|Network Like a Pro, Make Lasting Impressions
By Darla Mayse, Sourcing and Recruitment Marketing Specialist
Career fairs, conferences and networking events, whether online or in person, can be a challenge for unprepared jobseekers. However if you prepare ahead of time, understand what potential employers are seeking and set goals for yourself, you can make a lasting impression on the big day.
Clarify your goals.
What is it that you hope to get out of the experience? Is it to learn more about the company or industry, a specific job that you saw online or simply to network? Once you understand what you hope to achieve by engaging in the company's social media sites or in-person information session, you will increase your chances for success.
Ask the right questions.
Preparing questions ahead of time will help you ask good questions and engage in meaningful conversations. So, instead of asking what jobs are available, ask about specific jobs that you researched on the company website; then share how your experience may be relevant. This is also a good time to ask about the hiring process. Most people never ask about the hiring process but doing so can give you an idea of how to prepare for upcoming interviews as well as understand the timeframe for hiring. Get familiar with all of the facets that interest you about the company: its goals, mission, and what it's truly like to work there or within a particular department.
While using social media to get status updates about positions to which you have submitted your resume is a great way to connect with recruiters and keep your name top of mind, it should not be your only form of engagement with a company. Why not go a step further and offer industry knowledge, articles and advice to others in the group. If you attend networking events, engage company representatives in informal chat relevant to the day's activities and events, as well as fun things going on within that particular company or industry.
Make a connection.
Once you meet someone in person and get his or her business card, be sure to stay connected via social media as well. Look for their LinkedIn and Twitter profiles, connect with them and continue your conversations. Connecting with contacts via social media can keep you top of mind.
Networking is a great way to engage a potential employer, whether you do so online or face to face. But if you want to make a lasting impression, you'll need to make the most of it by being prepared.