Helpful Tips for Recruitment in the Fall Quarter
By Golbahar Kazemian, a second-year Career Advisor | october, 2012
The first quarter of business school can be overwhelming, especially for those recruiting for investment banking, consulting, or sales and trading. For these groups especially, recruiting starts almost immediately after resumes go live in early November. Only having been in business school for a short time, you will have to wear suits and rush around from one corporate conversation to another. You will have to juggle your academic load with the numerous coffee chats, informational interviews, and occasional trips to visit potential employers. In this mayhem, there are a few tips that were passed down to me from a mentor last year that I would like to share with all of you.
Practice your 90 second pitch in front of a mirror and around your apartment when you are alone. Run it by at least three or four people before you walk into any corporate conversation or talk to any recruiter. Practicing first will make you sound more polished and be more confident. Utilize the same strategy for coffee chats, informational interviews, and your real interviews. Try and anticipate what questions you'll be asked and come up with answers before-hand. This may feel unnatural, but utilizing this strategy can help reduce the probability of contradicting yourself while talking to a recruiter. Practicing your answers will also make the story behind your candidacy more cohesive. There will always be room for you to make small talk too, so don't worry about pre-rehearsed answers making you sound like a monotonic robot.
Have a nice back-up plan. Whatever works for you – either a less desirable employer, or a previous employer who has agreed to give you an internship if you want one. Knowing that you have something to fall back on will make you more confident. If you can't have a back-up plan for whatever reason, take comfort in the fact that Career Services is here to help you. Make an appointment with a Career Advisor or a Career Coach to discuss your recruitment strategy.
Leave your ego at the door. There will be times when you feel that you are ahead of the game, and times when you feel that you are falling behind the competition. It is crucial that you don't lose your head in either situation. Luck and affability plays a huge role in recruitment, and even though you might be a more skilled candidate or understand your industry better than the competition, there might be an edge your competition has over you that you haven't factored in. So don't get too comfortable. In the same way, don't get discouraged if you feel that you are falling behind. Most people feel this way at some point during the process. Make plans to meet with a mentor or a Career Advisor and describe how you feel about your situation; try and work out where you have to focus your efforts in order to be successful.
Good luck and I hope you find these tips helpful!