Hey friend, so you finally find the time to search your college’s career website, and to your surprise, a career fair is on campus next week. You check your schedule to make sure you have plenty of time (a couple of hours) between classes and your obligated lounging around time. Excellent, now what? Remember that career fairs are about more than just dressing smart and having a handful of resumes to pass out. You need to make sure you play it smart so you can STAND ABOVE the rest. Here are three huge tips to give yourself the COMPETITIVE EDGE to land a job.
Your first hint is to practice your interviewing skills. Some career fairs will have professionals available to test you and help you out; but if you go in before hand not rehearsed it won’t do you much good. The best practice is in front of a camera (not a mirror or your stuffed animals). Cameras allow for playback so you can study and correct mistakes in your sentence structure, body language, etc. Spark Hire’s Profile Video is the perfect way to practice the all-important “elevator speech” that trips up a lot of job seekers. Spark Hire allows unlimited recordings of a 60-second video that provides employers a chance to witness your communication skills.
Your second step is RESEARCH the career fair. Find out who is going to be there, and more importantly, find out the names of the company’s representative and/or human resource director. This is important. Now you can individually address each cover letter to that specific person. (Make sure your cover letter is not just some generic layout. Put some thought into each one and tailor them to what each company is looking for). Doing this alone will put you one step above the thousands of other students who just thrust a piece of paper into these recruiters’ faces.
Finally, and I cannot stress this enough, do research on both the company AND the positions they have available. Be prepared to answer and ask questions concerning both. If you are able to provide well thought out questions and responses, you will stand out in their minds as a viable candidate who goes the extra mile.
Questions? Ideas? Follow me on twitter @ChrisComella or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org