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How to Introduce Yourself Quickly
by Gilda Bonanno

Sometimes you have to introduce yourself in 60 seconds or less. 

This type of introduction is not your "elevator speech" – it's a brief

introduction only long enough to outline the basics.


For example, at some networking events, everyone sits around a large

table and then each person stands and gives a 30-second introduction,

including name and business.


Or sometimes, when a group of several people is giving a presentation

to company executives who might not know them, they start with each

person coming forward and doing a quick introduction, including name,

department, function and location.


Despite how easy a quick introduction may be, people often stumble

over it by forgetting to include something, not making eye contact with

the audience, mumbling, speaking too softly or fidgeting while speaking.


Here are guidelines to remember when doing a quick introduction:


Prepare.  What will you say? Yes, you could talk about yourself

for many minutes, but you only have a few seconds, so you have to

be selective about what you present.  Consider what you really what

to communicate and what will have the most meaning for that particular


Practice.  Say your introduction out loud, preferably on camera or

audio or in front of a mirror or a trusted friend. Repeat it until you can

say it clearly and smoothly. 


You don't have to memorize it, but it will help you to have key phrases

that you can easily remember and say.  Because otherwise you may

end up saying something such as, "I'm, uh, Mary Johnson… I guess I

work for the IT department… and that's it.  Oh, and I work at the headquarters office in, uh, Lincoln." And then you've wasted an opportunity to make a good impression. 

Voice. Speak loudly, slowly and clearly enough to be heard and

understood.  Enunciate and speak with energy; while you're familiar with

your name and identifying details, it may be the first time the audience

has heard them. 

Make eye contact. In a few seconds, you can't look at everyone, so

pick a few people at random spots throughout the room. 

Stand up straight.  Stand still (no pacing or rocking) with shoulders

back, head up and your weight evenly distributed on both feet. 

Smile.  Smiling will help you look more relaxed and also communicate

warmth and sincerity.

Communicate self-confidence.  All of these elements together help

you demonstrate self-confidence.  If you don't sound confident about the

basics of who you are and what you do, then how can you (or the audience)

be confident about anything else you might say?


Here are some examples of quick introductions:

  • Within a company: "Good morning.  I'm Denise Wallace, the Customer

Service Supervisor at the Dallas Call Center." 

  • Within a company: "Hello, I'm Glen Boyd.  I'm a sales representative

covering Western Canada.  I sell durable medical equipment like canes

and wheelchairs."

  • Outside the company: "Good afternoon.  I'm Andrew Milne.  I own

and operate Print Plus, a full-service print and copy store in White Plains."

  • Outside the company: "Hi, I'm Lisa Caldwell.  I'm a tax consultant in Brooklyn specializing in small businesses.

Following these guidelines will help you introduce yourself quickly with confidence and clarity so you can have a good start to your presentation and networking. 

Check out the video version of How to Introduce Yourself Quickly at this link: (over 1 million views!)

Gilda Bonanno is a speaker, trainer and coach who helps people from all walks of life improve their communication and presentation skills.

Copyright (c) 2011

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