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Mastering a Career Fair

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  • I am the president of Piton Inc a company that helps people make career transitions. Success in career transitions comes down to three things: 1. knowing what you want2. Getting what you want3. Having it be what you wanted.There are times in our lives when these three things come together: we’ve identified a goal, achieved that goal and it is as great as we had hoped. Perhaps you have felt that at some point during your time in the military. .Or meeting your spouse, choosing your school. But that feeling of know what you want and getting what you want is a tremendous feeling and a calming feeling as well. Like you are where you are supposed to be. That is what we work on for Career transitions. What is the GoalYour GoalTheir GoalStrategies for SuccessTactics for SuccessPractice for this evening and tomorrow.
  • SOP
  • Keep in mind that Employers want to…Source candidates earlyScreen candidates on the spotEngage employees at your levelBrand their organizationShowcase productsHighlight commitment to diversityQUESTION:How many of you, in a previous role, had to attend a career fair as an employer?What were some of your reasons for attending?What did your employer want to get out of the career fair?Even the companies that are not currently hiring, they know that the war on talent is looming. If they want a pipeline of talent, they need to know you.
  • CARDS: Success for me isUltimately, you want to get a great job that will be rewarding, secure and pay handsomely. Collect employers’ marketing materialsTalk to companiesLearn about their corporate culturesGet noticed –make an impressionPut your resume into the system or find out how, where and whenExpand your networkAcquire employer contacts and meet other studentsQUESTION:How many of you have been to a career fair as a participant beforeDoes anyone have a reason they went that may not be on the slide?
  • HR and culturemention Relevant for Career Switchers and EntrantsPerfect your pitch and refine resumeDo your research:What do you want to learn and from whom?Think of Hoovers, Career Beam), VaultPractice Stealth and hover techniqueThink of gathering intelligence13. Listen. listen. Listen to the representatives20. Listen and learn from the people around and in front of you. Listen before you speakCollect contacts (business cards) and materials for future useMaybe one contact is more relevant for a classmate so be sure to pass them along!
  • Relevant for Career Switchers and EntrantsPerfect your pitch and refine resumeDo your research:What do you want to learn and from whom?Think of Hoovers, Career Beam (training next week), VaultPractice Stealth and hover techniqueThink of a CIA Agent gathering intelligence13. Listen. listen. Listen to the representatives20. Listen and learn from the people around and in front of you. Listen before you speakCollect contacts (business cards) and materials for future useMaybe one contact is more relevant for a classmate so be sure to pass them along!
  • Do your homework: research NOWWhat do you know about companies already? What makes you value-added as an intern?
  • Do your homework: research NOWWhat do you know about companies already? What makes you value-added as an intern?
  • People who interview are somewhat intimidated.Center for enhanced performance.Professional athlete = professional job seeker
  • The booth:Check your notesWait patiently (pleasant face, standing straight but comfortable)Eye contact, smile, shakeIntroduce yourself.Ask a questionAsk for and give cardsPick up any information that might be useful.Say thank youStep away. Put card away note down information to follow up
  • Battle buddyIt is not Zero Sum
  • Don’t talk badly about the military or the VA.
  • STAFF: Mary AnnRole Play:“Recruiter” answers with “Don’t give me your resume, send it to our website”What’s your reaction?Know that some companies DO NOT take hard copy resumes at a career fair because of OFCCP regulations (office of federal contract compliance programs)Employment StandardsAdministration’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) is responsible for ensuring that contractors doing business with the Federal government do not discriminate and take affirmative action.Even if someone takes a hard copy and says to apply on the website….apply on the website!(information from the MBA Career Services Coucil)Volunteer #2“Recruiter” answers with “I don’t make hiring decisions, I’m just here because…”What’s your reaction?That doesn’t mean don’t network with them, but it does mean don’t ask them hiring questionsVolunteer #3 to practice a pitch [GIVEAWAY – StrengthsQuest]“Recruiter” answers with “We’re only hiring full-time”What’s your reaction?That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t network for that potential opportunity next year!
  • Good bye. Close on this slide.
  • Transcript

    • 1. Career Fair Strategy Anne H. Jones Piton Inc.Veterans Education and Career Summit
    • 2. What Does Success Look Like? The Beauty of a Cold Glass of Beer • Knowing what you want • Getting what you want • Having it be what you wanted
    • 3. Today‟s Class• Strategy = Understand the concepts• Standard Operating Procedure = Have an actionable plan• Rehearsal = Practice
    • 4. StrategyKnow the employer’s purpose. What’s in it for them?• Connect with candidates• Screen candidates on the spot• Brand their organization
    • 5. StrategyKnow your own purpose. What’s in it for you?• Understand the market• Plan and prepare for applications and interviews• Expand your network of employer contacts and other students
    • 6. Set Your GoalsMake “Understanding the Market” a goal.• What are functions and industries? • Function: what will you do • Industry: where will you do it• Where are the jobs you want located?• What is the current and future environment?
    • 7. Prepare for InterviewsPractice for the „At Bat‟Use the Career Fair to prepare for future interviews:• What skills are they are looking for?• What do they know about you?• How does your „pitch‟ work?
    • 8. Expand Your NetworkGet Noticed and Learn who is out there• “Who can help me?”• “Who can help someone I know?”• “Can I be a connector?”
    • 9. 4 stages of the Job Opening Posted online. Have Open to the job, looking universe for referrals Have a need, but no job description Companies on the lookout for talent Plan-Prepare-Execute: Military Skills for Your Civilian Career Search9
    • 10. Pre - GameGet the list of who is attending• Make A, B and C lists• A = Your dream job / dream company• B = A good fit.• C = Interesting but don‟t know much about this company
    • 11. Pre - GameGet on the website of every A & B list• Who do you already know there? LinkedIn• What makes you value added as an employee there?• What jobs do they have posted?
    • 12. Game Day• Get dressed • Clean, good fitting outfit. If you feel professional and comfortable, that is how you will look.• Visualize Success• Practice your pitch (out loud)• Consider what to bring • Folder to carry resumes, cards, pen and paper
    • 13. The Booth SOP• Go to the “B companies‟ first• Check your notes• Wait patiently (pleasant face, standing straight but comfortable)• Eye contact, smile, shake• Introduce yourself. Ask a question• Ask for and give cards• Say thank you• Step away. Put card away note down information to follow up
    • 14. The Pitch SOP in 5 Easy Pieces”• Introduction• Key skill, experience I need to know about you• A second skill, experience I need to know about you.• A third thing I need to know about you• Where you would like to take these skills and experiences Networking Success for Veterans
    • 15. The Pitch: Tell your story in 5 Easy Pieces Key skills, experiences I need to know about you Where you would likeIntroduction to take these skills and experiences Networking Success for Veterans
    • 16. Game On!• Go to the “B companies‟, then “A” and then C• Avoid waiting in line• Meet as many in the booth as possible• Check your notes before going to booth• Visit as many booths as possible• Go to the private receptions• Send follow-up emails
    • 17. Battle Buddy Strategy• This is Not a Zero Sum Game. • You want them to want you, but also to want to hire more veterans in general. Everyone wins.• Pick a Battle Buddy to check in with a few times • Practice with your pitch • Reconnaissance • Introductions • Moral Support
    • 18. Serious Etiquette for Networking• Be clear about what you‟re asking• Be over prepared• Be mindful of people‟s time• Smile and Say Thank You• Respect Reputations• Be aware of TMI (too much info)• Just One Drink and no smoking Networking Success for Veterans
    • 19. It‟s Not Personal…• You might hear… • “Don‟t give me your resume, send it to our website” • “I don‟t make hiring decisions, I‟m just here because….” • “We‟re only hiring for full-time”
    • 20. Let‟s Do It• Standing Tall• Shaking Hands• The Pitch• Taking the Lead
    • 21. Contact Information Anne H. Jones Cell: 347 782 1715 • Anne@pitoninc.org • www.pitoninc.orgFollow Us on Twitter, Linked In, Facebook Military Career Transition Planning for Uncertain Times