Another article of mine from Monster.com, this time on the art of the elevator pitch. Whether you're looking for work or not, knowing what to say when opportunity knocks (or dings) is key to networking and career success.

Prepare Your Elevator Speech

By Margot Carmichael Lester, Monster Contributing Writer

"I was alone in the elevator with the hiring manager for a temp-to-perm job I really needed," recalls temp Ben Whittle. "I knew I should say something -- anything -- to make the case for picking me. But I was nervous. I didn't want to sound stupid, so I opted to say nothing. I missed a great opportunity and ended up not getting the job."

How many times have you been unable to find the right words in an impromptu situation like this? Selling yourself on command can be tough, particularly when you have to do it in a short time period. This is why you should develop an elevator speech, or a sound bite, that details your professional story before you need it. Follow these pointers to craft it.

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