Job Fair Do’s and Don’ts
Making the most out of a job fair is based on how you prepare, what you do during the fair, and how you follow up with connections afterward. To get the most out of local job fairs, be sure to do the following.
Make a Plan for the Day
Research the companies that will be there and think about the employers you want to visit before you arrive. If one catches you eye, do a bit of background reading to familiarize yourself with the company—you will impress them with your knowledge and initiative. Of course, bring a few copies of your resume or business cards along with you.
Ask Poignant Questions
Don’t ask questions that you can answer yourself with a bit of research. A good question to ask is one pointed at what types of employees they are looking for, or what types of people excel at their company, such as, “What is a key characteristic you look for in an employee for in your company?”
Dress for Success
Wearing proper attire can make a great deal of difference. When you attend a job fair, dress as you would when attending an interview.
Network. Always Network.
Yes, you’re looking for a new career, but you can always take the opportunity to network at a job fair. Collect business cards and make a good first impression with the professionals you meet.
Be Prepared to Answer Questions About Yourself
Provide the essentials, such as your name, a statement about yourself, and why you are interested in joining the company. Prepare information about your work history and education. If you are not working at the moment and they ask, say, “My most recent employment was with…” and move on.
Be Positive and Enthusiastic
Engage in communication with your new potential employer by maintaining good eye contact, giving a good handshake, keeping good conversation, and smiling like you mean it. Focus on your talents, not your fault or troubles. A recruiter may seem sympathetic, but they are more likely to hire someone they are impressed with, not that they feel sorry for.
Even if a recruiter takes a resume from you, apply for the position online. If you do some research online before attending the fair, apply online before attending. That way, when you meet with an employer at a job fair, you can let them know that you have already applied online, which will impress them.
Make an Impression
Treat a conversation with a potential employer as if you were talking to a friend. Stay confident and casual, but maintain a professional demeanor.