Why Network? Boom you’re welcome!

 

According to ABC News 80% of jobs are landed through networking, so stop spending so much time applying and get working on networking.

 

  1. Does everyone in your network know you are looking for the next step in your career? If no, let them all know, keep them updated on your opportunities, interviews, and offers. This is not only great marketing of yourself but also helps trigger peoples minds the next time they hear of a job opening.
  2. Why LINKEDIN? – It is in all caps for a reason. It is an unlimited resource for staying connected to your professional network but also helps you connect to people who you may want to work with. I landed a job interview with a company I really wanted to work for just by asking the CEO on Linkedin. So take some time connect with everyone you know and post about topics in your industry to the newsfeed. This shows you are educated of what is happening in your field but also helps people remember you for what you are great at.
  3. Relationships are like pulses. You need to pump in order to keep them alive. Start going to coffee, lunch, or dinner with people that might be able to help you or keep you informed on another career opportunity. This takes a lot of work. It may seem weird to contact someone who you haven’t talked to for a year but just do it! Most people respond well.
  4. Once you have some momentum in your career, start helping others and pay it forward. It seems simple but most people get into their offices, sit at their comfy desk, and never think to maintain relationships outside their inner circle. So pump the relationship and be there for people when they are exploring their own careers.
  5. Send Thank yous! Why is it so hard? Oh wait, it isn’t. This creates a great image for yourself when you show gratitude and also makes you happier.
  6. Being happy, staying focused, and pursuing your passion should make you excited in the morning when networking. If not, maybe it is time change it up and find a new career you want.

posted by Zack Sperow, Career Assistant

Congratulations! You have your resume in order, and the Career Fair is around the corner, you’re practically home free. But there is one more hurdle to overcome before you can land that killer internship or career that you are there to snag! You have to actually talk to the recruiter! Many students have some sort of stigma about approaching a recruiter— they are like a god, wielding the power over your future with a heavy hand based on first impressions and snap judgments. Is there a way to guarantee they will like you? No. But you can give yourself the best chance of impressing them possible.Two students speaking with a recruiter at a career fair

Let’s divide this endeavor into two main categories: preparation and execution.

Part I— Preparation:

How do you prepare for talking to a recruiter at a career fair? Well the first step is going to be having all of your materials in order. Resume printed out, edited, crafted to fit their company as best as it can. Of course you already got help with this at career services, so you have that point crossed off your list. Next, you need to work on your presentation— if you show up in a sweatshirt and your favorite pair of worn jeans then nobody will take you seriously. Wear a shirt and tie or nice skirt/pants and jacket, which are reliable business casual outfits. If you want more information on what might be acceptable professional dress, there are plenty of blog posts on that if you need to read more. Or if you want to know what not to wear.

You need somethingImage of students talking with recruiters at various booths during Career Fair   to carry your papers in! Don’t use a backpack, use a portfolio: a nice notebook that you can neatly tuck your resume into, along with any papers the recruiter hands you. Finally, if your resume is on two pages, or if you are coming in with a cover letter too: don’t staple them together, instead use a paper clip.

The other part of preparation isn’t based on appearances, it’s what you have to know before you can go in, so go find out which companies are sending recruiters to OSU, go to their websites, and do some research on them. You should be able to talk with a recruiter about the company— about their goals, their projects, and their values. This is how you’re going to really impress them, because even if you’re wrapped up nicely, they won’t like somebody who can’t put in the work.

Part 2— Execution:

Now it is officially time to go to the Career Fair and get your name out there. I’ve gotten a lot of questions from students about how it is best to approach a recruiter. They feel awkward walking up and just asking about jobs and recruiting; it’s time for your research to come into play. One approach is to open up with a question or comment about a recent project their company has gone into:

“Hello, my name is Richard; I was really excited to see NVIDIA’s recent expansion into grid GPU for manufacturing and construction corporations.”

Another is to ask them about what their job is at the company, and how that job function might interact with the job you are looking to fill for them. Spring Career Fair 2014 photos 260Regardless of which approach you take, there is one key part to remember: recruiters and representatives are not some alien species that we need to observe from afar. Go up to them and express just as much interest in them as you hope they will express in you, and you will leave a good impression.

 

Good luck and see you there!

 

posted by Richard Thomas, Career Assistant

 

It’s easier than you think. And you can do all of these in the first two weeks of the term.

OSU Fall Image with Bicyclist and Yellow Tree
Welcome Back for Fall Term, Beavs!

1. Show up to all your classes. On time.

Showing up is the first step to success. It sounds simple, but sometimes getting past all of the basics of negotiating life every day can make it tricky to fully “show up”, and especially to be there on time and prepared. Showing up on time and fully engaging in the activity in front of you speaks volumes about your ability to manage a schedule, assess other people’s expectations and contribute meaningfully to growth and learning. All of those things are essential to growing successfully in your own career!

2. Talk to a professor.

Epic career development, like the epic responsibility of becoming a successful human, is not a project meant to be done in isolation. Translation: make friends and connect now. Professors are typically more experienced versions of people, who have not only had to build their own careers, but have also been instrumental in providing guidance and learning for countless others’ careers. Most hold office hours and are available for networking and learning from NOW, not just during the term before you graduate.

3. Check out clubs and activities on campus.

How will you know where you’re going unless you know where you’re coming from? Getting to know yourself is an unending process and is supported by getting involved and learning more about how you operate in different environments. And there are SO MANY options. Did you know that there is a club for people who like water? And one for zombie apocalypse survivalists? And a place that provides access to a TON of opportunities to volunteer?

4. Update your resume. Or start a new one!

Now is a fantastic time to put your professional YOU down on paper. Why? Because it’s waaaaaaay easier to stay updated in real time, rather than try to catch up after the fact. Do an awesome project in class? Write it down! Finish up that summer job? Write it down! Learn the basics of a new computer program? Write it down! If you want some help or advice on how to put a resume together, check in with our fantastic Career Assistants during drop-in resume/cover letter hours, which are Monday through Thursday, 1-4pm!

5. Schedule an appointment with a Career Consultant.

Planning a career can be overwhelming and confusing. Just choosing how to start is sometimes difficult! The good news is, you’ve already started. The better new is, you don’t have to do all of this alone! You have friends, family, classmates, professors, advisors, coaches and more who are available to help. If you’d like to talk to someone who isn’t in one of those categories, schedule an appointment with one of our Career Consultants, through your Beaver Careers account. They are friendly and knowledgeable coaches and counselors who can help you sort through all sorts of questions: What major do I want? How do I find a summer job? How do I work on my grades? Where can I get involved? What is the difference between a resume and CV? Who am I, anyway?? And more!

6. Build a LinkedIn account! And then clean up your Facebook account. And Twitter. And Instagram. And blog. And Vine. And . . .

This is, like all the other steps, an ongoing process. Social media, in some form, is here to stay. And there are more options for engagement every day! If you want to use social media for professional purposes, creating a LinkedIn account is a great way to start now. It’s free and easy to use, and provides a lot of help and information for getting started and building your profile. Once you’re on, you can connect with other professionals, search jobs and companies, participate in discussions, join groups and write and receive recommendations from others.

With other social media, just make sure you clean it up. Over half of hiring managers and employers out there are using social media searches as “informal background checks”. Be sure that what you put out there is what you want your future boss to see!

 

What else do you do to keep moving towards an epic career? Tips? Questions? Let us know!

 

 

As much as none of us want to think about it, the truth is that summer is rapidly coming to an end and the academic year looms like a (hopefully) friendly giant. Wherever you have been for the summer, there are ways of maximizing use of virtual resources like social media, and good ol’ traditional strategies like having a cup of coffee, to keep learning and developing in your career and academic life. through any season or transition. This is one view of how using both your in-person charms and your social media savvy may help you move forward and grow:identify on linkedin infographic August 2014

What do you think? How do you build professional relationships online and in person?

Recently, I attended an award ceremony for seniors graduating from the language department with honors. The opening speech was delivered by the very charismatic German professor Sebastian Heiduschke discussing an article he had read enumerating the reasons why GPA doesn’t really matter to employers. You can imagine that this was a little bit of a controversial topic, since every student receiving an award had at least a 3.8 GPA, and had worked hard to make it that way. But as Heiduschke took us on a journey through the facts, it became clear that GPA truly does matter.richard post July 2014

Let’s start off where he did, taking a look at the things that employers might look at rather than GPA:

 

  1. Knowing how you learn— understanding how you learn is an integral factor in success in education and work environments
  2. Applying theory to real-life situations— we have spent a lot of time getting a degree, we need to know how to use it too
  3. Time management— balancing a work schedule with a healthy social life, as well as all the individual parts of your work life
  4. Relevant Professional Experience— internships you have held, volunteer work in the field, and jobs that can relate to your professional life
  5. Portfolio Work— don’t tell me that all of the work you have done in school is for nothing, you can take all those big projects that you were so proud of and put them into a portfolio
  6. The ability to give and receive feedback— a lot of times employers will want to know that you can give input into a situation just as well as you can receive input and reform your projects
  7. Presentation Skills— not all jobs require this, but being able to present yourself well as well as present in front of others will help you in the interview process at the very least
  8. Writing Skills— and just general communications skills are important if you are going to be working with/for anybody
  9. Your Network— the people that will really get you the job are the people that can attest to your qualities as a worker and person, building healthy relationships with people will come in handy
  10. GPA— finally the employers will look at your GPA as a factor in your prospects as an employee

Heiduschke went on to point out that all of these skills are taught through language classes at OSU, whether they are taken to be a Baccalaureate Core requirement, a minor, or if you are a fully-fledged language major, you will pick up all of these skills in language classes. It just goes to show that language can be a key in our education even if it is not the focal point of our studies.

But, if employers are so interested in all of these before our GPA, why should we even care? Well, the fact of the matter is that all of these points will reflect on your GPA and so if you have a good one, you should flaunt it. But that doesn’t mean that you are out of luck if your grade point is sub-par, you will just have to work hard to get that foot in the door. Remember that it is your job to make yourself look good on your resume, so if you are lacking in one of these ten categories, it’s not the end of the world— just highlight the other categories and be confident in portraying what will make you unique to employers.

We spend a lot of time trying to develop skills that we lack in, but at the end of the day: “If you’ve got it, flaunt it.” We don’t get jobs by telling an employer which skills and attributes we don’t have, or what we are working on. We get the job by showing them just how good we are at what we do best.

 

~Thank you to Sebastian Heiduschke for inspiring this topic, and providing a large amount of input for the post.~

 

by Richard Thomas, Career Assistant

Take your career to new heights, know your strengths, and be known for being amazing at something!

zack for blog
Zack Sperow, our stylin’ Career Assistant

Branding is all about the promise you give to your customer. It tells people what they can expect from you. But in a personal branding point of view; your brand should be what people think of you when you leave the room.

So here is your assignment. First ask 15-30 people that are friends, family, and people who you may have just met within the past few weeks, what are 3-5 words that describe you (The GOOD AND THE BAD). By getting a diverse group of people you will have diverse results and see the changes in responses from someone who knows you more than 10 years to someone who knows you you less than 2 weeks.

Next compile all your responses, draw together conclusions, and find word families. When I did mine I was surprised to see that many people used words like outspoken, honest,  or opinionated. It made me wonder is that the lasting impression I want to have on people  when I leave the room is that I am opinionated; Is that something I want to change about myself? After some critical thought I decided that I am outspoken and I should own it. I am honest when others aren’t but my goal should always be for the common good. I mean  HONESTLY, I am probably always the person who will stop a stranger and say that their shirt is inside-out or that they have spinach in their teeth.

After I made some conclusions I developed my personal brand which is exuberant, ambitious, entrepreneur,  outspoken, and connected. I will use these words as my guiding force for my interaction with people and over my social media.

Take it to the next level by putting these branding words on your own business cards and using these words to sell yourself into a career.This a perfect opportunity to show people that you care about yourself and you are always looking for ways of self-improvement. I think most employers would agree that they rather hire the person that is always looking for ways to improve rather than the stay at home nobody.

 

Go BEAVS

 

posted by Zack Sperow, Career Assistant

Summer break is definitely one of the things I’ll miss the most when I graduate. It’s three glorious months of relaxation and sunshine. That being said, it’s also the perfect time to get things done before school starts up again and you’re really busy and stressed out again. Here are some ideas of ways to keep busy this summer, separate from doing summer classes or working.

Deirdre photo for blog
Deirdre Newton, wonderful Career Assistant!

 

1. Update your resume so that next time you need it you won’t have to do nearly as much work! Career Services will be open all summer for career counseling appointments, so make an appointment to come in for resume and cover letter help!

 

2. Look into professional memberships relevant to your career. Buying memberships while you’re still a student is often significantly cheaper and a great resume builder. You can also get access to a lot of great resources, including job listings that you wouldn’t otherwise be able to access.

 

3. Go to a music festival or concert. So, this actually isn’t career development related. But honestly, when is a better time to do this than over the summer! There are a ton of festivals and concerts happening over the summer, taking advantage of the hordes of college students with time to spare. Treat yourself  and enjoy being young and carefree.

 

4. Get letters of recommendation if you foresee yourself needing them soon. Whether you’re applying for graduate school in the next year or trying to get a scholarship, summer is a good time to contact professors for letters of recommendation. They’re also most likely a bit less busy than during the normal school year, so it’s advantageous on both ends.

 

5. Learn a new skill or pursue new knowledge. Whether it’s relevant to your career or not, summer is a great time to learn new skills, read books, and catch up on TEDtalks. You could try learning a language, an instrument, a computer program, a programming language…the possibilities are endless. Maybe you’ve always wanted to do photography on the side – go for it!

 

What plans do you have for the summer? We’d love to know!

posted by Deirdre Newton, Career Assistant

Whether you are just starting college, getting close to graduation, or a recent graduate, there are some things you should know about this so-called “real world”. Many people will tell you that your college years are the best years of your life. For some people, this may be true, but to be honest it is just a very distinct phase in your life. Personally, when I was in college, all I wanted to do was get out. But then once the novelty of my last free summer wore off, I just wanted back inside.  In truth, there are both pros and cons to having a full-time “grown-up” job. Either wrebecca grow up blogay you want to look at it, you can’t stay a student forever.

Pro: Depending on what kind of work you are doing, generally your weekends are finally what they were intended to be. A time to rest, catch up on some household chores, and best of all…have fun! There is no longer that nagging sensation that you should be doing homework or the guilt that comes with procrastination. When I first graduated, I spend most of my weekends hiking, shopping, and decorating.

Con: You no longer have extended vacations three times a year. In spite of the wonder of free weekends, there is a downside. The days of month long winter vacations, three month long summer vacations, and Spring Break are long gone. Now you are subject to whatever system is in place for vacation time. When you are first-starting out, it is unlikely that you will have any. That means your winter holiday celebration turns into a three day weekend, rushing to visit family and then rushing to come back.

Pro: You earn a decent wage! No longer do you have to live tiny pay-check to tiny pay-check. Or, in some people’s case, credit card bill to credit card bill while racking up student loans. You can actually afford things like new shoes when your old ones wear out, as opposed to duck taping them together. Don’t get me wrong, you might not be making a huge salary when you graduate, but at least you will probably be making enough to not feel guilty about treating yourself every now and then.

Con: Your amount of bills rise. Suddenly you are expected to own professional clothing and a reliable car to get you to and from work. In addition, bills that perhaps your parents were willing to cover during your college years, are suddenly now your responsibility. This means health insurance, car insurance, cell phone bill, cable, etc.

Pro: Being an adult means people take you seriously. There is not anyone micro-managing your every move. When you say you are sick, people believe you. When you want to use your vacation time, no one questions it. If you are five minutes late, people assume that you have a good excuse.

Con: People expect you to act like an adult. This means that you really do have to have a legitimate reason to miss work. You can’t take extra vacation time. People rely on you to get things done on time. Sometimes this might mean working weekends or late nights. And finally, you cannot do things other than work, at work (candycrush, facebook, etc.).

 

Overall, being an adult can be pretty awesome. But there are some adjustments that you have to make when transitioning out of college. Not being able to be with your family over winter holidays can be a real bummer. But your boss is not like a professor. If you miss work, you could be fired for breaking your contract and consequently face unemployment. Thus, it is best to start thinking about how you can prepare for these reality checks as soon as possible.

adriana blog pic
Adriana Aguilar, our fantastic Career Assistant

As week 10 draws near (cue melodramatic music), the library gets dangerously close to reaching capacity, our eating habits shift from an occasional veggie to eating taco bell for dinner at 1 AM every night, Dixon becomes nonexistent along with sleep and our stress levels reach heights that parallel Simba’s when the stampede of wildebeests come careening for him. Before the all night cramming commences I thought it would be wise to revisit the idea of taking a study break to de-stress. In no way am I debunking the importance of a study break, because lets be real, you are some sort of superhuman if you have the ability to study for 8 hours straight without taking a breather. What I’m suggesting is that we rethink what is done during this precious time we set aside to reset our psyches.

More often than not study breaks consist of scrolling down our Instagram feed for “five minutes” which translates into going your celeb crush’s Instagram pics while we envision ourselves as their spouse for the next hour. Now, this may be a study break you’re perfectly OK with and every once in a while the occasional imagination of what it would be like to be Mrs. Efron is necessary. That being said, I’ve realized recently is that there are far better ways to spend a study break that may allow us to de- stress while we also take a break from finals studying. For instance, we all have a gazillion things on our weekly to-do lists, in which case very rarely do all of the tasks on our lists all get done. I bet you can guess where this is going. So, if you’re studying at home and can no longer rehearse the circulation of blood through the chambers of the heart, or whatever it may be, instead of giving in to the black hole we call Facebook, or better yet, Pintrest, try knocking out a quick task on your to-do list. Some ideas may include…

  • Putting a load of laundry in, or better yet, folding that already done load of laundry
  • Cleaning out the inside of your car
  • Cooking up those veggies before they go bad
  • Finally taking off that chipped nail polish that’s been lingering for weeks
  • Changing that hallway light that went out months ago
  • Cleaning your room
  • Weeding your front yard as you soak up some vitamin D the natural way
  • Unloading the dishwasher
  • Preparing library snacks and dinners for finals week

These are just a few ideas, but I think you get my drift. In the end doing tasks that require little to no brainpower instead of lifelessly feeding into Facebook is a win-win for you. Your brain gets a break from cramming while you free up some time in the future by doing a task or two you would have had to do later. And honestly, it feels better. It feels better to transform your jungle of a yard overgrown with dandelions (into something that resembles an actual yard) than it does to browse your Facebook timeline to find out that your friends in California are already on summer break… It feels better to know that you have dinners prepped for finals week than it does to tweet “sleep is for the weak.” In addition, when you take a study break in the wee hours of the night, getting up and doing something will most likely have a greater affect in waking you up and recharging your battery than sitting and staring at a computer screen would.

We have a tendency to procrastinate in ways that are essentially dead ends and instead we could be using that same time to procrastinate in ways that are beneficial to other areas of our lives. Imagine that, there is such a thing as positive procrastination, so long as it doesn’t end up fully distracting you from your studying altogether. As a rule of thumb, your study break should take no longer than an hour max. That being said, these things may seem mundane, but one of the biggest struggles college students have is managing their time which is arguably one of, if not, the biggest contributor to stress. There is so much on our plates, one too many things we’re trying to juggle, but if we simply change the way we “waste time” by habitually taking study breaks that incorporate brainless tasks, I think it’s possible to be less stressed and more satisfied people as a result. So here’s to cleaner rooms, shiny cars, library snacks and clean socks (for once)! Let’s show week 10 what we’re made of!

posted by Adriana Aguilar