How to Introduce Yourself Professionally (with Samples)

H

how to introduce yourself professionally

Introducing yourself in any context can be nerve ranking. And that’s especially true when you’re introducing yourself professionally.

You want to make a good first impression and begin to build good personal and professional relationships. But you’re nervous as a professional introduction feels like a big deal. So you freeze. You avoid introducing yourself. Or you play it safe and don’t introduce yourself in an engaging way…at least if you’re anything like me.

The purpose of this article is to teach you how to introduce yourself professionally. The best practices share here are based on my learnings from over 10 years of experience working in a professional environment.

Throughout the article will cover the different types of professional introductions, from job interviews, meetings introductions, emails, phone calls, and others.

Let’s get started.

Contents

Key Principles for Introducing Yourself Professionally

When introducing yourself professionally, or really in any context, there are a few key principles that apply across the board.

These are three simple rules to keep in mind when introducing yourself professionally, regardless of whether it’s an interview, group meeting, 1:1, or even an email:

1. Context is Key

Being mindful of the social context is absolutely critical when you’re introducing yourself.

As an example, take a look at how the same introduction feels in different social contexts:

Introducing Yourself to Another Parent at Your Kid’s School

“Hi, I’m Phil, and I have over ten years of experience in marketing, over five years of experience as a people manager, and helped grow marketing sourced revenue by 200% for my company in the previous fiscal year.”

Introducing Yourself During a Job Interview for a Marketing Director Position

“Hi, I’m Phil, and I have over ten years of experience in marketing, over five years of experience as a people manager, and helped grow marketing sourced revenue by 200% for my company in the previous fiscal year.”

In the first example, the introduction may come across as sort of an odd flex. It feels as if you’re pushing your professional accolades as a way to show your status or importance in some way when delivered in a casual meeting at a school.

In the second case, it feels totally appropriate. You’re providing relevant context to establish credibility for the role that you’re interviewing for.

I share that example to show the importance of social context. What may be totally appropriate in one situation may not be in another.

So, always be mindful of social context and what information is appropriate to share about yourself in what environment.

2. Plant The Seed for Future Conversation

Conversation flows most easily when you find that you have something common with another person. Or if you discover an interesting fact about them that you want to know more about. That’s true in both casual and professional contexts.

So when you introduce yourself professionally, it helps to provide a context-appropriate fact or detail about yourself to plant the seed for future conversation, either during the introduction or when you re-connect with that person for a future interaction.

Here are some things that would be appropriate to mention about yourself as a part of an introduction:

  • Details about your family
  • Hobbies that you enjoy
  • Interesting facts about yourself (i.e., I was once a contestant on the Price is Right, I’ve travelled to 20 countries, etc.)

3. Don’t Talk for Too Long

I once interviewed somebody for a job that took the entire half hour answering the question “tell me about yourself.” I don’t remember a single thing he said, I just remember how long the interview dragged on.

When introducing yourself in any context, you want to provide the right amount of information so they know what they need to about you for the given context. But not so much that you bore them, come across as self obsessed, or seem like you’re not interested in the other person.

How to Introduce Yourself in Different Professional Contexts

Now that we’ve covered some of the key principles for how to introduce yourself professionally, we’ll dive into the specifics of how to introduce yourself in different professional contexts.

How to Introduce Yourself During a Job Interview

In general, for a job interview, whether it be virtual or in-person, you’ll start the interview and have the chance to say hello to the person or the panel that you’ll be meeting. When you’re first getting the chance to say hello, all you’re going to want to do is to say that it’s nice to meet you, shake their hand, and thank them for their time.

From there, the first question that you receive will commonly be to “tell me about yourself.” Or, if it’s a panel interview, there may be a round of introductions and then you’ll get the chance to introduce yourself.

I’m going to focus on provide a quick overview of how to introduce yourself in response to the “tell me about yourself question.” This also applies to the opportunity for a longer-form introduction at the end of a round of intros.

The Goal of Introducing Yourself During a Job Interview

The goal of introducing yourself during a job interview is you want to provide people a quick high level overview of your background and why it makes you a good fit for the position. A simple way to think about it is that you’re quickly summarizing and adding appropriate details to the resume that got you in the door

How to Effectively Introduce Yourself During a Job Interview

With that goal in mind, you’ll want to apply the principles that were previously discussed. Being that it’s a job interview, you’re going to do a professional introduction that summarizes why you’re a good fit for the role. Again, context is key here, so make sure what you’re highlighting about your experience is relevant to the role.

As you’re introducing yourself, you’ll want to a call out a couple relevant facts, data points, or short stories that peak interest and plant the seed for future questions. Finally, keep it long enough to provide an overview about yourself, but not so long that you lose interest. I find that anywhere from 1 – 3 minutes is a good length for a self intro.

A Sample of An Effective Introduction During a Job Interview

In the example below, we’re going to pretend that the person (Jessica) is interviewing for an account management position:

“I’m Jessica and I’ve been working in account management for over five years now. I currently work at Acme Widgets and have exceeded my quota for each of the two years that I’ve been there. In fact, in the most recent year, a big contributor to that was being able to renew our biggest client, who we had flagged as having significant risk of churning to a competitor due to some quality issues they were upset about.

Prior to that, I worked at XYZ Corp, which was my first job out of the University of Illinois. That was a wonderful first position as I had a great mentor that taught me the keys to building personal relationships with clients. One of the lessons that he taught me that I still use to this day is gifting for big life events. On my calls with clients, I’m always listening for things like upcoming birthdays, new babies, new houses, and things like that, and will send personalized gifts around those events. It’s a small gesture, but I’ve found that people really appreciate it and it shows that I care about the client at a personal level.

Beyond my professional background, I really enjoy hiking, campaign, and all things outdoors.”

How to Introduce Yourself At a Meeting

how to introduce yourself during a meeting

A reality of professional life is that you’ll be spending a lot of time in meetings. And if you’re new to a company, you’ll be expected to introduce yourself in a variety of different types of meetings. This section will walk you through how to introduce yourself in two of the most common types of meetings: group meetings and 1:1 meetings.

How to Introduce Yourself in a Group Meeting (Virtual or In Person)

If you recently accepted a job offer to join a new company, and are in your first meeting with a new group of colleagues, there’s a good chance that you’ll have to introduce yourself to the group. 

In general, the person that’s leading the meeting will at the start of the meeting give you the floor and say something like, “we’ve got a new member of the team here, so [insert name], why don’t you go ahead and tell us a little bit about yourself.”

At that point, the floor is yours to introduce yourself at a meeting.

The Goal of Introducing Yourself in a Group Meeting

When you’re introducing yourself in a group meeting, you basically want to accomplish three things:

  • Introduce your role at the company
  • Give a very brief background to establish credibility
  • Share facts about yourself to plant the seed for future conversation
How to Effectively Introduce Yourself in a Group Meeting

The key to an effective introduction in a group meeting is brevity. While the group meeting is a good chance for you to say hello to people at scale, your introduction is not the purpose of the meeting. There is generally an agenda, there is a fixed purpose for a meeting, and a limited time for discussion. So use the opportunity to say hello, but keep it brief and to the point.

A Sample of An Effective Introduction in a Group Meeting

“Thanks for the opportunity to introduce myself, [insert meeting leader name]. I’m Steve and I’m a new customer success representative here. While I’m new to a customer success role, I’ve been working in the industry for about seven years now, so hopefully can apply that background to really helping our customers get up to speed with our product quickly.

As far as a little bit about myself, I live here in the area, have a five year old and a one year old with my lovely wife, Bev, and really enjoy homebrewing beer.”

How to Introduce Yourself in a 1:1 Meeting (Virtual or In Person)

Outside of group meetings, you’re also likely to have a variety of 1:1 meetings with new colleagues as you’re getting started at a new company. Within those meetings, the person that you’re meeting with will often open the meeting by asking you to tell them a little bit about yourself and your background.

The Goal of Introducing Yourself in a 1:1 Meeting

When introducing yourself in a 1:1 meeting, you’re looking to establish a little bit of credibility as to your skills for the role. Additionally, you want to build a bit of rapport with the person that you’re meeting with and hopefully find something in common that you chat about with them.

How to Effectively Introduce Yourself in a 1:1 Meeting

In a 1:1 meeting, the introduction can be a little less formal, and there’s more opportunity for some back and forth with the person that you’re meeting with. Additionally, as the new person, you generally will get the first chance to do the introduction. However, you also want to give the other person an opportunity to introduce themselves, as this your first chance to meet them as well.

Ideally, your introductions would turn into a bit of a conversation during the meeting.

A Sample of An Effective Introduction in a 1:1 Meeting

“I’m Jennifer and I’m a new account executive here. I’ve been working in tech sales for over ten years so, while I’m new to the industry specifically, I think I hopefully bring a pretty strong background when it comes to sales itself.

I’m based in the Chicago area. I grew up there and am a big fan of the major Chicago sports teams. In particular, I’m a big Bulls fan as I got to go see Michael Jordan play live quite a bit growing up.

How about you, can you tell me a bit about your role here, how long you’ve been with the company, and some of the things you like to do in your free time?”

How to Introduce Yourself In an Email

In professional life, much of your communication is going to be written. And, specifically, much of your written communication will be done via email. So email is a common way that you’re going to need to introduce yourself to people professionally. 

Introducing yourself via email is also quite different than introducing yourself in person. And your approach to an email introduction depends upon the context of the email. So it’s actually a bit layered and nuanced so I’ll walk you through how to approach a couple of different types of email introductions.

The Goal of Introducing Yourself In an Email

At the highest level, what you’re trying to do when introducing yourself via email is you want to give enough context to tell the person on the other side about who you are, why they’re corresponding with you, and when they’ll need to correspond with you moving forward. And you also want to come across as polite and professional within that communication.

Now, as I previously mentioned, there a couple of different types of introduction emails. The first type tends to be a bit more short and transactional. You’re emailing someone that you haven’t worked with before for a specific purpose. In that case, the high level goal that I outlined in the prior paragraph of basically just telling the person who you are and why they’re corresponding with you applies here.

However, there are other contexts where the purpose of the email is the introduction itself. In the case where the purpose is the intro email, and particularly when that intro email is to a large group, you also want to give a bit of context around yourself to plant the seed for future interactions.

How to Introduce Yourself Effectively In an Email

When it comes to effective email intros, there are a couple of key things to keep in mind here. First, is brevity. Effective business writing is a whole topic of its own that is beyond the scope of this article. However, one of the key principles is that you want to keep it brief. So apply that principle to your email intro, and provide the minimum amount of context for the other person to know why you’re communicating with them.

Additionally, as previously mentioned, the extent to which you share personal information to try and establish connections with others is going to be highly dependent on the context of the email. If it’s a transactional email, focus on brevity and save the personal information for a future 1: call.

However, if you’re sending out an email to introduce yourself to a broader team you still want to keep it brief, but you should share a bit more detail about yourself.

Ultimately, email is more of an impersonal medium and you have to use your judgment of the context on how you approach your intro.

A Sample of An Effective Introduction in a Short and Transactional Email

Hi {First Name},

I’m Bill and I’m the new engineering manager at Awesome Software Company.

I wanted to send this email to say hello and set up an intro call. I know that you’ve been working with Awesome Software Company to support our website development and I’ll be your point of contact on that work going forward. I’d love to use that call to catch up on the status of current projects and talk about your current roadmap.

Please let me know of some times that you’re available over the next week. I look forward to chatting with you and working together moving forward.

Warm regards,

Bill

A Sample of An Effective Introduction Email to a Group

Hi {Insert Team Name},

I’m Bill and I’m the new engineering manager here at Awesome Software Company.

I join you from my most recent stop as engineering manager at Really Cool Software Company and bring over ten years of experience leading engineering teams.

I’m really excited to be here and have really enjoyed everyone that I’ve had the pleasure of meeting so far. I look forward to the opportunity to meet more of you as I continue my onboard here.

As far as a little bit about me personally, I live in the Seattle area and I really enjoying fishing and playing tennis. My wife’s name is Anne and I have two lovely daughters that are 14 and 11. 

Thanks and, once again, looking forward to meeting you all!

Warm regards,

Bill

How to Introduce Yourself Professionally In Other Contexts

Interviews, meetings, and emails are going to be a few of the most common ways that you interview yourself professionally. But those aren’t the only professional introductions you’ll have to make.

In this section, I’ll walk through how to introduce yourself professionally in a few other work contexts, including how to introduce yourself during a presentation, around the office, and over the phone.

How to Introduce Yourself During a Presentation

how to introduce yourself during a presentation

When you’re presenting a group of people that mostly doesn’t know you and/or hasn’t worked with you before, you’ll want to do a brief professional introduction at the start of your presentation. Generally, you’ll want to dedicate one slide to your self introduction. And you’ll want that slide to be one of the first few slides of your presentation, either directly before or directly after your agenda slide.

The Goal of Introducing Yourself During a Presentation

At the highest level, there are two big goals for introducing yourself during a presentation. The first is to establish credibility on the topic that you’re going to speak about during your presentation. And the second is to build a relationship with your audience. 

How to Introduce Yourself Effectively During a Presentation

Even though introducing yourself at the start of a presentation may feel different different than other types of introductions, the general principles and best practices when it comes to introductions still apply. 

First, keep the context of your presentation in mind. So, I mentioned that one of the key goals of a presentation introduction is to establish credibility. You need to establish credibility around the topic of your talk, so the details that you share about yourself during the introduction need to be relevant to the context of that topic.

Second, you want to build a relationship with the audience. Introducing some sort of humor or fun into your introduction can be an effective way to make your audience comfortable and feel like they like you. If that’s not your style, even just sharing some personal information about yourself can make you feel more human and approachable.

Lastly, keep it brief. Your intro should be no more than one slide and you shouldn’t introduce yourself for more than a minute or so. Provide just enough context to establish credibility. 

A Sample of An Effective Presentation Introduction

“Before diving into this presentation about the latest search engine optimization best practices, I wanted to quickly introduce myself and share a little bit about my background.

My name is John Smith and I’ve been working in digital marketing in some capacity for over ten years now. I’ve worked at a couple of different search engine optimization agencies, and also actively buy, build, and flip a variety of my own sites, including two that I sold for over six figures. 

Speaking to me personally, I love to nerd out on some Star Wars and Dungeons and Dragons, and am also a trained chef.”

How to Introduce Yourself Around the Office

We are now operating in an increasingly remote work environment. With that being the case, in-person introductions around the office are not as common as they once were. However, office intros are still a thing for many of us, and it’s important to have the skills to effectively introduce yourself to new colleagues around the office.

The Goal of Introducing Yourself Around the Office

The goal of introducing yourself around the office is a pretty simple one, and that’s beginning to build relationships with your new colleagues.

How to Effectively Introduce Yourself Around the Office

The first key to effectively introducing yourself around the office is to take the initiative to be the one to introduce yourself. I’ve been guilty of not wanting to put myself out there and initiate an introduction to a colleague that I don’t know. But, ultimately, avoiding introducing myself is something that I come to regret. It becomes more awkward when the see the same person repeatedly around the office and neither one of you has ever taken the time to say hello. So go ahead, suck it up, and initiate the intro.

Beyond that, you can keep your intro pretty simple and just introduce yourself, introduce your role, and then ask the same of the other person. From there, the conversation often takes off organically.

A Sample of An Effective Introduction Around the Office

“Hi, I just wanted to say hello, and introduce myself. I’m Kristy and I just joined the company last week. I’m a new member of the product team and will be working on our Mondo Widget. 

What’s your name and what do you do for the company?”

How to Introduce Yourself on the Phone

Of all the different ways of introducing yourself via a professional conversation, an introduction over the phone is probably the most short and to the point. In many ways, a phone introduction will be similar to an email introduction, in that the nature of a phone call is often quick, transactional, and focused on a particular topic.

The Goal of Introducing Yourself Over the Phone

Similar to an email introduction, what you’re trying to do when introducing yourself over the phone is to give enough context to tell the person on the other side who you are and why they’re corresponding with you. You also want to come across as polite and professional, and could potentially use the phone call as an opportunity for a longer conversation depending upon the nature of the call and responsiveness of the person on the other end.

How to Effectively Introduce Yourself on the Phone

The keys to an effective introduction over the phone are context and brevity. Assuming that the nature of the call is fairly focused and transactional in nature, you’ll want to provide enough detail so the person on the other side knows who they’re talking to and why.

A Sample of An Effective Phone Introduction

“Hi, I’m Doug. I’m the new marketing manager at XYZ widgets. I got your contact intro from Mike Timlin, who is the VP of Marketing here and told me your company supports us for all of our conferences. I’ll be the new point of contact on our upcoming trade show and wanted to check in on the status of a few items. Do you have a moment?”

Conclusion

Introducing yourself professionally can be nerve-wracking. But, at the end of the day, it’s something that most all of us have to do and can be mastered with repetition and by following best practices.

In general, adapting the core principles of keeping context in mind, planting the seed for future conversation, and keeping it brief will serve you well across all types of professional introduction.

From there, be sure to adapt what you’re doing to the nature of the professional introduction and you’ll be in great shape to make a fantastic first impression.

About the author

Dan Slocum

Dan is the founder of Best Fit Work and is a business professional with over 10 years of experience. He has been a hiring and people manager on multiple occasions, and has also gone through the hiring process himself at a variety of different companies. Dan serves as a career counselor on the side. He writes to share content, tools, and resources to help people discover and thrive in their own best fit work.

Recent Posts