Wednesday, March 12, 2014

My Top Ten Tips for Job Fairs

1. Dress Professionally. You never know who you will meet and first impressions really count. I saw a girl in a black pair of skin tight disco pants at a job fair. Maybe there was a booth for a nightclub or strippers...

2. Bring your amazing resume. Make sure you have worked on your resume enough where you feel it best represents you and your skill set.

3. Get there early and study the map of the booths. It is best to get to the event location early not just to get a great parking space but the people at the booths will be at their best and the lines will not be as long. Also mark on the map the booths of the companies you do not want to forget to visit.

4. Don't expect to be hired on the spot. Maybe this happens. I wished many times this would happen to me when I went to the many job fairs I attended.

5. Use job fairs as an opportunity to network and meet new people. At a recent job fair, I found out about several companies I never knew existed in my area.

6. Chances are the person standing at the booth may not have anything to do with the actual hiring process. I actually heard a booth person say they really didn't know anything about the hiring procedures for the  company. They were just there to cover the booth. Not kidding.

7. Speak up. Talk to the company representative. Open up the conversation by asking "Tell me about your company" or "What does your company do?" This lead to a very informative discussion that allowed me to ask about the positions within that company that would suit my skills and degree.

8. Ask about the complete application process. To be honest, I hate filing out applications. But after I spoke with the booth person, I felt a lot less stress about the process. Do you need to make a profile? Can you just complete one application and then submit for just the positions that come available. Or do you have to submit a new application each time for each new position?

9. Don't give up. It is so easy to become jaded after going to job fair after job fair and not get the job you want. But you never know what the next opportunity may hold. Just when you want to give up, that's when your breakthrough will happen. Just go. What do you have to lose?

10. Enjoy the wonderful free job fair swag. I LOVE the free office supplies.  I stock up on pens, pencils, rulers, post it notes, water bottles, hand sanitizers tote bags, stress balls , plastic cups, mini flashlights etc. I go from table to table, and  pick up the lovely goodies. A job fair is after all an opportunity for companies to market themselves to the public. Sadly some companies attending job fairs aren't even hiring, they just want to know if you would be interested in them if their were hiring.

These are of course just my personal opinions and experiences. Please feel free to comment below about your experiences good, bad and ugly at job fairs.

Thanks for reading.

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