7 Things I Wish I Learned Before Graduation

In preparation for my presentation at Virginia Tech’s annual PRSSA Symposium this Saturday I have gathered some tips I hope to pass along to the seniors at VT about to enter the working world. If you have any other words of wisdom, interview tips, or hard lessons learned please let me know.

1) The importance of networking online. Your employers will Google you! It is important to be found online. Use your profiles on Facebook and LinkedIn as an extension of your resume.
2) Ask how long your interviewer has been with the company. The longer a person’s tenure, the better the company is most likely treating them.
3) Know at least 3 or more direct competitors of the organization you interview with, they may ask you as way to gauge how much research and preparation you gave this interview.
4) Research the company’s most recent news. Know what is important to them and what is going on in their industry. Press releases are the BEST way to get breaking news on an organization and their competitors.
5) There is no substitute for internships. Start volunteering, start helping out, make a phone call, see where you can assist and then Make it Happen!
6) You are interviewing the organization as much as they are interviewing you. Make sure the company is a good fit for your personal style and interests.
7) Method Affects Effect. Make it look good. The way you present yourself, or the method, in which you present yourself, will affect the overall outcome. The vocabulary words you choose will affect your message. The shoes you wear will make an impression. Your personal method will affect the outcome.

Please drop a comment if you’ve got anything you’d like to add..

Mike Toner


Mike Toner

Based in Alexandria, Virginia Michael is the Manager of Social Media at Navy Federal Credit Union. By evening, he's a husband, dog owner and runner. Toner writes about social media strategy, tools, training and best practices for social and digital marketing programs.


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