Monday, August 17, 2015

What to wear and how to prepare for TARGETjobs Events!

I have been at TARGETjobs Events for just over two years and the two questions we always get asked about our events are: What should I wear? and Do I need to do anything to prepare?

For our events we recommend that you dress as you would for a job interview. Get your outfit together and try it on in advance in front of a full-length mirror. Your outfit doesn’t have to be a plain black suit and white shirt – colour is fine. Nor do you have to go completely against your personality in terms of appearance – you’re looking for a good match between who you are and your potential employer.

The most common mistake we see? Footwear! Some of our events can involve a lot of walking and some of the venues we go to have a lot of stairs, so make sure you can walk in your shoes. On the other hand, don’t even consider wearing trainers (not even black ones!). We had someone turn up to an event in bright green trainers once, and needless to say, we turned him away. Ladies: if you want to wear high heels, there’s nothing wrong with bringing a smart pair of flat shoes in your bag as back-up – we do it all the time!

Men: wear a suit, shirt and tie (make sure they have both been ironed!) and wear matching socks.
Ladies: skirts or dresses should be no shorter than just above the knee and make sure you check the length is still OK when you sit down! Always try to avoid chipped nail polish, too.

Finally, keep any piercings discreet, and it is more than OK to wear religious dress.

What should I do to prepare for the event? Our top three things: research, research, research!

The most common misconception that our attendees have about events is that attending one is a fast-track to a grad scheme or internship. Our events are an introduction to an employer, so the more you put in to prepare, the more you are going to get out of it!

Recruiters are not there to answer the simple questions that you find on their websites. Hopefully you will have already done some research into the companies for your interview so attending the event is now your chance to find out the nitty gritty. Demonstrating your knowledge of a company will not only help you come across as someone who knows what you are talking about, but enables you to have better conversations and hopefully be more memorable. Remember there could be 50+ other students in the room that they will also talk to!

Have a list of questions written down in your pocket so you don’t leave the event thinking ‘I wish I’d asked that’. A few students also bring business cards. It’s not at all essential, but it can make you look professional and on the ball. It’s particularly helpful in networking situations if you meet people you’d like to stay in touch with.

Check out all of our upcoming events on the TARGETjobs Events website.

Best of luck and I can't wait to meet you at our next event!


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