Why joining a virtual info session can change your career was originally published on WayUp Guide.
Why joining a virtual info session can change your career
In the midst of a pandemic, typical ways of meeting recruiters and expanding connections through means such as career fairs have been put on hold. Information sessions that students and recent graduates are used to are not happening and finding an internship or a job has been more difficult than ever in recent months. This does not mean that companies aren’t sharing knowledge and opportunities with young talent. Virtual information sessions hosted by company recruiters, universities, or career sites like WayUp’s Lunch and Learn Series, are still connecting young professionals with mentors and career opportunities as well as providing information and knowledge that can change your future.
Why Attend An Information Session?
Attending an info session first and foremost shows that you are both interested in the company or subject, and are proactive in advancing your career. They also provide valuable insight into the career that you are pursuing. For example, past guests at WayUp’s Lunch and Learn series included: Michael Seibel co-founder of Twitch and current CEO at Y Combinator, Cathy Polinsky, CTO at Stitch Fix, and Dan Rosensweig, CEO of Chegg. At the top of their fields, these presenters and those to come next can share advice to help advance your current career path and expose you to a different opportunity you were not aware of before.
Information sessions with specific companies reveal what recruiters in a certain field are looking for in qualified candidates, and what roles are currently available. Most of the time, the company hosting the session will offer interviews to the attendees of the session! Even if an interview is not guaranteed after a session, you now have the knowledge and insight to bring to your future job application, use it as an interview talking point, or create networking opportunities through digital connections. This is especially important for recent graduates who are looking for that perfect entry-level position.
How Can I Prepare?
Simply researching the company, and the individual speaking is the best way to get the most out of a virtual info session. You may not be able to speak one on one with the presenter since it is a large video conference, but being able to make connections between your research and the presentation is a great strategy. Come with a list of questions for a potential Q&A or just to even keep track of personally for potential future interactions or job applications.
What About After?
If a Q&A session does happen, be sure to ask well-thought-out questions. A good question shows that you were engaged throughout the presentation and can help you to stand out for any future opportunities at the company.
Share your findings from the session on social media! Posting about the session and tagging the company or speaker, can help you stand out and improve your professional network. Lastly, remember to follow-up! Chances are the leaders volunteering to put on info sessions are open to connecting with young talent. Use the notes that you took during the session to find what really grabbed your attention and start a conversation! Sending a follow-up email with questions about what interested you in the presentation or their career path can be a great way to build a new connection and grow your network.
Where Can I Find Them?
Tons of companies are hosting information sessions over the next few months! We’ll be keeping the list below updated with all the different sessions hosted by WayUp—so be sure to check back here to see them all and apply!