It’s time for the big day. You’ve studied, you’ve prepped your suit, and you’ve spruced up your resume. No—it’s not time for the interview, not yet! It is the day of the career fair.

A strong career fair can help you get your career off on the right foot by putting you in control of what you are hoping to gain out of employment. Rather than being part of the revolving door of candidates, the career fair gives you the chance to speak with multiple employers in the same day. For the person who is well-prepared and well-qualified, a career fair can lead to multiple opportunities and leave more doors open for exploration than you may have considered. However, if you aren’t prepared for what you’ll find, a career fair can be a humbling and unproductive.

What to Do:

When the big day approaches, have plenty of copies of your resume already printed on high-quality resume paper. You want to show that you are prepared for whatever is in front of you. Demonstrate your readiness and ability to take on unknown challenges by being a step ahead of the game and ready to go with whatever is asked of you in the moment.

There is an old saying that when looking for employment you need to dress for the job you want, and the career fair is the place to show that you know what that looks like. First impressions make a lasting impression, so be ready to communicate with potential employers confidently and emphatically so that you stand out in the crowd.

What Not to Do:

Don’t be caught off guard about who is going to be at the career fair, and what sorts of positions they are hiring for. This information is available online, and you can look up the company and information about the position prior to speaking with them at the fair. This will give you insight regarding what employer you ought to be seeking out while you are there, and what you should say to them to make the best impression. Demonstrate your interest in the company by having questions ready for specific employers.

The career fair is a great stepping stone in helping you to set up an interview, so take it seriously and put yourself out there. Having your MBA makes you competitive in the job market, and so the career fair is just one place where those opportunities will arise. Believe in yourself, stay positive, and keep pushing forward. In the end you will find the career that makes the most sense for you.

Stand out from the crowd and make your next move with Georgia College’s online MBA degree. Learn more about the benefits of an MBA here.