You’ve just booked your first MBA fair – now what? What can you do now to ensure that you’re prepared for the big day? What are some things you can do at the fair to help you get the most out of the event? And lastly, what should you do AFTER the fair to further help your cause?
Don’t go to your next MBA fair without first reading these important tips:
1. Research, research, research. Research the programs that you’re interested in hearing more from at the event. Be sure not just to browse through the material, but to research the programs relative to what they can offer you based on your specific post-MBA career goals. When you’re at the event asking questions, you’ll look foolish asking basic questions whose answers appear on the program’s homepage. Direct, specific questions about how the school will help you fulfill your goals make a great first impression on school reps.
2. Dress and act professionally. Don’t be too casual in dress or in attitude, or school representatives may assume that you’re not serious about your future business education and future career. These schools are looking for sincere, thoughtful candidates. Also, keep in mind that people generally act differently depending on what they’re wearing – dress casually and you’ll act casually, dress professionally and most likely it’ll professionalize your attitude and demeanor.
3. Make personal contact with the reps AND follow up. You attend an MBA fair to learn about the various programs and to meet representatives, but also to make a good impression. Make sure the reps remember you by a) acting courteous and asking interesting questions, and b) following up with the representatives. Appropriate follow up actions includes sending an email in which you identify which event you met at, remind the rep of your goals and some of the key conversation points you discussed, and attach a resume (you can send a resume even if you handed the rep a resume at the fair). Inappropriate follow up moves include calling the rep directly or acting aggressively in any way. Remember, you’re trying to make a good impression – no harassing or stalking please! The reps note who follows up and how they do so.
Keep these best practices in mind and enjoy your next MBA fair!