Standing out at a career fair is a quick way to start your next job hunt. Whether you are a senior in college or experienced in the workforce, standing out at a career fair can help you land your dream job. To take advantage of the career fair, you need to follow a few basic tips to stand out from the crowd.
1. Do the Legwork
Companies like to know that you are passionate about working for them. They look for candidates who are already familiar with their business or industry. Standing out at a career fair starts before you ever walk through the door. Look up the list of companies who will be at the event. Figure out which companies are the ones you want to approach so that you can prioritize them. Take the time to research these companies before the career fair. This will show that you are passionate about their company and are prepared for a potential job opportunity.
2. Dress for Success
To plan for success, you have to dress for your dream job. Your first impression is very important. Wear a conservative, simple outfit. Choose an outfit that is right for your target job. When you look professional, you will feel more confident and make a solid first impression.
3. Give Them Your Resume
As you introduce yourself, hand the recruiter your resume. This will help you draw their attention and take advantage of the opportunity when it first presents itself.
4. Prepare Your Elevator Pitch
Before you go to the career fair, focus on your elevator pitch. You only have a few moments to make a good impression, so make sure that you sell yourself. Include your name, career goals, area of focus, skills and how these factors tie into the company.
5. Be Thoughtful
Asking the right questions ensures you stand out at a career fair. Recruiters are tired of getting questions that applicants could easily look up on the company’s website. Instead, ask a question about the company’s culture or something similar to see if the company will be a good fit for you. One good question to ask is about initial training. This type of question shows your genuine interest in the company.
6. Connect With as Many Recruiters as Possible
Career fairs are an ideal place for networking with professionals in your field. It is a chance to connect with different recruiters, even if you decide not to work at the company. Connect with the recruiters afterward on LinkedIn. You should also make sure to ask for business cards so that you can follow up and stay in touch with the contacts you made.
7. Send a “Thank You” Note
After a job interview, you normally send a follow-up note. You should do the same thing for a career fair. Include a detail about something you talked about and restate your interest for the position. Your follow-up note will help you leave a good impression and remind the company that you are a potential candidate for the position.
These tips are a great way to jump start your job search and make some great contacts.