CNN is doing a segment on their website, www. CNN.org called the 30-second pitch. It finds people who are out of work and puts them on film pitching themselves to perspective employers. The hostess is sunny and enthusiastically supportive of the courage the out of work individuals display. However, as I watched, I was struck by how much more effective these pitches would be if CNN had given each person a little coaching about the way they presented themselves.
I heard people dropping their energy and volume at the ends of sentences which made them sound like they were already totally defeated. I saw people whose grooming left a lot to be desired. People whose eye-contact wasn't connecting, even though they were talking to an impartial camera. But most of all... the pitches themselves, for the large part, sounded like pleading. A one note chorus of "hire me, please cause I'm out of work and I need a job"
When I coach interview skills, I like to have people express themselves more like... "Hire me because I can really help your bottom line" Let's face it, most people, employers especially, what to know "What's in it for Them" What do I get out of hiring you. I found many of the stories about the out of work 30-second pitchers on CNN.org compelling and I really hope this exposure helps them find work. I just wish that CNN would have maximized their effectiveness by giving them a few tips before putting them on camera.