Last couple of weeks were a little crazy!!! For those of you who don’t know what NSHMBA is: National Society of Hispanic MBAs… They host a big, important conference and career fair every year, this time it was in Chicago and that’s where I was last week.
The way it works: you sign up previously for the conference and then you can start looking at the companies going there to hire. This year it was something like 250 different companies and they usually go to hire interns and full time MBAs; if not, they will be receiving resumes and talking to you. So, you can apply to the jobs previously and if they think you are a good candidate they will call you to make an appointment for an interview while at the conference. Also, you can go there and if there’s a company you are really interested in and you don’t have an interview pre arranged, pitch them and eventually they will invite you to interview that same day or the next one!! Crazy… even more if you consider that over 1,000 MBAs from all over, with all types of backgrounds will be there doing the same thing you are doing! My advice and what worked very well for me this year, is to start preparing yourself as soon as possible, apply to jobs in advance and make good applications, that way at least you can secure some interviews before arriving! I was able to interview with three different companies, two of them I had already arranged before getting there…. So I feel it was a successful trip for me, even more if you also consider these are companies that don’t recruit at Smith, so hadn’t I gone to the conference , most likely I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to interview with them!
This all sounds nice and cool: Chicago + bunches of MBAs + interviewing with very big, important companies! However, I want to emphasize on the amount of work and preparation there was behind all this… To have a good chance with any of these companies you need to work hard, prepare your resumes, do career workshops, practice your “elevator pitch”, do mock interviews, prepare cover letters for each application, and the list of things to do previous your trip goes on and on…. Plus, if you are invited to a specific interview you need to prepare to talk to THAT specific company and for THAT specific position….
Well, you have no idea what it was like those previous days to my trip to Chicago! I was going a little bit crazy preparing the best I could for the two interviews I had been invited to! It was one of those times when your ability to prioritize was crucial: I had work, I had finals, I had deliverables for school, plus all the career stuff…. I had to prioritize; otherwise I wouldn’t have made it. Prioritizing didn’t mean leaving anything aside though, it meant assigning amounts of time to everything according to the relevance it all had, and I have to say, at this point the career and doing a good job in my interviews was on the top of my list!
But…. Don’t get freaked out by all this stress… It was also a LOT OF FUN!!! I don’t know if you’ve been to Chicago but it is a beautiful, fun place to go, especially with your school friends …. We did lots of sightseeing, took many pictures, eat lots of deep dish Chicago style pizza and went out at nights! Every hard effort has a fun reward when you are an MBA, lol, or at least I like to think so…. I like to think that after all the effort put in the previous weeks, some fun had to come along… (There you go a couple of pictures of what the fun was like!)
Well, that’s all for today. So long readers, and I will keep my fingers crossed that something good comes out of the interviews; hopefully I will be invited to a second round somewhere… who knows! I’ll keep you posted anyhow…