Are you ready?  Do you know what employers and recruiters are looking for and want to see from you?

I have attended hundreds of college career fairs in my career and I have seen it all.  I know for candidates they can feel overwhelming, how many times in a job search do you get 100s of employers actively looking for qualified candidates in one room?  But they can also be exhausting, there is a lot of waiting in line, lots of bodies in one room, auditorium or gym and lots of talking happening.  LOTS!  

I have a few tips for those of you who are preparing for one of these events at your campus.

Tip #1: BE PREPARED

Do your homework, research ahead of time who is coming, what jobs they have  and a little bit about the company so that you go to that booth informed.  Nothing is more of a turnoff for me as a Recruiter if someone stood in line to chat with me and give me their resume and they don’t know one thing about what my firm does or whether or not we hire the type of candidate that they are.  Not impressive.

Tip #2: DRESS TO IMPRESS

I don’t care if you have class before and after the fair, this is a semi-interview and if you want to impress you need to show it.  I can’t tell you how many times students approach me with their skateboard in one hand and their resume in another or they have shorts and sandals on.  Again not impressive.  I say dress business casual, you don’t have to have a dress on or a suit but nice slacks, button-down shirt and make sure the clothes are clean and pressed.  Now that’s impressive!

Tip #3: HAVE QUESTIONS

There is always a question to ask, like “are you hiring”, “what is your company mission” or “how do you like working for the firm and how long have you been employed with them?”  Asking questions shows your genuine interest and helps you connect with the person you are speaking to.  Remember you want to leave a lasting impression, that is also impressive!

Tip #4: HAVE FUN!

Life is too short and people genuinely care for others, don’t sweat this one out, have fun, relax and let the real you show!  That’s impressive!!