Monday, November 2, 2009

Job Fair Preparation Tips, Part 1

You NEED to prepare for a job fair! Don't just show up. Here's a starter list:

1. Find out which companies or organizations will be at the fair BEFORE you go. Make a list of which ones you want to visit. Preview their websites (mission statement, team members, possible job openings and descriptions, new advances or projects, etc.) so that you can hold an intelligent conversation if necessary. Prepare questions in advance.

2. Read my advice on how to improve your resume.

3. Print copies of your resume on fine resume paper (24# is good). Bring extras just in case. Also, bring a jump drive/flash that has your resume saved in a PDF an Microsoft Word document because some employers may have you upload it onto a laptop. If you're using the newest version of Word then make sure you also save a copy in the older (97-2003) version*. You never know which version of Word the employer will have and you want the format of your resume to remain intact.

4. Prepare for an on-the-spot interview. Check out my list of common interview questions.

*Don't know how to save your Word file in a different file format (i.e. PDF, or 97-2003 version of Word)? In the newest version of Word go to the very top left portion of your screen and click on the Microsoft button (colorful). Click, "Save as" and then chose the file format type from the drop down menu. In the 97-2003 version you can just select "File" from the top of the screen and then click "Save as" and select your file format, similarly.

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