Do you dread the thought of the long and arduous process of job applications? Have you just moved to town and are wondering how to begin making connections and contacts? A business fair or expo is a great place to start. In fact, Carolyn Moe, director of career services at Globe University-La Crosse, recommends it.
When working the Globe University table at the La Crosse Business Expo, organized by the La Crosse Area Chamber of Commerce, Carolyn took note of what she saw, and in some cases, didn’t see that could benefit those looking to network. Even if the event isn’t labeled as a “career” or “job” fair, an attendee can begin to make connections with future employers.
“Whether going to a business expo or career fair event, it’s important to be on your a-game,” Carolyn said.
Here are Carolyn’s top three tips to remember.
1. Dress professionally
If you come in jeans and a t-shirt, employers will get the impression that you are not serious about getting a job with their company. Dressing professionally shows you put thought and care into meeting them.
2. Say positive things
Never speak negatively about your past/current employers (even if you really disliked it there). It gives a bad impression and makes the employer wonder if you will speak poorly of their company someday.
3. Be courteous
Don’t go to tables for the sole purpose of getting free giveaways (candy, water bottles, etc.) Be sure to take a few minutes to meet the person behind the table. They may know someone that will hire you someday!
Not only could these tips lead you to future employment, they are provide good practice for working in a professional setting.
“There are a variety of benefits, including meeting possible employers, learning about local businesses and mingling with professionals in their fields,” Becky Myer, adjunct instructor, said.
Even if the employers don’t currently have openings, they will at some point, so make a good first impression.
“If one makes a good impression at a business expo, a potential employer may remember that, giving that person a good head start when it comes to hearing about and applying for jobs within that company,” Becky said.
Be prepared for the next expo by dressing, speaking and behaving professionally!