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Pitch perfect

Career conference features ‘Voice’-style competition

Chicago careers
Chicago Operations Programs Manager Don Good watches as Chicago Letter Carrier Delores Lyons-Hayes selects a postal executive to serve as her coach during the “elevator pitch” competition.

More than 300 Postal Service employees — from fresh-faced recruits to USPS veterans — received practical advice at a recent three-day career conference in Chicago.

The meeting was part of a broader effort to offer employees more professional development opportunities and improve the way the organization leverages their skills.

The weekend began with a Friday evening networking session, where Chicago District Manager Greg Johnson and other leaders urged attendees to take full advantage of the conference.

Saturday and Sunday workshops covered topics such as building an eCareer profile, acing job interviews, becoming better at time management and developing business communication skills.

Almost 100 employees took on the weekend’s main challenge: presenting an “elevator speech” — a few sentences about their background and qualifications aimed at landing that next job — to a panel of judges.

Like the popular singing competition show “The Voice,” judges sat with their backs to the presenters, pivoting around only for pitches they liked.

Chicago Letter Carrier Yvette Smith found the experience beneficial.

“I learned about specific career paths and opportunities with departments I’m interested in,” she said.


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