No matter where you are in the course of your career you get this question. Unless of course you are super well known then you might get a pass…might. I have a feeling if the President of theUnited Stateswas dressed down in a baseball cap and shades making small talk over coffee without secret service he too may get the very same question.
After years of living inWashington,DC, I have made it a point NEVER to use this as an opening question unless occupation became a part of the conversation. I refused to be the unoriginal young professional that could think of nothing else to open a conversation with “So, what do you do?”
Not to say my material was stellar, but I was not going to be a drone either. I always used something based on other environmental factors like “Uggh, the Metro sucked this morning. How was your commute?” Or, “So where are you from…originally?”
So, back to the point of this post, what do you do? How do you answer it in the number of seconds it takes to keep the sender of the message from looking over and/or around you for more interesting conversation? And, how do you do the same with describing your organization?
Here’s you chance…in 7 words express what you do without saying “I” or “me” or your organizations name. Just to make it interesting, answer the follow up question, “What does you organization do” in 7 words.
What do you do? Manage external communications for a distinguished non-profit.
What does you organization do? Create affordable housing solutions for low-income people.
Check out this blog post from Penelope Trunk founder of Brazen Careerist.
Disclosure: This posr was originally written and posted on YNPN Louisville