For many, one of the toughest questions to answer is when asked “tell us about yourself,” or “who are you?” When someone asks them questions where they have to introduce themselves, they go blank. WHO AM I? hits so hard. That’s because many of them don’t know what makes an identity of a person. Introducing yourself is all about communicating your true identity to the receiving end of the communication. In this article, we will try to cover what makes up an identity and how to introduce yourself by incorporating those components of identity.
We all are unique in our own way. There are 7 billion humans on this planet with their own unique identities. The introduction covers the essential components that make you and only you that when you communicate about who you are, the audience (or the receiving end of communication) gets the exact picture of who you are as you are. A good introduction is just like good communication where the other side has rightly understood you and learned about you as you are. Remember that introduction is also an act of communication, thus the fundamentals of communication as we covered in the earlier article are to be taken care of even while introducing yourself. What do you want to communicate? (clarity in message), who are you communicating with? (knowing your audience), and how do you want to communicate? (aesthetic and impressive or intended style) are to be taken care of before everything else.
With that, let’s begin with what makes up our identity:
Identity in a broad concept. Generally speaking, it is qualities, beliefs, personality, looks and/or expressions, roots, and stories of life that make a person. I am my name, my gender, my community, my profession, my sexual orientation, my cultural background, my roots, my physical attributes, my personality, and many many more things that make me Me and nobody else. There is only one me in this world. I of course cannot tell everyone what makes me Me and bore the other side to death. That’s why the first rule of introduction is knowing who are you introducing yourself to and what amount of information is enough for the person. Like for example, if I am in a gay parade, maybe it’s important to introduce myself along with my sexual orientation whereas while in a job interview, I don’t have to unless it is required.
Also, the concept of identity changes from time to time, from region to region and culture to culture. Like for example, religion used to be part of our identity but it is not so anymore in the modern world. Or father’s name used to be part of our identity in a patriarchal society but it’s not so anymore. Thus, you don’t need to unless asked for. Likewise, what people in the Middle East consider as identity may not be so for people in the West and vice versa. What the professional world considers identity may not be so in the dating world and vice versa. So, like said above, the first rule of introduction is being aware of who we are introducing to, the situation and culture we are in, the purpose and motive, and what do we want to get from the communication.
Having said that, there are basically 6 things, universally, that make up an identity in the modern world.
Your name is the most important part of your introduction and often the first opening statement, though you can choose to reveal it in the end. Imagine, you met me and you said everything about you but forgot to tell your name! That will be a terrible introduction, right? So, the first thing that makes up your identity is your name, legal or nickname. The last name is optional.
“Hi, this is me Lakshya…..blah blah blah” or “Blah blah blah blah….and I am Mr. Lakshya”
The second thing that makes up our identity is how do we spend most of our time over and who we are in that activity. Students spend most of their time over studying something, working professionals spend most of their time over their job holding a certain position, business people spend most of their time doing business in a specific sector, and so on. At least 8 to 10 hours of our day, we spend over something and that defines us. So our profession or pursuit is part of our identity.
“Hi, this is me Lakshya, founder of KMAG, an aspiring entrepreneur ……blah blah blah” or if I am just a student “Hi, this is me Lakshya, an MBA student at King’s College ……blah blah blah” or if a freelancer, “Hi, this is me Lakshya, a freelance writer ….blah blah blah“
Your place of origin and residence
Being humans, our place of origin and of residence is an integral part of our identity. Anywhere you go, you always face the question “where are you from?” “where do you stay?” We, humans, are always interested to know where the fellow humans live or came from. So while introducing yourself, never miss telling about your place of origin and/or place of residence.
“Hi, this is me Lakshya, founder of KMAG, an aspiring entrepreneur, originally from Nepal, currently living in Sydney ……blah blah blah” or “Hi, this is me Lakshya, founder of KMAG, an aspiring entrepreneur, born and brought up in Kathmandu, living in Tinkune……blah blah blah”
When we were born, we were nothing but as we grew we started accomplishing one thing after another and those accomplishments define us. Academic success, business success, awards, honors, recognition, even relationship and children, they are all our accomplishments. We worked hard for it and got it. You can’t just buy it. You have to earn it and thus it defines you as a person, your ability and intelligence, your prospects, and many other things. Whatever you think is your biggest accomplishment, insert that in your introduction. It does not have to always be a “big thing” as an award. It could be as simple thing as “I am married with a kid.” Parenting or being in a relationship is no less of an accomplishment.
“Hi, this is me Lakshya, founder of KMAG, an aspiring entrepreneur, born and brought up in Kathmandu, living in Tinkune with my wife. I have twice been elected as President of Youth Council Nepal and recognized by Lion’s Club as an aspiring entrepreneur....blah blah.” If have nothing to say “Hi, this is me Lakshya, founder of KMAG, an aspiring entrepreneur, born and brought up in Kathmandu, living in Tinkune, married to an amazing woman.“
Your Values / Likes / Attitudes
Ask a man what he believes in and you can pretty much predict him. Apart from our objective reality, we all live in our own subjective reality according to what we think, how we see the world, our morals and principles; based on which, our actions are driven, our opinions are built, our plans are formulated, and so on. Likewise, our interests, our hobbies, our passion, our likes pretty much sum us up. We all have our own set of beliefs and values, likes and preferences, and that makes up our identity because our outer self is the reflection of that inner self. So when you are done showcasing your objective reality, bring your inner self in your introduction sharing what you believe in, your values, your principles, your hobbies, and interests, etc.
“Hi, this is me Lakshya, founder of KMAG, an aspiring entrepreneur, born and brought up in Kathmandu, living in Tinkune with my wife. I have twice been elected as President of Youth Council Nepal and recognized by Lion’s Club as an aspiring entrepreneur. I carry liberal values and see the world as one big family. I love traveling, reading books. I am a workaholic and good observant, always desperate to learn something ….blah blah blah”
Your future self
So far you have covered your past and present. Now bring your future self in your introduction. Things like what you are up to, what you plan to become, what is your destination, who do you see yourself 5 years from now, etc. All such who do you want to be or what you plan to accomplish or become pretty much defines the road you are heading towards, your motives and drives, and your spirit, and what defines you is your identity. Basically, introducing yourself means not only about telling who you are at the present but also what they can expect you to turn into in the future. With that, you will give a smooth end to your introduction as now the audience knows who you were, what you have become, what do you think and believe, and where are you heading towards.
“Hi, this is me Lakshya, founder of KMAG, an aspiring entrepreneur, born and brought up in Kathmandu, living in Tinkune with my wife. I have twice been elected as President of Youth Council Nepal and recognized by Lion’s Club as an aspiring entrepreneur. I carry liberal values and see the world as one big family. I love traveling, reading books. I am a workaholic and good observant, always desperate to learn something. I am here to make a difference, that in next 10 years, I plan to establish a youth media with a mission of creating an informed society not just for Nepal but for the world.“
That’s it for an elevator pitch. The introduction has to be short and sweet yet precise covering all the basic components. Too long will make you sound Me-Me-And-Only-Me. So limit it to 30 seconds. But ya, giving a touch of wit will do no harm.
Please note that there is no one rule that fits all. You have to tailor your introduction based on who you are talking to, what’s your purpose and motive, what impression do you intend to leave, and many other things that solely depend on the audience and circumstances you are in. What you position as your values and likes in a job interview may not be the same in dating and vice versa. In the end, as said above, an introduction is also a form of communication and you are to communicate effectively so that the other side interprets you as you want them to. The above-mentioned blocks are basic blocks to be considered, but styles and orders are to be set according to your audience and your motive of introduction.
Hope this article helps you to overcome the struggle that you always had to go through when asked “tell me about yourself.”
Since you are here, check this as well:
What’s Special Today: November 10
Historically native to the Indian states of Bihar, eastern Uttar Pradesh and Jharkhand and the southern part of Nepal, Chhath is one of those festivals that transcends the caste system that exists in the society. According to the Hindu calendar, it is celebrated on the sixth day of the lunar month of Kartik. The Chhath Puja is a 4-day long ritual specially offered to the solar deity, Surya, to show thankfulness for good health, good life and to request the granting of some certain wishes.
Day 1: On the first day, the devotees after bathing clean their house and eat the food that is offered to the god to protect the mind from the vengeful tendency.
Day 2: On the second day, the devotees are not allowed to drink even a single drop of water but, in the evening, they eat kheer made up of jaggery, fruits.
Day 3: The evening of the third day which is also known as sandhya ‘arghya’ day where a bamboo basket is decorated with various puja materials, fruits, thekuwa, and laddus which are offered as an ‘argya’ to the Sun. Also, the Chhathi Maiya is worshipped.
Day 4: On the last day of Chhath puja again an arghya is offered to the Sun God but this time in the morning. The devotees go to the riverbank to offer arghya to the rising sun and break their fast and conclude their four-day long worship.
Happy Chhath to everyone! Don’t forget to enjoy some thekuwas!!
World Keratoconus Day:
Every year on November 10, World Keratoconus Day is celebrated to focus global attention on keratoconus and ectatic corneal disorders. The day was first celebrated by National Keratoconus Foundation.
Keratoconus is a disease that causes the cornea to become weak, leading to the thinning and stretching of the cornea, which may result in the loss of vision. Keratoconus is degeneration of the structure of the cornea. The shape of the cornea slowly changes from the normal round shape to a cone shape which affects the vision. The keratoconus mainly develops in teenagers and young adults and the disease keeps on growing, if not diagnosed in time.
The disease has no prevention and no treatment. With early diagnosis, the disease can be managed and further damage can be protected. In Nepal, the prevalence of Keratoconus is 1 in 2000 according to the recent journal. So, this world keratoconus day, make a commitment to visit an eye doctor once a year for the early diagnosis of keratoconus as well as other eye diseases.
Best and Worst Bank in Nepal as per our survey
We had conducted an online survey to find out how banking services in Nepal are being used and perceived by their users. This article is entirely based on those responses. Thank you Muktinath Bikash Bank for supporting us in conducting this survey.
Over the years, Banks have become an integral part of our daily life and economy. With the shift to digitalization and modernization of the economy, banks have definitely made life easier for people to manage their cash and transactions. With these shifts and increasing dependency on banks more than ever, the use of banking services and users’ banking experience is one of the topics with the minimal amount of research done. Out of curiosity, we conducted an online survey to find out how people have been feeling about the banking services provided by the respective banks.
Respondents were mostly urban educated youth with access to the internet, in the age bracket of 18-40, mostly being from 22-26 age group. The data was collected through social media users, primarily from page followers of KMAG. In total, we got 219 responses out of which 160 were males and 59 were females.
In the list of questionnaires, one of the questions was “which is your favorite bank from Nepal as per your own experience,” and another being “which bank do you think is the worst.” Among 219, 27 respondents were undecided and 192 casted their votes for “best” and the “worst.” To build the conclusion on more strong foundation, we wanted to make sure respondents voice their opinion per their experience for which we had also asked them to reveal their primary bank.
Out of the total participants, a majority of 89.6% have multiple bank accounts though 19.5% of them just use one of those accounts. The remaining 10.4% claimed to have an only bank account. Out of all those banks, Nabil Bank is the primary bank for 36 participants (which was the highest no. of primary account holders in a particular bank). After Nabil, most of them were primary users of NIC Asia, Global IME, and Siddhartha Bank.
Nabil is voted as “Favorite Bank”
Nabil Bank seems to be the most favorite and popular among the respondents. With a total of 45 votes, it was voted the “most liked” bank. Among them, 29 were the primary account holders of the bank. Under “least liked,” it only got 4 votes.
To briefly talk about Nabil Bank, Nabil Bank is an ‘A’ class commercial bank which was founded in 1984 A.D. (2041 B.S.). It was established as Nepal’s first private sector bank incepted by multinational investors with the objective of providing modern, international-standard financial services. It was first established as Nepal Arab Bank Limited. In 1995, Dubai-government owned the majority of shares was bought by Binod Chaudhary.
NIC Asia is “least favourite”
With 76 votes for “worst bank,” NIC Asia seems like the “least liked” bank from Nepal as per the responses. Interestingly though, it has also been voted as “favorite bank” by 17 respondents.
After NIC Asia, Nepal Investment Bank seems like the second “least favorite” bank from Nepal with 23 votes against the bank.
On being asked the reason for disliking the bank, most of the participants seem to agree on the same point and that is “terrible” customer service of the bank. Similarly, other reasons were bad internet/mobile banking facilities, fraud-like business practices, and lack of important banking services/products being provided by the. Not to forget few were unhappy about the lack of branch/ATM services.
The detailed data are presented in the table below:
|Global IME Bank||25||17||10|
|NIC Asia Bank||29||17||76|
|Standard Chartered Bank||9||8||2|
|Bank of Kathmandu||5||6||1|
|Muktinath Bikash Bank||4||4||2|
|Century Commercial Bank||3||3||0|
|Kamana Sewa Bikas Bank||1||3||1|
|Prabhu Bank Limited||8||3||8|
|Rastriya Banijya Bank||3||3||9|
|Agriculture Development Bank||2||2||2|
|Nepal Bangladesh Bank||2||2||2|
|Nepal Investment Bank||15||2||23|
|Garima Bikash Bank||2||1||0|
|Nepal SBI Bank||2||1||11|
|Prime Commercial Bank||7||1||2|
|Manakamana Development Bank||0||0||1|
|Shangri-la Development Bank||1||0||0|
How to design a survey questionnaire
This article was originally designed for KMAG Online Writing Workshop and made available to public for knowledge-sharing purpose.
A survey is a list of questions aimed at extracting specific data from a particular group of people so that the surveyor can gain knowledge and insights into various topics of interest and then mostly generalize the result. How to design a survey questionnaire completely depends upon the purpose behind the survey. Depending on the purpose, questions are framed.
Let’s understand this way, surveyor seeks to know anything based on either of the following grounds:
- They don’t know anything, they are curious to find out, and they seek for answers. Example: I don’t know many people smoke and I want to find out by asking everyone out there.
- They think they know but they are not sure and they want to find out if what they think they know is actually true or false. Example: I think 50% of Nepalese do smoke but I am not sure yet and I want to validate my assumption by surveying.
- They strongly believe that what they know is the facts and now they want to interpret the world based on the “facts” they live by. Example: I strongly believe that smoking is bad and raising tax and making it expensive is the way to discourage people to smoke. I want to survey to find out how many Nepalese believe the same and agree with raising taxes and making it expensive would discouarge people to smoke.
Whatever grounds you are holding, you must frame your questionnaire according to that. So before working on the questionnaire ask yourself if you are trying to know the unknown or are you trying to validate or crosscheck what you think you know or you are trying to pass judgment or views based on your preset theory/hypothesis that your understanding is based upon.
This is how it goes:
You already have a theory and you want to analyze people based on the theory.
Let’s take for example “Job satisfaction Survey.” In this case, as per your theory/hypothesis, to be called “satisfied” one must be displaying so and so traits and views; if not, the person is not satisfied in his/her job. Based on that, you will be designing a questionnaire and see how many people meet the criteria to pass your judgment. If your theory says, highly satisfied people have flexible working hours, one of your questions will be something like “Can you come to your office at whatever time you want and can leave per your own wish as long as you are doing what you are paid for? Yes/No/Depends.” Likewise, there will be other questions set in a fashion to funnel your judgment regarding what percentage of people are satisfied with their job and work.
You have a theory or hypothesis that you want to validate or crosscheck
In this case, you have an assumption but you are not sure of and you want to crosscheck or validate by testing it on people. For example let’s say you think “Most arranged marriage people are unhappy,” and you want to validate your claim or crosscheck the truth in it by surveying among arranged marriage couples. Your questions will be something like “If you have to rate your marriage in terms of joy and happiness in it, how much will you rate on a 1 to 10 scale?” followed by questions like “if you have a time machine, would you go back right before the marriage and take your time to find out someone to have a love marriage? Yes/No/Maybe”
You don’t have any theory or hypothesis and you are only to find out unseen/unknown reality
In this case, you don’t have any preconceived thoughts or assumptions and you are plainly trying to learn or find out in an open-minded fashion. Like for example, You don’t know how many educated youth from Nepal actually do smoke, nor you know why they smoke despite its negative effect and you are set out to find out the answer by surveying. In such surveys, your questions will be like “do you smoke? Yes/No. “If you smoke, how many cigarettes do you smoke per day?” “despite its negative effect, why do you still smoke?”etc.
Sometimes, you can have a mixed approach, wherein the topic of your interest that you are surveying on, part of it is something you strongly believe being fact, part of it is something you are unsure about, and part of it is something you don’t know a thing about and you are willing to learn. Like for example, you strongly believe happy couples display so and so traits, and you think couples from love marriages are happier but you are not sure of, and you don’t know at all if personal happiness is valued more in marriage or responsibilities and social factors in the context of Nepal. So part of your questionnaires will be driven by your theory that you consider as being fact, part of it will be intended to cross-verify your assumption, and part of it will be purely seeking truth as it is without any deliberate attempt to frame your assumption.
Bottom line, you should know your ground, the purpose of surveying, what you intend to do afterward, based on which you should be working on your questionnaires. Your questionnaires will be designed according to your intention, so there is no hard and fast rule but make sure, in the end, you gather all the relevant information so put together to build a conclusion and for that, you need to think about what all needs to be asked to fill up the blocks and connect the dots.