NEPA Job Fair April 2010

I just returned from the NEPA Job Fair (April 13, 2010). I have to admit it has been awhile since I have been to a large Job Fair such as this. Many interesting companies were at attendance, and this is actually the first one I have been to that had live seminars with helpful tips and hints. I met quite a few engaging and interesting people. Most importantly, I came away from this experience re-energized for another salvo of Resume shots to potential employers.

Now, I was however a little disappointed in that some of the employers were merely giving out information on how to apply on their own websites, rather than taking serious candidates right then. There were many companies that I had already applied to online, but didn’t really learn anything new. I understand this is the way job searching and recruiting is going in this day and age. If you are not tech-savvy, or if you do not at least know how to send an email, your going to be left behind very soon. But on the other hand, I miss the face-to-face time that I had expected. Yes it is tedious to go out to companies to apply. But I had always felt it gave you a leg up, forced you to learn about the company you were applying, and cut down on the competition for those jobs. Applying online is fine, and definitely easy. Unfortunately I feel it is too easy. It is too easy to have many many thousands of people apply who may not be qualified unnecessarily clogging up what is already a bland email to a point were the actual qualified candidates are not even seen. This is more of a personal feeling on my part, I will always go were the technology takes me. I just feel the face time with employers is so very important.

With that said, it is not like I didn’t get the chance to talk to anyone. I enjoyed my time walking around. I spent 7 hours trying to get as much face-time as I could. I always have a resume handy, and was able to send off 38. Now combine those with the companies that force you to apply online, and it was still a very good day. I even have an interview with a staffing company coming up next Monday.

If your reading this, wish me luck! LOL!

One interesting person I met was actually at the final seminar of the day. I was mulling over whether I should stay. It had been 6 hours, I was tired, most of the employers had already left. But I was interested in what this seminar had to offer. It was explained to me ways to use social networks in the job hunt. I have always known the importance of social networks, but for some reason it hadn’t dawned on me to use online forms of social networks like Facebook, Linkedin, and Twitter. I was intrigued, so I decided to stay. I am glad I did. The speaker was a woman named Karla Porter ( I learned so many things about my job search and using social networks in this half hour, than I did the entire time I was at the Job Fair.  Including the knowledge of this very blog.  I was even able to get 10 minutes of one on one face-time speaking with her. I know she’ll be reading this eventually, and I want to personally thank her for her time and knowledge.

I came away from this Job Fair a new person. I have been searching for a career for quite awhile. I know what I can do, and I know what I can offer. Now is the time to get my face out there.

One of my favorite saying has always been from Walt Disney himself, “You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you.”

Keep believing and always move forward!