Wow! I just got back from the 2011 Business Career Expo, and it was an amazing experience. As an MBA student, I was able to attend the luncheon before the expo began. This was a great opportunity to talk to some employers in a smaller setting. It also allowed me to get into my “elevator pitch” mode. Even though not all employers had positions that I was interested in, I was able to learn about the companies and get a feel for the culture.
The expo itself was amazing. There were over 70 employers at this years expo. Companies ranged from banks, and accounting firms, to Pepsico, and NewAd. There was something for everyone. I was intimidated at first, however, as more and more people entered the room, I knew it was time to get my game on. If I were to stand out, I needed to go and talk to some employers.
So, now what? Apart from research before the expo, be sure to follow up with the employers you were interested in. I like to send personalized thank you cards in the mail. I think this is better than an email which can be deleted and forgotten. Also, try to find someone within the organization to conduct an information interview with. You can find these contacts through your personal network, or LinkedIn. I have found that most people are very open to talking to students. If you’re lucky, you may find someone that’s an alumni of your school. Alumni’s are a great resource, you have a common topic right off the bat, and they understand what you’re going through.
To sum up, here are some tips for a successful Career Expo/Networking Events:
- Research exhibitors/participants
- Be prepared to ask questions that will help you stand out
- FOLLOW UP!!
Happy Job Hunting!!