I attended the MBACSC Conference (sorry for the redundancy) in Keystone, Colorado. It was a great event and I look forward to attending the next MBACSC in Seattle (budgetary restrictions willing).
One of the presentations that really hit home from me was by Steve Dalton who talked about the 2 hour job search and the upcoming book of the same title. I talked about networking (or NOTworking) in a previous blog post, but Steve’s presentation really drove the point home. As many in the career development / counseling field know, most jobs (80%) are filled by referral through the hidden job market, often before they are ever posted online. That is why those who look for online postings and apply often feel like their application and resume gets sucked into a black hole.
I was really happy to hear that it wasn’t just my students that were experiencing this phenomenon and that there was a plan to get around it. We have been working diligently with our MBA students to impress upon them how vital networking is to their initial search for internships and their LIFELONG career goals. Networks are how people get hired a majority of the time. Now that I have seen a structured plan on how to build a strategy on who students should be networking with and how to conduct the informational interview, I am looking forward to sharing that with our students.
Can’t wait for Steve’s book to come out so I can get a copy for the office.
The other presentation that was really great was by Dan Beaudry a Director at QS and it focused on International students and the job search and hiring process. Dan also has a book, “The International Student’s Guide to Finding a Job in the U.S.” and his presentation was down to earth honest and was based on his times as both a career counselor and a recruiter for companies that hire international students. More great information to take back to my students.
Lastly, I was asked recently about emphasizing job searches for internationals rather than domestic students. As other career counselors can attest, we do not place students into jobs and never show favoritism to one student over another. We do assess job search complications and offer solutions to students. International students have issues that domestic students do not and it is our job as counselors to make them aware of those issues and offer strategies to help those students address those issues on their own. My opinion is that the best talent should be awarded the job, regardless of what their immigration status is. Some do not agree and some businesses chose to trade a certain level of talent for ease of process. That being said there is a tenant of this job that I take very seriously that should be made clear; personal opinions of career counselors regarding immigration or other political issues should have no influence on the process of teaching career development. Our job is to give every student access to every career development tool that they avail themselves of, regardless of how we feel individually about the process. I hope this will clear up any misconceptions that readers may have with previous postings.
It was great meeting other MBA Counselors, employers, and vendors at MBACSC. Can’t wait to see them all again in Seattle in 2012.