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    How to Answer Tell Me About Yourself [in 2022]

    Going to an interview? You’re bound to get asked the most common interview question: “tell me about yourself.” Learn how to answer with our full guide!

    How to Answer "Tell Me About Yourself" [in 2022]

    6 April7 min read

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    All interviews start with the same question:

    Tell me about yourself

    But when you think about it, it’s a really open-ended question.

    Do you start with your background? Do you go through whatever’s on your resume? Or do you introduce yourself more as a person than a professional?

    Worried and unsure of how to answer?

    Relax, you’re not the only one!

    Most people struggle with this question.

    Here’s some good news, though: there’s a very easy way to answer the dreaded interview question.

    Want to learn how?

    Read on to find out:

    Why do interviewers ask this question? How to answer “tell me about yourself” with a simple formula 4 essential tips to keep in mind when answering 3 sample answers for experienced professionals, students, and prospective students

    Let’s take it one step at a time

    How to Answer “Tell Me About Yourself” Interview Question

    To better answer the question, you first need to understand why they ask it in the first place.

    Hint: the interviewer isn’t looking for your life story, or what you had for dinner last night.

    Rather, the question is a way for them to ease into the actual interview and get a general idea of what you’re all about.

    It acts as an introduction and depending on how you answer, it’s going to help the interviewer decide what to ask next.

    This is your opportunity to leave a lasting first impression.

    Give a good answer, and the interviewer will enthusiastically bombard you with more questions.

    Answer wrong, though, you’ll instantly be labeled as the “OK Candidate.”

    So, what’s a “good answer?”

    Well, it’s actually pretty straightforward. A good answer should be

    Tailored - Applying for an accounting job? The recruiter doesn’t care about your work experience as a real estate agent. Your answer should be tailored to the job you’re applying for.Based on Experience & Achievements - Your answer should be super-specific. Don’t just say “so um, my name’s Mike and I’m a sales manager.” Your answer should consist of background (what did you study?), top achievements (how do you stand out from the other candidates), and interests (why are you applying for this job?).


    Structured - Your answer should follow a simple, easy-to-follow format. We’d recommend sticking to the tried-and-tested “Past-Present-Future” formula. Meaning, structure you answer as follows:The past - what is your background and relevant work experience? How did you get to where you are now?The present - what is your current role? What do you do and what are your top accomplishments?The future - what are you looking to do next? Why are you interested in the position?

    Keeping these tips in mind, here’s what a good answer to “tell me about yourself” would look like:

    Correct Answer:

    “Sure, so, my name is Joe and I am 27 years old.

    For the past 5 years, I’ve been working as a business analyst at Company X and Y.

    I have some background in data analysis, with a degree from University XY. What really got me into the field, though, is the internship I did at Company Z.

    Throughout my career, I’ve noticed that I’ve always been good with numbers and handling data.

    For example, when I was working at Company X, I led a project for migrating all operations data to a new data warehousing system to cut down on costs. The new solution was a much better fit for our business, which eventually led to savings of up to $200,000 annually.

    Moving forward, I hope to expand my experience across different industries. Particularly fintech, which is why I’m interested in your company..”

    Here’s what’s done right:

    The answer is tailored. Joe doesn’t stray off-topic, he talks about his experience as a business analyst, and his past achievements in working with data.The answer is based on experiences and achievements. Joe talks about his work experience as a business analyst, and covers some of his top achievements.The answer is structured right - past, present, future.

    Sounds simple enough, right?


    Now that we’ve covered the basics on how to answer “tell me about yourself,” we’re going to cover several essential tips that can help you stand out even more.

    So, let’s get started.

    4 Essential Tips on Answering “Tell Me About Yourself”

    1) Keep It Professional and Brief

    When answering, try to keep it under 1-2 minutes, at most.

    No, the HR manager doesn’t want to know your entire life story.

    They don’t care about which kindergarten you went to, how your first internship went, or what you studied in high school.

    You want to stick to your main selling points that are relevant for the job.

    Pro tip: If you can see that the interviewer is getting distracted, you should take that as a sign that it might be time to wrap up.

    Source : novoresume.com

    How to Answer “Tell Me About Yourself” in an Interview

    You know a lot about you, but when the interviewer says, “So tell me about yourself,” it can be pretty stressful. We’ve got a guide with tips and examples to help you prepare.


    A Complete Guide to Answering “Tell Me About Yourself” in an Interview (Plus Examples!)

    by Stav Ziv

    Westend61/Getty Images

    When career coach Theresa Merrill does mock interviews with her clients, she always leads with, “Tell me about yourself.” It’s good practice because that’s often the very first thing an interviewer will ask you to do—whether you’re having a preliminary phone screen, speaking to your prospective boss, or sitting down with the CEO during a final round.

    SEARCH OPEN JOBS ON THE MUSE! See who’s hiring here, and you can even filter your search by benefits, company size, remote opportunities, and more. Then, sign up for our newsletter and we’ll deliver advice on landing the job right to you.

    Even though it’s one of the most common interview questions, “it almost always stumps them,” Merrill says. It might seem like an easy win—after all, you know all about yourself!—but responding to this invitation to talk about you in the context of a job interview can feel stressful and complicated. “It’s challenging because it is broad, open-ended,” Merrill points out. You might be thinking: Um, what do you want to know? How am I supposed to pick what to share out of my entire life story right now?

    Luckily, you can prepare in advance and use this common opening prompt to your advantage, setting the stage for a successful interview.

    Why Interviewers Ask It

    A Simple Formula for Answering “Tell Me About Yourself”

    8 More Tips for Answering “Tell Me About Yourself”

    Tailor Your Answer to the Role and Company

    Keep It Professional

    But Inject Some Passion Into Your Answer (if You Feel Comfortable)

    Be Succinct (and Definitely Don’t Recite Your Resume)

    Practice (But Don’t Memorize)

    Know Your Audience Keep It Positive

    Remember This Is Often Your First Impression, and It Matters

    “Tell Me About Yourself” Sample Answers

    Why Interviewers Ask It

    As with any interview question, the key to crafting an impressive answer is understanding why people are asking in the first place.

    “It lets them ease into the actual interviewing,” says leadership development coach Alina Campos, founder of Rising. “Often when the conversation starts it’s a lot of small talk and it’s a way to transition into it,” especially for less seasoned recruiters or hiring managers. “The interviewee’s nervous but the interviewer’s trying to get their bearings [too].”

    It’s also a great starting point that can help inform the direction of the interview, says Muse career coach and CareerSchooled founder Al Dea: “Depending on what you say it’s going to help them figure out the next question,” which might help start a chain effect of follow-up questions and lend an easy flow to the conversation.

    Beyond serving as an icebreaker and transition, Dea says, this introductory question also helps recruiters and hiring managers accomplish what’s often one of their major goals in the hiring process: getting to know you.

    If you answer it well, the interviewers will begin to find out why you’re the best candidate for this job, in terms of hard skills and experience as well as soft skills. It’s a great opportunity to demonstrate that you can communicate clearly and effectively, connect with and react to other humans, and present yourself professionally.

    There are plenty of times when you’ll hear these exact words: “Tell me about yourself.” But interviewers might have their own versions of the prompt that are asking pretty much the same thing, including:

    I have your resume in front of me but tell me more about yourself.

    Walk me through your resume.

    I’d love to hear more about your journey.

    Tell me a little bit more about your background.

    A Simple Formula for Answering “Tell Me About Yourself”

    Lily Zhang, Manager of Graduate Student Professional Development at the MIT Media Lab and a writer for The Muse, recommends a simple and effective formula for structuring your response: present, past, future.

    Present: Talk a little bit about what your current role is, the scope of it, and perhaps a big recent accomplishment.Past: Tell the interviewer how you got there and/or mention previous experience that’s relevant to the job and company you’re applying for.Future: Segue into what you’re looking to do next and why you’re interested in this gig (and a great fit for it, too).

    This isn’t the only way to build your response, of course, and you can tweak it as you see fit. If there’s a particularly potent story about what brought you into this field, for example, you might decide to start with that “past” story and then get into what you’re doing in the present.

    Whatever order you pick, make sure you ultimately tie it to the job and company. “A good place to end it is to give a transition of this is why I’m here,” Dea says. You want to be absolutely certain your interviewer is left with the impression that it “makes sense that [you’re] sitting here talking to me about this role.”

    8 More Tips for Answering “Tell Me About Yourself”

    Source : www.themuse.com

    How to Answer, 'Tell Me About Yourself,' in an Interview

    Knowing how to answer, "Tell me about yourself," is critical for job interviewees. Read our tips on how to nail your response.

    How to Answer, ‘Tell Me About Yourself,’ in a Job Interview

    By Robert Half on February 4, 2022 at 2:00am

    “Tell me about yourself.” It’s one of the most common (and tricky) job interview questions. Even so, many job seekers don’t take the question seriously, thinking it’s just an icebreaker meant to put them at ease.

    But they should carefully consider their response, because “tell me about yourself” is more than a throwaway opener for most interviewers. When hiring managers pose this open-ended question, they’re hoping candidates will offer insight about their goals and priorities, which will give them a better sense of who each job candidate really is.

    And that’s not all: Interviewers also ask this question to evaluate how confident interviewees are, which in turn gives them a view of how new hires might present themselves to customers, clients and colleagues if they get the job.

    As a job seeker, knowing how to answer, “tell me about yourself,” gives you a great opportunity to spotlight the job skills and experience that make you the ideal candidate for the job. And because it’s a question that many hiring managers lead with, it's also your way to start off on the right foot. Here are a few more job interview tips to help you nail your response:

    What you should not say

    Many job candidates make the mistake of answering this question with talk of something personal. Some even launch into their life story, starting with their hometown and continuing on through their college graduation.

    Alternately, others share descriptions of the problems in their current job, explaining that they applied for this position because their boss is a micromanager or their employer won’t allow them to work a flexible schedule.

    And some job seekers simply summarize their resume, going point-by-point through their work experience and education history.

    All three of these responses can quickly send your new-job dreams down the tubes. If you answer with either of the first two, hiring managers see a red flag — an indication that you’re not that serious about the position or simply trying to escape a bad situation at your current job.

    And if you go with the third approach, you’re throwing away an opportunity. You can assume the interviewers read your resume before inviting you for the interview, and they don’t need you to walk them through it.


    Craft an elevator pitch

    The best way of knowing how to answer, “tell me about yourself,” is to make sure you succinctly and clearly explain how you’re suited for this particular job and — just as important — why you want it. So before you start crafting your selling points, spend some time reviewing the job description in the recruitment ad for the position and researching the company. That way you’ll have a good understanding of what the hiring manager is looking for as far as skills and experience.

    Next, prepare a short script that highlights your post relevant abilities, strengths and areas of expertise. Follow that with the reasons you’re applying for the job, focusing on career-related motivations such as the desire to build your experience and take on added responsibilities. Conclude with a brief statement explaining why working for this specific company appeals to you.

    A strong sample answer to “tell me about yourself”

    Here’s an example of an excellent response to “tell me about yourself” for a job seeker applying for a senior administrative assistant position with a clean-energy company:

    “I’ve been working as an administrative assistant for three years. At my current job in the finance department of a midsize company, I handle scheduling, meeting and travel planning for four executives and 20 staff members. I also help prepare correspondence, presentations and reports.

    “I’m known for being a detail-oriented, well-organized team player. I never miss deadlines, I’m a good communicator and I can juggle multiple tasks at once. In my performance reviews, my supervisor always notes that he appreciates my professionalism and enthusiasm for the job.

    “With this experience under my belt, I’m looking for an opportunity to take the next step in my career. I’m hoping to do so in an organization like yours that works to improve the environment, which is something I’m passionate about.”

    A final word on how to answer, 'tell me about yourself'

    Be concise. Don’t take up too much time with your response. You don’t have to tell the hiring manager every single thing that you think makes you a great candidate. Just give a few important details that will spark their interest in learning more about you, and you’ll get the interview off to a strong start.

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