How to Stand Out in A Virtual Career Fair

By Mel Sim

This article will come in handy when you attend our e-career fairs this year!

The buzzword these days? Virtual. Virtual classes, virtual gym sessions, virtual meetings with your colleagues and yes, even virtual hangouts.

And if you are a young talent looking for work – virtual career fairs!

Just like the ones we’ve been organising since 2020, no thanks to COVID. If you thought we went all out last year with our virtual events, this year we have even more in stored for you. Like our upcoming Aspire+ Networking Series that’s happening this 25 May. The premier networking event is the one virtual event you don’t want to miss if you want to network with some of the biggest names in the country. This year, our theme The Innovative World of Data Science and AI will give you the opportunity to rub shoulders with prominent figures in the tech field such as Sharala Axryd, Founder and Group CEO of The Centre of Applied Data Science; Chua Chai Ping, Human Resources Director of Experian; Chen Fong Tuan, Director of HR and General Affairs at Samsung Malaysia Electronics; Dr Shameem Farouk, Head of Digital Skills Development at Maybank; and Sabrina Zuraimi, a Data Scientist with Yahoo! Japan.

So how you stand out in that sea of super impressive people, all out to make sure that they get some virtual time? Here are some tips for you to try during Aspire+.

#1 Edit Your Name
Not too sure how others would react to the username @tiktoktoktik but we know it definitely doesn’t send out the impression that you’re serious about being taken … well, seriously. Be mindful of the name you’re displaying for the conference chat feature. Use your real name so others can address you professionally, especially the Group CEO who is leading the discussion. You don’t really want her to call you @tiktoktoktik now do you?

#2 Dress To Impress
This goes without saying – first impressions count and you can make that happen by being dressed professionally. Even online. The tip? To dress as you would if you are going for an actual networking event. While you may be tempted to lounge in your PJs all day, make the exception for ASPIRE+ and dress in your finest. Don’t forget pants! Many think that just because the screen shows only their waist up, they can pair their work shirt with shorts. You might forget you’re wearing shorts and stand up to pick up something you drop on the floor for all to see you in your comfiest (read: Oldest) pair of shorts.

#3 Be Prepared to Ask Questions
You want to really, really stand out? Have in hand some very good questions – you will most definitely stand out this way, especially if your question shows that you’ve given this a lot of thought! But don’t hog the e-mic though. Give others a chance to speak; otherwise, you’ll come across as rude and demanding.

#4 Pay Attention
Listen to us – the speaker knows when you are doing something else or has nodded off to somewhere far, far away instead of being right there, right now. So have a good rest the night before so you can show up bright, early and focused. If you find yourself really dozing off, turn off the webcam and take a quick two to three minute break before coming back online again.

#5 Engage
And by this we mean, look interested! When you have an idea or input, raise your hands so the speaker or moderator can see you. Sure, you can just type your input in the chat but if you’re given the opportunity to speak up, by all means do it! But make sure you speak clearly and confidently – that’s the impression you want to send out.

#6 Be Early
Only because chances of you getting noticed is a lot better if you’re one of the first five to log on instead of joining the masses later. You never know, some VIPs might also log on early and this gives you a golden opportunity to have an almost one-to-one chat before everyone joins in.

See you at ASPIRE+. All the best and don’t forget these rules!

Photo by Gabriel Benois on Unsplash

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