There are many advantages to LIVE-chatting. It can save you time; it can save you money; it’s super convenient.
Though LIVE-sessions are easy to access and attend, remember that the more work and effort you put into it, the more likely you are to benefit your career. In other words, what you give is what you get.
But don’t you worry. We are sharing our very best tips on how to prepare for your next LIVE-chat. And who knows? It might just lead to your next job opportunity.
Before the event
Update your profile
Whether you’re LIVE-chatting, attending a virtual career fair or just applying the old fashioned way, your Graduateland profile will be matched up against the requirements of the positions available. The more information you have on your profile, the better can we direct you towards the companies that offer relevant career opportunities for you.
What’s even more critical is that recruiters can see your public profile and might ask you questions about it—so why not make sure to update it with as much detail as possible?
Pro tip: recruiters find the sections Education, Work Experience and Language Skills quite essential, so make sure these are on point.
The higher percentage your profile completion reaches, the higher are your chances for getting jobs that are relevant for you—and not to mention: it increases your chances of getting headhunted on the go.
Research the employers
The secret weapon that gives you a considerable advantage during your live chat? One word: Research.
Understanding the company you are interested in means that you’re able to focus your message in a way that resonates with the company you are chatting with.
Reading up on and researching employers is one of the best ways to prepare yourself. Why? Well because employer research is a great way to learn about what the company does. The recruiters are not interested in answering questions like, “What does your company do?” This, you should already know.
Instead, you can position yourself more strongly asking questions like; “I am super interested in the [new product] you’ve just launched. It is right up my alley and highly relevant to my interests in [area of interest]. Can you tell me a bit more about where you are heading at with that?”
Using these insights to your advantage should make the conversation flow and boost your confidence while chatting. Here is a list of things you can learn about an employer when you put on the detective hat:
- Which skills and what kind of experience does the company value?
If not explicitly mentioned in the job ad, go through the company profile or website and look for how they describe themselves and the people already working there. What kind of team do they have?
- Who are the key players at the organisation?
The managers, C-levels and other prominent personnel often say a lot about a company. Read about them in the ‘About’ section or have a look at their LinkedIn profiles.
- What are the latest news and updates?
Have the company just launched a new product? Have they hired a new CEO? Hosted an event? Read through their website and social media channels to get an update on the company’s latest news and updates.
- Culture, mission and values
Most companies are not only looking for an employee that can perform certain tasks; they are also looking for someone who is a good fit culturally. Pay attention to what the company have written about values, vision and mission, or have another look at their social media channels for an inside scoop.
Preparing like this means you’re able to ask specific, targeted questions which signals to the company that you’re really interested and that you’ve done your homework.
Prepare an elevator pitch highlighting your skills, background, and your career ambitions
Your job is to convince the recruiter that you are who they’ve been looking for. A great pitch is crucial for introducing yourself and convincing the recruiter to look no further.
Even if you have the right qualifications, a poor pitch will hurt your case. For examples, you don’t need to share the details of that first paper route you had at the age of 13. Keep it brief, keep it relevant, and you’ll do alright. Most often than not, less is more. Prioritise the most important things you want to share and stick to those. Check out our guide on how to create a convincing elevator pitch.
An example could be:
“I recently graduated from [university] where I studied branding and communication. Throughout my studies, I’ve worked hard to gain hands-on experience with social media strategy and content marketing from [company]. I see that you are currently looking for Social Media Strategist. How do I increase my chances of landing an interview?”
Pro tip: Remember that recruiters not only want to hear about you as an ‘employee’ but also as a person. Most recruiters nowadays are looking for people, not just a candidate. Tell the recruiters why you are the right person to join their team.
Prepare good questions
Perhaps the typical perception of a job interview is that the focus is on you to talk about yourself and why you’re right for the part.
While this still holds true in a LIVE-chat, you’ll probably experience that there is a lot more back and forth with you asking a lot of questions too.
That’s why you shouldn’t expect the recruiter to do all the work. Instead, take care of your share. Preparing your own questions can be a good way of leading the conversation in a direction where you can show your best sides, your most relevant skills, and show your interest in the company.
This could be questions such as, “What does success look like here?”, or “What are you most passionate about in your job?”
During the event
Ask yourself: What am I trying to achieve with this chat?
You probably have some idea why you are chatting with a company. Maybe you are looking for a student job. Perhaps you’re looking for a company to collaborate with on your thesis. Or it may be that you are simply trying to expand your network.
Be sure you know exactly why you’re chatting. It will increase your chances of a quality chat and increase the chances of a match made in heaven.
It also shows the company that you are serious and professional and not monopolising their time by chatting about irrelevant points.
Take the lead
Even though you can be headhunted through the portal (especially if you complete your profile), you can create more opportunities for yourself by taking the initiative and actively initiate chats with recruiters.
Remember they’re there to chat with candidates and more than willing to get in touch with people who show that they’re ready to go that extra mile. Plus, most of them probably have multiple chats going on.
Pro tip: Research and approach as many companies as possible—even the ones you didn’t know before.
You may think that because the recruiters cannot see you, you should just join the chat in your pyjamas and worn out slippers.
However, studies show that dressing up as a professional will help keep you in the right job-hunting mindset. There is power in dressing the part—more so than you might think. If you don’t believe us, take a moment to Google the so-called “Lab Coat Effect” (or Sexy Underwear Effect).
You may have heard that people find someone dressed in a white lab coat more trustworthy but did you know that your clothing choices have a similar effect? Take advantage of this by dressing the part—you may just experience the effects of higher confidence and self-esteem.
After the event
Don’t let all your hard work before and during the event go to waste. Now that the hard part is over, it’s time to seal the deal by following up.
At the chat, be sure to find out if you can reach out to the person you chatted with again. Perhaps there is a relevant colleague you could call up for more information or a quick coffee meeting?
Write something like; “Thank you so much for all the information—it’s been so helpful. I am really interested in this position and will send you an application very soon. Is it possible for me to reach out to you again if I have other questions?”
Leave your mark. Though you may or may not get hired on the spot, these small extra things might be the difference that leads you to the next step in your career.
After the chat, you should then follow up with an email referencing your conversation. This is an excellent opportunity to show your continued enthusiasm for the role. Perhaps you can highlight an important thing you talked about or mention something interesting about yourself that didn’t come up during the chat.
These little things can make all the difference in the world.