Finding employment doesn’t always have to be a struggle to do by yourself. Sometimes, if you do not subscribe to the right platforms, you’ll hardly hear a thing about certain job openings. Thankfully, companies extend their hand to aspiring applicants by meeting them halfway. They do this by attending job fairs where different industries can meet prospective employers at once.
Preparations Before Going to a Career Fair
While the primary purpose of going to a career fair is to land a job offer, there are other reasons people attend it. Job applicants may want to scope out their options to see company representatives in person. On the other hand, entrepreneurs may wish to attend these corporate events to build networks and potential partnerships.
Whatever your reason for attending a career fair, it’s vital to make the proper preparations to build meaningful connections. Otherwise, you could miss out on great opportunities to further your career.
Before heading to a career fair, here are three things you need to prepare:
1. Your Research and Itinerary
Like any other fair, career fairs follow a theme. This designates the kind of businesses that’ll be present for applicants to apply for. For example, live career fairs are typically held at hotels or conference centres to accommodate a high number of attendants. If they have too many companies to host, they might reserve slots and stalls for half-day reservations, making their availability vary depending on the time of day.
It pays to research which companies will be attending a career fair. This information will usually be included in an event page or poster, so you’ll have time to prep your resume to fit a specific company. Since these events can vary from a few days to a week-long, it’s best to plan your itinerary if you’re pressed for time. Doing so helps you optimise your schedule instead of wandering aimlessly at an event.
2. Bring Your Business Essentials
Making a good impression on company representatives is a great way to have a good word in your application. If they like how well-prepared and presentable you are, you’ll have a higher chance of getting a call. This is why you need to pack all your business essentials before leaving your home.
Remember to bring several copies of your resume; at least 10-15 will do. It’s also great to carry 2-3 times that amount in business cards. While you can be picky about applying to specific companies, you should be more liberal with exchanging business cards.
3. Prep Your Speech
While it’s vital to have your documents in order, remember that a career fair is still a social event. This means you’ll be more appealing as a business partner if you’re easier to talk to. Thankfully, confidence is just a matter of being comfortable with yourself.
Practice your elevator speech so you won’t stumble while introducing yourself. Remember to highlight your exceptional skills and define what your career goals are. It’s also helpful to prepare your answers for potential interview questions. The more well-prepared you are, the smoother your conversations will be.
If you don’t land a job offer on your first job fair, you shouldn’t take it too hard. After all, there’s always another opportunity waiting around the corner. For this reason, you must always keep your eyes on the lookout for the next viable career fair that matches your employment needs.
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