Prepare for the Event
When you register to participate in an Executive-in-Residence program, you will need to submit two pieces of information:
- Resume or brief bio statement.
- A question you would like the executive to answer. This helps our participating executives get a feel for who will be in the room and what they'd like to discuss.
On the day of the event, please arrive to check in at least ten minutes before your first small group coaching session.
- Please bring your Chicago Booth name tag with you. If you do not have one, a name tag will be provided.
- Event attire is business casual.
Prepare for the Conversation
The small group coaching conversation gives you the opportunity to receive career insight from a seasoned executive. That means you have the chance to focus the conversation on topics that are most important to you. The questions you ask will drive the conversation.
In order to better prepare for the conversation, we recommend that participants do the following:
- Know your story and why you're interested in the executive's field. If you need help crafting your story, we recommend our CareerCast with professor Craig Wortmann about delivering a compelling career story.
- Research the executive's industry and company.
- Current Students:
A good place to start is our Conduct Research page, where you can learn about our more popular databases. We suggest First Research for quick industry research and OneSource or Capital IQ for company research. Our research roadmaps (by industry and by function) are also quite helpful, but they don't cover all fields.
The Career Resource Centers at Gleacher Center (Fisher CRC), Harper Center (Harper CRC), London campus (London CRC), and Hong Kong campus (Hong Kong CRC) offer many print and electronic resources to help you research industries and companies, including OneSource and Capital IQ. Visit your local resource center for access to these resources in person. For resources you can access remotely straightaway, please visit the Regenstein Library Electronic Resources for Alumni page.
Develop a list of questions. In many ways, the small group conversation will be similar to an informational interview. The types of questions you ask may be more sophisticated, but you need to be just as prepared. Don't rely on others to carry the conversation. Here are some questions you may want to consider:
Why did you do X, Y, and Z?
What was the most interesting thing you've done?
What one thing most helped you to get to where you are today?
What was the best/worst professional experience you've had?
What was that door-opening opportunity that was pivotal to your career progression?
What was that door-opening opportunity that you wish you had taken?
What advice do you have for someone who is starting his or her post-MBA career?
What do you wish someone had told you while you were still in business school?
What suggestions do you have for someone looking to transition into your industry without prior experience in the field?
- Come prepared to listen and ask questions that will be relevant to the whole group and not overly specific to your particular situation. As a reminder, this is not a formal presentation or a recruiting event; it's an educational conversation structured around the executive's areas of expertise and your questions about the field.
- Remember that there will be other people in the room. Everyone will be eager to ask questions, so take care not to dominate the conversation.
- Ask for the executive's contact information so you can follow up afterward. A quick message expressing gratitude for what you found valuable about the conversation can help you grow a budding relationship. One participant in a previous Executive-in-Residence program made a major career decision as a result of his small group coaching session. When he emailed the executive to thank her and give her an update on his progress, he gained a strong career advocate.