Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Speed Networking Tips

The Speed Networking Event is coming up tomorrow evening.
If you are planning to attend, and this is your first speed networking event, the following are a few tips for a successful event:

Be Prepared

During a speed networking session it is very important to be well prepared, efficient and goal oriented. There is very little time for small talk in contrast to other networking sessions. Prepare yourself by knowing your own career goals. These can be incorporated into your elevator pitch.

Prepare your elevator pitch

An elevator pitch is a 30 second professional description of yourself, what you are currently doing, what you’ve done, and what you hope to do in the future. Prepare a pitch before the event and think through the most important things you would like to communicate. Refine your message so that it sounds natural. This pitch is not always something you say all at once. They are points you want to highlight throughout the conversation.

A good pitch can be constructed with the following parts:

1.Your name, year in school and program of study.
2.What activities/jobs you have done/currently doing to build your professional skills.
3.End it by including something about your career goals.

Be honest and show respect

Introduce yourself and don't be in too much of a hurry to give your pitch. Allow the other person to begin the conversation if they wish. Letting the other person talk first shows your willingness to listen to the other person.

Be aware of your personal brand

Before and during the event, reflect over how you can work with your personal brand. Are you dressed accordingly, are you communicating your core values and your basic principles? Be aware of your posture, your body language and note the way your counterpart are responding to the way you are delivering your message.

Organize and exchange your business cards effectively

First, make sure you bring business cards. After signing up for the speed networking event, you get 30 free business cards from our office.
Secondly, have them in a business card holder in a convenient location to give to the people you meet.

Take notes

Try to take notes about everyone you meet. You can always write a note on the back of their business card. Anything that will help you remember your conversation and why they may be a good connection. It can be useful to bring a pad of paper and pen.

Follow up

One of the most important aspects of networking is to follow up with the contacts you made during the event. Place a phone call, connect on LinkedIn, or send an e-mail so that the person gets a more lasting impression of you and what you do. This shows professionalism as well as respect for the time the other person took to meet you.

*There are still some openings available for students to sign up if you have not already.

For more information on the event and to register visit:

Date: Thursday, March 31, 2011
Time: 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Location: AMU Ballrooms A&B
Attire: Business Casual or better

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

What Is That?!?

Do you have a smart phone? If yes, get it out. Now, download a barcode scanner app and scan the image at the left. Open the link in a browser and - Voila! - you are on the CSC webpage. Amazing.

This little doodad is called a QR Code. Some of you have heard of this already, seen them in magazines, or possibly even made your own. Who cares? Well, you might... read on.

QR Codes are the next big thing for job seekers - at least that is what I would say if I were a betting girl. Sure, they have been around for a while to do mostly boring things, but now they are also a handy little addition to a job seeker's resume. Why, you ask? Well, because if you use one you will stand out as the tech-savvy, forward-thinking applicant that you truly are!

Still have no idea what I am talking about, but maybe a little curious? Check out this blog by Lindsey Pollak and this blog by Ed Potter for the nitty-gritty!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Your Social Secruity Number- Keep it Private

A student recently stopped in to share that one of the positions posted on MU Career Manager asked for her Social Security Number in the initial online application. I was surprised by this so I decided to check it out for myself.

Indeed she was correct. In order to apply online, applicants need to include their Social Security Numbers. I decided this needed further investigation. I called the organization, which is local, and asked to speak to the Human Resources Department. As often happens, the person answering the phone was hesitant to put me through. I explained my concern and shared that I wanted to know why, at this initial stage, was a Social Security Number requested. Instead of putting me through she put me on hold and returned with a reply. She said that if candidates didn't want to provide it then they could just fill in all ones. What?!?!?!? No explanation was given as to why it was requested in the first place.

Here is my advice to job seekers with regard to confidential information:
  • Do NOT share your Social Security Number (or any other private information such as bank accounts [that's a whole other story!]) unless you know why it is being requested.
  • If it is requested, fill in the spaces with all ones or call and ask the purpose of such request.

Times when you might legitimately give your Social Security Number

  • At the time of hire, you will need to give it in order to be paid.
  • If a background check is required

Keep your private information private. Unfortunately, there are bad people out there who are looking to take advantage of job seekers. If you have a gut feeling something isn't right, let us know and we can check it out for you.


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Speed + Networking = AMAZING Experience

What is it?  
One-on-one networking with alumni and employers by industry; therefore space is limited. Students will be matched by industry to speak with professionals during speed-networking followed by open networking with all attending professionals.

How much does it cost?  
Registration cost is $5.00 and includes:
• Heavy appetizers and beverages
• 30 FREE business cards. To order your business cards you must stop by the Career Services Center in Holthusen Hall, 1st floor - two doors east of varsity theater.

How do you register?
Register Online through MU Career Manager based on your chosen industry:

Payment Information:
• Pay online in MU Career Manager with a credit card.
• Pay with cash or check at the Career Services Center in Holthusen Hall, 1st floor - two doors east of varsity theater.

What should you wear? 
Business Casual or better.  

Sponsored by Career Services and Alumni Relations

Questions, contact
Bethany Olson.