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I am attending a "business" event. There will be vendors, different business associates at all levels, as well as contractors at this event. My title is Sr. MySQL DBA. However, I do not want to be categorized as just a DBA.

What are different ways I could introduce myself without pigeonholing myself?

Also, how could I work in my certificates and interests in other areas?

  • Certified PO
  • Interested in Leading System/Business Analyst
  • etc

Lastly, what are the advantages vs disadvantages to tailoring my introduction?

  • A person who is in general same field and level
  • A person who is not technical at all
  • A person who is high level manager/executive
  • A group with a mix of the above people.

Any websites that illustrate better vs worse "elevator" pitches, since I am pitching/selling/interviewing?

  • what do you want to achieve at the end? are you a seller at the event of buyer? – aaaaaa May 7 at 23:26
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In my experience, I talk more about what I do, not job titles.

Me: Hi, my name is ComputerCarGuy. {Pleasantries}
Me: Well, I currently work as a web app dev, but I also do desktop apps, Android apps, and embedded software.

At first glance it seems like job titles, but they aren't specific like a job title. I say "web app dev", not "Senior C#.Net Application Engineer". The first describes duties, the second is an actual job title.

In your case, you might say that you work as a DBA, but you also have interests in underwater basket weaving, developing your own alien languages, and lunar sky diving, for example.

I guess, really, the most important thing is to not stop at what you currently do, but to continue on with what you also want to do or what else you can do.

If you limit how you describe yourself, then other people will automatically limit you simply by lacking knowledge of what you can do. They will forget things, too, so you'll be even more limited.

I'm part of a makerspace, which is like a playground of workshops for adults. When people ask me what I do there, I tend to give an arms length list of things I can do, so when they ask "who knows how to do X/Y/Z?", they remember that I know a lot of stuff. Even if they can't remember if I've done it, they think maybe it's one of my skills, so they ask me anyway.

Getting people to ask you about something that they think maybe you know something about is 90% of the battle. The other 10% is the people who already know you know about that something.

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If people you talk to categorise you as a DBA (or any specific role), you are entirely to blame: you are responsible for your personal branding.

Who you are is what you do, not your job title. And it's up to you about how to describe the most interesting aspects of what you do.

If you want to position yourself for a specific profile, introduce yourself by promoting those tasks or qualities which are more relevant for how you want to be perceived.

"Hi, I am Bob [...] I do database administration and IT support, and more recently I started specialising in (e.g.) cybersecurity."

Independently from the expertise and level of the other person, don't oversell skills you are not confident about, but DO oversell your motivation and willingness to learn.

Practice describing yourself in 100, 70 and 30 words, and take it from there.

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