consultant or marketing product administrator the mention of those job titles creates confusion when communicated to others.  As the owner of that job you’re left with the task of trying to explain it without putting anyone to sleep. If you can’t explain your work to others, it will be hard to get connected for job opportunities.

The best way to approach this issue is by doing the same thing as constructing an elevator speech.  You need to consider two things when constructing an elevator speech to explain your work:

  1. VERBS – Action words.  What verbs or action explain what you do?  Taking our examples from above a principal consultant will do many of the following things:
    1. Analyzes the client’s needs
    2. Proposes corrective actions
    3. Execute and monitor the actions
    4. Provides guidance and advice.

While you may not want to string all of those actions together, putting a couple of them together would be very helpful.

  1. GOALS –  What is the goal of these actions?  In this example it can certain vary based on the client but some general goals might be:
    1. To improve employee satisfaction with the business
    2. To improve management results while increasing output
    3. To inspire managers and employees in order to increase output, profitability and make this a great place to work.

Let’s see what this might look like for a Principal Consultant: “I analyze client needs and put actions into place that will improve management result while increasing output of the organization.  In one well thought-out sentence you have explained what you do without the benefit of giving a confusing or hard to understand job title.

The great thing about this approach is that you are providing far more insight into your work than a typical job title.  It’s also more interesting and apt to spark a conversation, which means you will be more memorable.  That may not have been your goal. Yet, when the people you tell this to speak to others about you, they will provide far more information to their network than they might have otherwise.  And that is never a bad thing.  You want others to be able to talk to others about the great work you do.  That’s how you get connect to new jobs and new opportunities.

For more career tips and advice – FREE newsletter and eworkbook:  From Dorothy Tannahill-Moran – Your Career Change Agent from and

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