I can’t be the only teacher that loves job fairs! I’ve never gotten a job at a fair, but they have always given me opportunities to get my next position. Think about this; a lot of people hate the job-hunting process. Why? Because a lot of people aren’t confident during their search. If you practice something long enough, you become better. You should have that mindset when searching for a new job. The only way you’ll perform strongly at your interviews is if you practice. Job fairs are the perfect opportunity to get better.
It is an Opportunity to Practice Your Interviewing Skills
How often is it appropriate to talk about yourself for an entire conversation? Lol. Well, guess where you can do it? At a job fair! Most of us enjoy talking about ourselves and duh… that’s what job fairs and interviews are all about, selling yourself. I think it is safe to say that most of the people you talk to aren’t interested in hiring you. So, use this as an opportunity to build your confidence and make yourself more comfortable answering interview questions. Listen to the questions they ask, write them down, and work on answers that will show your strengths. If you need further help preparing for your interview, grab my free Virtual Interview Checklist.
It is an Opportunity to Vet School Districts & Schools
During my last job hunt, I was only interested in two school districts. At the time, both districts were (and still are) the highest paying districts in the Dallas area.
When I met with representatives from my current district, I got a great vibe. The administrators were friendly and interested in getting to know me, I felt super encouraged to keep in touch with them after the fair.
When I visited the other district, I got the complete opposite feeling. I didn’t feel welcomed. I didn’t feel like they were interested in me. I didn’t like their representatives. I knew after that job fair that they were no longer an option for me. So, I stopped pursuing them.
I could only imagine how much time I would have wasted trying to get interviews with that district if I haven’t gone to the fair. Once I found out that the district wasn’t for me, it saved me so much time and energy. I spent the rest of my search focused on the other district. I was even able to narrow down exactly the schools where I wanted to work! Believe it or not, I was hired at one of the schools of my choice. I
f you want to learn how I picked my dream school, Check out my How to Land Your Dream Job Guide. I outline and everything I did in the guide so that you can find the teaching job of your dreams!
Some people expect to walk into a job fair and snag a job on the spot. I would feel leery if a school hired me after speaking with me for 15 minutes now (that’s another story). I think a job fair is a way to build a relationship with administrators. The secret to finding success at a job fair is what you do after the fair. Principals meet with so many people at job fairs, and you’ll need a way to stand out.
If you got a good feeling or had a good conversation with a principal follow up immediately. If they were equally interested, you’ll get an opportunity to meet with them at their school, and this will give you better chance of landing the job.
Don’t dread your next job fair! Use it as an opportunity to practice your interviewing skills! You should leave the fair more confident than when you arrived. Use this experience also to see if you will mesh well with the schools you think will be a good match. On paper, some schools and districts seem like a good fit. When you meet with them, you’ll either change your mind or continue pursuing them. I’ve never been offered a job at a job fair, but I have had additional interviews that led to employment with the district of my choice.