Would you like to land on that dream job of yours at the Boston Career Forum? I'm one of the hiring managers in the 2022 Boston Career Forum, responsible for the "last round" interviews. I met many talented individuals over rounds of interviews in the three-day event. Here are 3 tips in succeeding at the Boston Career Forum.
(Source: Media from WIX)
For the uninitiated, the Boston Career Forum is the biggest recruitment event for bilinguals Japanese-English speakers. If you'd like to work for a company with strong presence in Japan, it's a great event for hopeful candidates to land on the job of their choice. That said, it's also a marketplace for employers to brand their companies and recruit the most talented individuals in joining their company.
Let's face it - almost every candidates dresses similarly in a neat black suit, freshly pressed white shirt and black bag. With over 8,000 candidates coveting for the same limited opportunities, how would you succeed in the Boston Career Forum?
Assuming you've done the basic (your extensive research and pre-application in advance), here are 3 simple tips to secure that role of your dream.
1. Sell Yourself Through Stories
Always give examples.
Instead of saying you have "great communication skills", show that you have great communication skills from the way you communicate.
Instead of saying you are "resilient", tell the hiring managers through a story of how you overcame an tough obstacle and what was the outcome. Be as concise as you can with your stories. Always demonstrate why you should get the job through examples.
What happens if you don't have any stories or examples?
Strong academic performance only demonstrates the fact that you are able to comprehend teaching at undergraduate level, and you could perform well on tests and exams.
For most jobs, how well you collaborate with others, how resilient you are, how proactive you are, your passion for the industry you are applying for all matters. Your grades is just a very small part of it.
Interviews is not just about how you well you speak on the interview day. What you talk about also matters. This means how you use your time during your years in university also matters.
Candidates with more stories to share are those heavily involved in leadership roles in school clubs, internships or part-time jobs.
Get involved as much as you can in school. That itself could increase your odds in success.
2. Be yourself. Feel the Chemistry.
I know it sounds very cliché but there's truth and wisdom to it. Hear me out.
If you strip down an interview to its bare element, it's really a conversation between two parties, getting to know one another.
Your hiring manager is accessing if you might be a fit in terms of skills, potential and culture fit for the role they are hiring for. They want to know who you are.
Apart from impressing your hiring manager, it's also your chance to know about the company. Who are the hiring managers? Is the company aligned with your values?
Maybe you are someone who crave for witty banters with your future manager. If your prospective employer believe in staying serious all the time (nothing wrong with that), but it could also signal that the company is not the right culture fit for you. Even if you could get a full time offer, you might not be happy in the long run.
Like any relationship, you would feel the chemistry. Prepare well, be yourself, let your personality shine through. This pays off in the longer run.
There are 8,000 others who are dressing similarly during the event but there's only one of you. Be yourself, be your own brand.
3. It's Okay to Think
When you get asked a question, it is fine to not answer immediately.
In fact, I would prefer candidates who ask for a minute or two to think things through.
This signals that you are composed. You are not afraid to ask for time to do something better (in this case, answer the question).
That said, use about half a minute to organize your thoughts. Don't leave the hiring manager hanging there for too long in silence. Roughly 30 - 45 seconds is a good rule of thumb.
Next Chapter of Life
This is a really exciting time for all candidates and it's also an extremely important next chapter of your life.
Sometimes I got asked what's the best decision to make when it comes to choosing that first job. You'd have to make that decision because it is your life. Everyone is different and wants different things.
The first couple of years of where you work would shape your workplace habits and attitude.
I'd say this - At the end of the day, the work could differ but you are spending close to 10 hours a day at a workplace. So if I've any advice, I'd say choose a company that demonstrates integrity, where people genuinely seem to like each other and the place offers exciting learning opportunities.