Be prepared for ‘Tell me about yourself’.

Typically emdash’s client onboarding process is:

  • Client makes enquiry

  • I send a presentation with info about emdash and a few samples (chosen to be most relevant to the client’s area of business)

  • Client evaluates whether we’re suitable and schedules a discovery call to explore the work

Last week, an acquaintance — who I knew from an earlier engagement — invited me to meet his boss, who needed some stuff written. So, we jumped directly to the third step without going through steps 1 and 2.

As luck would have it, the boss came to the meeting and said, “Can you please tell me a little bit about yourself and show me some samples?”

The moment he said that my heart sank a little. I hadn’t prepared a presentation, I hadn’t picked out samples either. I’d shown up to the call thinking he’s going to tell me what he wants.

The good thing is that I’ve been selling for a long time. So, I gathered myself up and spoke. My heavily-practiced “about emdash speech” rolled off my tongue. I used the portfolio section on my website to show samples. Even if it wasn’t customised, it was pretty relevant for the prospect because we’re rather niche. There is also a “project stories” section which could have helped explain our approach to work, though in this case, it wasn’t needed.

The point I’m making is that even during the times you think you wouldn’t have to speak about yourself, you might need to. So be prepared.

  • Practice your elevator pitch

  • Have samples handy, preferably online that anyone can access in parallel

  • Write a few case studies to explain how you do things (not just what)

Also, don’t be like me. Remember that if you’re meeting someone for the first time, they are most likely to ask you for an intro and samples. 🙂