You’ve heard of “speed dating” – right? If not, just Google the term. Essentially, you move from table to table during an event meeting lots of people in a limited time frame. The goal is to find someone you’re interested in to take to the next step – a date. The beauty of this process is no long-term commitment with someone you don’t connect with — you’re only required to be with that person for a few minutes (typically 10 minutes) before moving to the next table.
This speed concept has migrated into the job search arena. Why? Well, frankly, who has time for the old fashion way of career fairs? With LinkedIn, do you really want to waste your time standing in line to hand deliver your resume? And do recruiters really want to sit at a table for over 4 hours waiting for you to hand deliver your resume? The answer is NO!
During your job search, if you have an opportunity to attend speed interviewing take advantage of it. But remember for it to be successful, you need to spend time preparing.
So what should you expect? Well the method is similar to speed dating in that you have a set amount of time to meet with each company representative. During your time with that company representative, they will figure out if you’re a good fit for their company. Concurrently, you’ll figure out if you like the company. If there’s a match, then you schedule a follow-up meeting.
Think of this method as wine tasting – you’re sampling many companies at one event. Even if you’re interested in only a few companies at the event, use the time with other company representatives to better understand your industry. This information will help you as you progress in your career.
Below are 5 tips to make your experience in speed interviewing successful.
1. Bring something to collect business cards and information you receive from company representatives. You’ll need this information when following up with thank you notes.
2. Bring copies of your resume and business cards. If you’re unemployed go to a nearby office supply store and get business cards made. Keep it simple with your name, phone number, email and customized LinkedIn URL.
3. Prepare by reviewing any information provided to you before the event. Some events post job opportunities online. Other events may only list companies attending. Spend time researching each company.
4. Practice responding to questions succinctly. You’ll have limited time with each company representative so you’ll want to make good use of your time.
5. Remember your career is about building relationships. Even if you’re not interested in a company, you are interacting with a person … and you may encounter that person later in your career.
Good luck with speed interviewing. Let us know if our tips were helpful.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Niv Persaud, CFP®, CDFA™, CRPC®, is the Founder of Transition Planning & Guidance, LLC. Her firm bridges the gap between financial planning and coaching. As a Transition Consultant, she offers sage advice in all aspects of life – financial, personal and professional. Niv does not manage money and does not sell financial products. Her services include spending plan development, divorce financial review, life strategy and professional progression. Niv actively gives back to her community through her volunteer efforts. She believes in living life to the fullest by cherishing friendships, enjoying the beauty of nature and laughing often — even at herself. Her favorite quote is by Erma Bombeck, “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say ‘I used everything you gave me’.”