5 ways to get better responding to “tell me about yourself”

May 26, 2022

We’ve had some good questions recently from spikeview’s student community that relate to pitching yourself. Heading into summer, job interviews are top of mind for most of our students. 

[#1] SMILE

Smiling is a universal form of communication. Not only does a smile instantly convey a message in person, it’s also powerful over the phone. People can hear your smile while you talk. When a hiring manager is trying to get to know you, a smile will positively alter your tone


Keep your personal introduction simple and to the point. Choosing which areas to highlight is probably the hardest part about preparing for an interview. Harder still, getting to the point when you’re telling a personal story. Watch the video below for three helpful frameworks to help you stay clear and concise.


Fluff will get you nowhere. The interviewer wants to get to know you as a person. What subjects get you excited? What type of class projects were the most fun? What did you learn about yourself this year? Interviewers understand you don’t have tons of work experience. They’re trying to determine if you’re a good fit for their organization. 

Interview coach Cass Thompson explains how stories help you give specific examples.


Jeff Su describes the present-past-future storytelling structure as the key to influencing an interviewer. Each person’s details will be different, but the structure leads the interviewer to ask certain follow-up questions that play into your strengths. Watch his video below.


We’ve all heard first impressions are a big deal, but have you thought about how quickly it happens? There are some wild studies of hiring managers that show just how fast people form an impression. An interview might last an hour, but this study showed 33% of managers knew in 90 seconds if they’d hire the candidate. Eye contact, posture, wardrobe, and room presence are all part of your response to “tell me about yourself.”