How to Get the Most Out of Career Fairs
National career fairs are one of the best ways to jump start your MBA experience and discover the next step in your career goals.
Fairs offer you the opportunity to practice, polish and parlay your elevator pitch while networking with top companies, recruiters and fellow b-school students from across the country and internationally. If you’re not sure which industry or functional area you are interested in, career fairs are a great forum to ask in-depth questions and gather ideas to help focus your MBA journey.
I highly encourage all MBA students to attend at least one national job fair. You can give yourself an edge as you move forward in your career development.
As you prepare to attend a fair, here are a few tips and tricks:
- Find out if you need to be a member of the sponsoring organization.
- Determine which conference has the most companies of interest.
- Register for the fair.
Refine your elevator pitch
- Be able to quickly introduce yourself. Have your graduation year, area of focus and career goals at the ready.
- Clearly articulate why you’re interested in their company.
- Highlight your accomplishments and how you can add value.
Begin the conversation
- When possible, fill out applications for registered companies, being mindful of company deadlines.
- Secure interviews ahead of time to meet with companies at the fair.
At the Fair
- Make sure to chat with the companies you’ve targeted.
- If you didn’t already, secure interview times to meet with companies at the fair.
- If invited to a company networking social, be sure to attend.
After the Fair
- If you promised to follow up with an interviewer, be sure to get in touch as soon as possible.
- Send thank you notes to stay on their minds, with your contact details clearly visible.