2014-2015 THE HARVARD GUIDE TO YOUR JOB SEARCH PUBLISHED BY THE OFFICE OF CAREER SERVICES AND THE HARVARD CRIMSON
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2014 Harvard Finance Boutique Night Wed, September 3rd The Harvard Faculty Club 20 Quincy Street 6:00pm - 8:00pm ON CAMPUS INTERVIEWS Mon, September 29th The Harvard Faculty Club 20 Quincy Street Apply online via Crimson Careers
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Table of Contents WELCOME TO OCS
THE JOB SEARCH
AN ENTREPRENEURIAL APPROACH....................08
GET INTERVIEW HELP AT OCS..............................36
EXPLORE OCS RESOURCES...................................11
SECOND AND FINAL ROUND INTERVIEWS.........41
RESEARCH EMPLOYERS AND INDUSTRIES ......12
GETTING THE OFFER...............................................42
OFFERS & DECISIONS
QUICK TIPS FOR USING CRIMSON CAREERS ...13
QUICK TIPS FOR THE ENTREPRENEURIAL JOB SEARCH.......................................................................14
EVALUATING THE OPPORTUNITY.........................43
OCS FALL PROGRAMMING.....................................16
MAKING A COMMITMENT......................................44
WHAT IS OCI?.............................................................18 OCI SUMMER INTERNSHIPS..................................19 STUDENTS GOING ABROAD...................................20 USING CRIMSON CAREERS FOR OCI...................20 OCI APPLICATION FAQS: ........................................25 OCI CALENDAR: ........................................................26
RESUMES AND COVER LETTERS
CREATE A STRONG RESUME.................................28 WRITE AN EFFECTIVE COVER LETTER................29 SAMPLE RESUME.....................................................30 COVER LETTER FORMAT .......................................30 SAMPLE COVER LETTER.........................................31 COVER LETTERS AND CRIMSON CAREERS.......33 150 SAMPLE ACTION WORDS...............................33
ONCE YOU MAKE A DECISION...............................43 ON-CAMPUS INTERVIEW OFFERS........................45
LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
PUBLIC SERVICE ......................................................49 EDUCATION ...............................................................51 HEALTH TECH............................................................52 ENTERTAINMENT......................................................54 CONSULTING ............................................................57 START UPS ................................................................58 ADVERTISING.............................................................59 RETAIL MECHANDISING ........................................60 INVESTMENT BANKING .........................................61 CORPORATE STRATEGY..........................................63 TECHNOLOGY............................................................64
Education PreK-12 Expo
Start-Up Career Fair
Education Career Fair
Big Data Crimson Analytics & & Journalism Technology Media Fair Fair
Finance Boutique Night
WELCOME TO OCS On-Campus Interview Program Fair
Consulting Boutique Night
Global Health Fair
Crimson Advertising, Journalism&&Public Marketing, Media FairExpo Relations
Graduate Biotechnology Club Career Fair
OCS CAREER FAIRS & EXPOS 09.05.14
Big Data Advertising, Analytics Marketing,&& Public Technology Fair Relations Expo 11.19.14
Summer Opportunities Fair
Fashion, Media, Marketing Spring Career Conference
Public Interested? Conference
Engineering Boutique Night
Undergraduate Law Meet-Up
Social Impact Expo
Theatre & Entertainment Meet-Up
Volunteer Opportunities in Health Care Fair MIT Energy Showcase
The Harvard Guide to Your Job Search 18TH EDITION PUBLISHERS
Shang Wang ’15 and Deb Carroll
THE HARVARD CRIMSON, INC. Business Manager
Shang Wang ’15 Advertising Sales
Juliet A. Nelson ’16 Alvin K.Leung ’16 Lizbeth Hernandez ‘16 Farhana Nabi ‘16 Dominique M. Sanders ‘17 Design
Lizbeth Hernandez ’16 President
Samuel Y. Weinstock ’14
HARVARD OFFICE OF CAREER SERVICES Deb Carroll Marissa Long ’08
Copyright 2013, The Harvard Crimson, Inc. All rights reserved by The Harvard Crimson, Inc. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the expressed, written permission of The Harvard Crimson, Inc. For advertising information, please call (617) 576-6600. For job search questions not answered, please call OCS at (617) 495-2595.
01 WELCOME TO OCS W
hether you have some specific goals in mind or have no idea what to do after Harvard, the Office of Career Services (OCS) is a valuable resource for any stage of your job, internship, fellowship, or graduate school search process. OCS can help you identify and explore options, build a professional network, focus your efforts, and maintain your motivation – all of which is important in a challenging economy. As you start thinking about which pathways to pursue, remember that there are many road maps and people willing to help you along your way. One piece of advice that has stood the test of time is that “the early bird gets the worm.” Don’t wait until the last minute to begin to explore and plan for your next step. Let OCS help you find the right approach and guide you from start to finish.
Opportunities: Educate yourself about diverse career options. `` September is Senior Month at OCS - don’t miss out on all the programming during September and beyond! `` Select from over 75 diverse panels and workshops offered each semester. `` Join your OCS class listserv to receive relevant updates about events!
Connections: Find people who can help you in your job search. Meet employers, Harvard alumni, and students with similar interests at numerous workshops, panels, and events hosted by OCS. `` Alumni speakers and panels. `` 20+ OCS career fairs and expos already scheduled for this year. `` See the OCS Google Calendars for all the details!
Success: Get personalized advice to help you get where you want to be! `` OCS Drop-In Hours, Monday through Friday, 1-4pm, for resume and cover letter reviews, quick questions, just getting started, or touching base. `` Special “Getting Started” advisers to help you take the first steps. `` Half hour advising appointments covering a diverse range of career areas and career decision-making. `` Complete the Senior Check-In so that we can tailor services to your interests! Be sure to stay connected with OCS through the OCS website, including your OCS Class Listserv and OCS Google Calendars, at www.ocs.fas. harvard.edu. We look forward to working with you this year!
CONNECT WITH OCS @HarvardOCS @HarvardOCS
The Office of Career Services Staff ocsharvard.tumblr.com facebook.com/OCSHarvard pinterest.com/harvardocs www.ocs.fas.harvard.edu students/join-listserv.htm
02 THE JOB SEARCH M
ost students find the job or internship search process both exciting and stressful, since it is a time of exploring options but also a time of narrowing choices and decision-making. At OCS we appreciate this, and we are ready to help you through each step of the way. Before applying for specific opportunities, it is important to do some thinking about what you want to do next.
THE JOB SEARCH
`` Explore options and discover which organizations, graduate schools, industries, and types of employers most closely match your interests, personality, skills, and offer you the best learning opportunities. `` Reflect and think about how you would like to participate in the world of not-for-profit, forprofit, and/or government work, now and in the future. `` Think about other opportunities, such as international experiences, fellowships, or research positions, and determine which path is best for you at this point in time. `` Connect with the Office of Career Services at 54 Dunster Street and let an adviser personally help you get focused and started on your search.
AN ENTREPRENEURIAL APPROACH In this current hiring climate, some of the characteristics of a successful job search are very similar to the components of launching a successful new business or venture. Both require taking initiative and being proactive, finding ways to stand out and differentiate yourself from the pack, being resilient and adaptable if your first plan doesn’t work, and making professional connections that will help you through each step of the process. It is not enough to hit the send button on several applications and then sit back expecting your Harvard credentials to do the work. The job search is a very active process that involves meeting and interacting with many professionals, which is why OCS often refers to the job search as a “contact sport.”
MAKE CONNECTIONS You have to talk to people in order to learn what is out there, to get up to speed on current issues in a particular field, and to determine which options are a good fit for you. “Building a Professional Network” means making contacts with people who can provide you with up-to-date information and help you develop some “gravitational pull” from inside an organization, increasing your chances of being noticed and successful in your search. Especially in a sluggish economy, the connections you make building out your network can be crucial to finding and landing a great job or internship. Over 90% of job seekers land jobs or internships through this process of building professional connections. Take advantage of all the opportunities Harvard offers you, both on and off campus, in person and online, to speak with lots of people about your interests.
Attend Professional Networking Workshops. You are going to be networking throughout your professional career, including each time you want to change jobs, so make sure to learn and practice these skills before you leave campus. Networking workshops are among the “Nuts & Bolts” programming offered at OCS. Check the OCS Google Calendars for more details.
Go to Events with Employers and Alumni. These are opportunities for you to: `` Ask questions `` Meet people face-to-face `` Learn about full-time and summer internship opportunities `` Learn what is a good fit for you and what is not `` Get application and interview tips
you should approach career strategy the same way an entrepreneur approaches starting a business.â€? -LinkedIn Founder Reid Garrett Hoffman
`` Demonstrate your interest, knowledge, and skills `` Get contact information and stay in touch if interested
THE JOB SEARCH
`` Experience the culture of a company or organization
Attend Career Fairs and Expos. Speak with employers about jobs, internships, and career paths. Recent Harvard alums often represent their employer at career fairs, making it even easier for you to connect and ask questions. Collect business cards or contact information and stay in touch. Below are some of the key events already planned on campus for the 2014-2015 academic year. Be sure to check the OCS Google Calendars for any updates and changes.
OCS CAREER FAIRS & EXPOS
Finance Boutique Night
On-Campus Interview Program Fair
Graduate Biotechnology Club Career Fair
Consulting Boutique Night NOVEMBER
Big Data Crimson Analytics & & Journalism Technology Media Fair Fair
Big Data Advertising, Analytics Marketing,&& Public Technology Fair Relations Expo
Crimson Advertising, Journalism&&Public Marketing, Media FairExpo Relations DECEMBER
Education Career Fair
Engineering Boutique Night
Global Health Fair JANUARY
Summer Opportunities Fair
Public Interested? Conference
Start-Up Career Fair
Theatre & Entertainment Meet-Up
Undergraduate Law Meet-Up MARCH
Education PreK-12 Expo
Fashion, Media, Marketing Spring Career Conference APRIL
MIT Energy Showcase
Volunteer Opportunities in Health Care Fair
Social Impact Expo
Attend Career Panels. OCS arranges many panels with diverse employers and organizations where alumni and other professionals talk about careers in areas such as non-profit management, fashion, sports, entertainment, global public health, human rights, international development and more. Most organizations do not hire through the on-campus interview program, so use these opportunities to build your professional network and connections. Remember that speakers are always looking for new people who are passionate about what they do to join their organizations and become the next generation of leaders in their field. See “OCS Fall Programming” in this section for a list of programs currently scheduled for this fall, and check the OCS Google Calendars for additions, updates, and changes.
THE JOB SEARCH
Attend Employer Networking & Information Sessions. Over 100 organizations, mostly large employers who hire a lot of people at one time, come to campus between September and December looking specifically to meet Harvard students and to present information about their organizations. Make sure you check out the OCS Employers on Campus Google Calendar for specific dates and times. You do not need to be registered with the On-Campus Interview Program to attend. Don’t be discouraged if the type of organization you would like to work for does not offer an employer session, as there are many other ways to get in front of potential employers.
Networking doesn’t have to be intimidating! I used to think that networking was akin to taking advantage of people, trying to get as much out of someone that I can. It doesn’t have to be that way. Get to know people who are working in areas that you are or may be interested in, long before they can do anything to help you directly. Just ask for their advice, and tell them what you’re thinking or are concerned about. Networking is getting to know people and building relationships among advisers and others, it’s not about ‘squeezing’ things out of people.” -Harvard alum ‘13
While these sessions can be great learning experiences, they are also a chance for you to stand out from the stack of resumes these organization representatives have in their offices. Take the opportunity to demonstrate your passion for the field as well as your “soft skills,” including how well you interact and communicate with different kinds of people. If an employer sees that you will handle yourself well in a professional social situation, it will help them remember you and pull your resume out from the pile of other candidates! `` Attend Special Employer Programs – Learn directly from experienced professionals how to navigate the hiring process in their fields. `` On-Campus Interview Program Boutique Events – Learn about the opportunities at some of the smaller or niche employers in the On-Campus Interview Program. `` Finance – Wednesday, September 3rd, 6-8pm @ the Harvard Faculty Club `` Consulting – Friday, September 12th, 3-5pm @ the Sheraton Commander Hotel `` Resume Clinics – A number of employers conduct field-specific resume review clinics in areas such as consulting, financial services and tech. See the OCS Employers on Campus Google Calendar for dates and details. `` Interview Workshops – Many employers come to campus to present finance, technical, and case interview workshops. These are excellent learning opportunities for students who think they may be interested in interviewing for these types of positions. `` Employer or Recruiter Office Hours / Coffee Chats – Usually held at OCS, the OCS Interview Facility, or a local cafe, office hours/coffee chats are a great way to get recruiting, application, and interview questions answered while demonstrating your interest and helping you develop connections. Bring your resume and/or cover letter and get employer feedback. See the OCS Employers on Campus Google Calendar for dates and details
Leverage the Harvard Network Remotely: Reach out to Harvard alumni virtually, especially if the organization that interests you is not represented on campus or you were not able to attend one of their events. Many Harvard alumni are willing and happy to speak to current students about their field, career path, and specific opportunities. Check out the Networking section on the OCS website for a guide to
Informational Interviews and utilize online tools such as Crimson Compass and LinkedIn to connect with alumni (see the Resources section of this guide for more information about online networking tools).
Explore OCS Resources Some exclusive to Harvard students, OCS’s online resources provide job and internship listings, networking contacts, and industry information access 24/7. Attend a workshop at OCS to learn more about these databases, or stop by OCS during Drop-Ins to have a member of OCS first-floor team give you a personal demonstration.
`` Harvard Centers and Departments `` Harvard Alumni `` On-Campus Interview Program (OCI) `` Internship Consortia `` UCAN - 21 select colleges and universities from across the country jointly post over 8,000 domestic and international internships each academic year in order to represent a wide diversity of geographic locations, industries, and job functions `` iNet - an elite Ivy+ internship database with over 3,000 internship postings, iNet includes a range of industries, with non-profits, communication/media, marketing, internet, and start-ups as the 5 most-posted industries this past year Includes informative country guides with tips on local professional etiquette, tailoring resumes and curriculum vitae by country/region, and visa information. GoinGlobal also provides resources for international students looking to work in the U.S., including all of the employers who applied for H1-B visas for their employees in the previous year. Often used for career exploration and interview preparation, Vault has over 140 downloadable career guides, employer profiles and rankings, as well as discussion boards, industry blogs and news.
Free, lifetime access to the MyPlan.com interests, skills, and values self-assessment exercises helps many students get started. To take any of the assessments, students simplystudents simply create an account through the OCS website.
THE JOB SEARCH
Search broadly through our job and internship database. Look regularly— listings are added frequently. This past year alone there were over 8,000 jobs and internships posted in Crimson Careers. Keyword searches may lead to better results when searching “non-profit” or “engineering.” Specialized searches also can be selected for jobs and internships posted by:
A professional networking site, LinkedIn provides job listings and opportunities to connect with students, alumni, and employers. Join the official Harvard Alumni Network to connect with thousands of alumni. Utilize the Harvard University page to explore the careers of over 125,000 alumni. Follow the “company page” of organizations that interest you, and search job listings that may not be posted anywhere else. Searchable database of fellow Harvard students who have volunteered to share their summer experiences with you, Peer2Peer is a great way to make a contact in a particular organization of interest to you. Crimson Compass is the official alumni networking database provided by the Harvard Alumni Association (HAA). Start to build your professional network by connecting with alumni who have volunteered to speak with students about careers, pathways and industries. Select multiple career areas and keep searches broad; this resource is for making connections and informational interviews, not for job placement or listings.
LinkedIn is a recruiter’s bread and butter.” -Joshua Scull, Oak Ridge National Laboratories
RESEARCH EMPLOYERS AND INDUSTRIES You may hear that to be successful in the job search and interview process you need to “do your homework.” This means researching the employers and industries that interest you. Background research will help you tailor your resumes and cover letters for greater success, prepare for interview questions, and ensure that you are prepared to evaluate job and internship offers when you get them.
Where to conduct research? `` Employer websites `` Search engines
THE JOB SEARCH
`` Set up “Google Alerts” and/or other notifications to email you when a particular organization or topic is mentioned online
`` Some companies, often start-ups, PR, and social media ventures, often post jobs and internships via Twitter. `` OCS website, including access to: `` Crimson Careers job and internship posting `` Vault industry guides
`` LinkedIn `` Join LinkedIn groups in relevant industries and sectors, browse the group discussion boards to stay current with hot topics `` Follow the “Company Page” of organizations that interest you, they will post relevant articles and updates, and you can see who in your network is connected there `` Twitter `` Follow companies, industry thought leaders, and industry news and have it delivered directly to your Twitter feed.
`` Industry Publications, including: `` The Wall Street Journal `` Bloomberg Business Week `` AdWeek `` Wired `` OCS Reading Room and Library `` Numerous career and industry publications selected by OCS staff `` Hoovers (Hollis) available through the Harvard library system
PROFESSIONALISM INSIDER TIP
ear after year, OCS employers consistently rank employer research as the weakest element among Harvard candidates. For example, do you know the CEO of the company you are interviewing with? Can you talk about a recent article that mentioned the organization? Do your research and separate yourself from the pack!
When going through the job or internship search, it is always important to present yourself as someone ready for employment and the responsibilities that go with it. Interactions with employers, though some more casual than others, should always be professional. Be polite and engaged with everyone you encounter, even people who you don’t necessarily think will be part of the hiring decisions, like receptionists and wait staff at restaurants. Make sure to think beyond just face-to-face events, but consider all the ways you might communicate with an employer. `` Email: Make sure your emails are businesslike with proper grammar and punctuation. A pet-peeve of many recruiters and alumni is when students begin an email with “Hey.” Also, don’t forget to revise your email signature to something appropriate for employer correspondence.
`` Telephone: Employers will try to reach you by phone, so set up your voicemail, and make sure your outgoing voicemail message and ring back tones are straight-forward and professional. Check your voicemail regularly so a recruiter never gets a message that your mailbox is full and cannot leave you a message. Remember to return voice mails with a phone call – take the cue from the employer as to how they want to communicate with you. If you can’t reach the employer by phone, leave a message and then follow up by email.
`` Online: Edit what you have on Facebook and other social networking sites and update your security settings. What would happen if a recruiter Googled you? Also, be proactive about your online presence by setting up a professional LinkedIn account. Some things vary by industry and organization, such as dress code. This is why you should always do research online, make connections with alumni and other professionals in the field, and follow any formal instructions or informal cues given to you by an employer. When in doubt, always err on the formal side until you are sure.
QUICK TIPS FOR USING CRIMSON CAREERS
THE JOB SEARCH
Through the Crimson Careers online system, you have access to jobs and internships posted exclusively to Harvard students, opportunities posted by Harvard Centers and Departments, internships posted by our consortia partners, events and career fairs, as well as appointment scheduling with OCS advisers. Below is a brief overview of how to navigate Crimson Careers.
`` Navigation Bar – The navigation bar is consistent throughout every screen in Crimson Careers. As you get more familiar with it you may find other ways you prefer to get from place to place in the system, but the navigation bar is an easy place to start. `` Home Tab – On the home page of Crimson Careers, you will find shortcuts, announcements, and alerts indicating activity on your account or steps you need to follow, such as signing up for an OCI interview. `` Profile Tab – This basic yet important information is for OCS internal use only and is not visible to employers. It is used for contact information and for scheduling appointments. Keep your phone number and email address up-to-date so that we can contact you in case of a change in schedule, interview cancellation, or a last minute open interview time! Make sure that your class level and graduation date are correct under this tab. `` Please note that you must use your @fas, @college, or @post email address to access the Crimson Careers system. If you are having this email account forward to another account, like gmail, be sure to double-check that you are not missing any important system messages by continuing to check your Harvard account while you are conducting your job search. Email messages, such as appointment and interview reminders, are sent from Crimson Careers on a batch basis and may be filtered as spam during the forwarding process. `` Documents Tab – All application documents can be uploaded or viewed from this tab and may include resumes, cover letters, unofficial transcripts, and writing samples. While customized resumes and documents can also be uploaded directly to specific positions from the job description page, we recommend uploading all documents from this tab so that you can preview the document format. Below is some important information to help you use
the documents tab most efficiently: `` Upload resumes, cover letters, and writing samples from Microsoft Word to better maintain formatting and to reduce the upload time. `` “Unofficial Transcript” means your “Student Record” or “Official Transcript” only, see the OCI section of the OCS website for more details. `` To remove encryption, your Student Record must be printed and then scanned into a PDF. If you do not upload your Student Record this way, employers may receive your application materials as a blank page stating “document could not be included.” `` Always “View” uploaded documents from the documents tab to ensure proper formatting was maintained in the file conversion. `` There is NO LIMIT as to how many documents you can upload.
THE JOB SEARCH `` Jobs & Internships Tab – Crimson Careers allows you to set up your own searches, set favorites, and set up “search agents” to get email updates on new postings. Consider beginning with a broad search on keyword or industry and then progressively narrowing your search from there. `` Applying to Non-OCI Jobs and Internships – Whenever possible, tailor your application materials to the specific job, organization, or industry for which you are applying. Make it Final! Think of your application as if you are sealing it and posting it by mail to the employer. Changes you make to your documents will not change or update a submitted application. To review applications to non-OCI positions, navigate to the “Jobs & Internships” tab, and then to the “Applications” sub-tab. Non-OCI employers will contact you directly by phone or by email if they would like to schedule you for an interview.
QUICK TIPS FOR THE ENTREPRENEURIAL JOB SEARCH As a Harvard student you have many reasons to be confident and optimistic, provided you approach your job search with realistic expectations and are ready to invest both time and effort. Remember that different organizations and industries hire on different time lines. Like an entrepreneur, be prepared to iterate and be adaptable throughout the job search process. `` Cast a wide net. Don’t approach the job search with your heart set on one dream employer, job, or industry. It is important to think about multiple paths you can take in the short term to gain the skills you need to achieve your goals in the long term. It is important to extend your search beyond on-campus interviews, which only represent a small fraction of the opportunities available to Harvard students. If you don’t get an offer from your first choice organization, think about where else you could learn similar expertise or develop other valuable abilities. `` Use all the resources available to you. OCS has expert staff and resources to help you navigate your job search in varying economic climates. Take advantage of resume and interview workshops to put your best foot forward. Attend career fairs and panels to meet face-to-face with potential employers. Meet with an adviser to strategize the best course of action for you and your goals. Use the online and library resources to expand your job
The best advice I could give is to be ready to improvise. The ability to recognize opportunities and move in new—and sometimes unexpected—directions will benefit you no matter your interests or aspirations. A liberal arts education is designed to equip students for just such flexibility and imagination.” -Drew Faust in a Forbes interview, 7/30/12
search. `` Build your professional network. In an uncertain economy, employers are often less able to predict their hiring needs in advance and therefore rely more heavily on â€œjust in timeâ€? hiring. For this reason, it is essential to be proactive and not wait until a job gets posted. Use friends, OCS events, family members, and the Harvard network to meet people in the organizations and industries where you would like to work. Stay in touch so you are at the top of their list when a position becomes available. Furthermore, having a good network is your greatest asset in the future as you try to change jobs, change sectors, get relevant inside information, or advance in your chosen field.
THE JOB SEARCH
`` Stay positive. Although the job search may seem more difficult or take longer than you expected, remember that employers want to hire people who can solve tough problems, overcome obstacles, and stay enthusiastic through challenging times. OCS staff, programs, and resources can help you stay motivated and stay on track. Keep in mind that people hired during a recession often advance more rapidly, as they have had opportunities to take on more responsibility earlier in their careers and have demonstrated success in the face of adversity.
Refer to the next page for a calender of OCS fall programming
OCS Fall Programming Law, Government, Politics, Service `` Applying to Law School 101: Wed., Sept. 3, 4:00– 5:00pm; Thurs., Oct. 2; Tues., Nov. 4, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Conference Room
`` Finding Jobs and Internships in Scientific and Technical Industries: Tues., Sept. 23, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Conference Room
`` How to Find Jobs and Internships in Public Service and Non Profits: Fri., Sept. 26, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Reading Room
`` Graduate School in Engineering, Life, and Physical Sciences: Applying, Surviving, and Thriving: Thurs., Oct. 16, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS
`` Explore Careers in the Legal Profession: Tues., Oct. 7, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Reading Room
`` Technology, Big Data Analytics, Cyber Security
THE JOB SEARCH
`` Explore Careers in Cyber Security: Wed., Oct. 8, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Reading Room
`` Finding Jobs and Internships in Scientific and Technical Industries: Tues., Sept. 23, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Conference Room
`` Explore Careers in Intelligence: Tues., Oct. 14, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS
`` Explore Careers in Cyber Security: Wed., Oct. 8, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Reading Room
`` Explore Careers in Washington: Wed., Oct. 15, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Reading Room
`` Explore Careers in Big Data and Analytics: Fri., Oct. 10, 2:00–3:00pm, SOCH: 59 Shepard Street
`` Explore Careers with Nonprofit Organizations (NPOs) and NGOs: Panel and Mixer: Thurs., Oct. 23, 4:00–5:30pm, OCS Reading Room
International Relations & Development, Human Rights `` Pathways to International Development: Thurs., Sept. 25, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Reading Room `` Explore Graduate School in International Development/Affairs: Tues., Sept. 30, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Conference Room `` Explore Careers Focused on Latin America: Wed., Oct. 1, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Reading Room `` Finding and Funding Internships in Africa: Wed., Nov. 5, 4:30–6:00pm, OCS Conference Room
Global and Public Health `` Explore Careers in Global Health: Thurs., Nov. 6, 3:00–4:00pm, OCS Conference Room `` Healthcare & Life Sciences `` Finding Jobs and Internships in Scientific and Technical Industries: Tues., Sept. 23, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Conference Room `` Explore Careers in the Life Sciences: Wed., Oct. 1, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Conference Room `` Graduate School in Engineering, Life, and Physical Sciences: Applying, Surviving, and Thriving: Thurs., Oct. 16, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS
Engineering & Physical Sciences
Architecture, Urban Development, Design `` How to Find Jobs and Internships in Architecture, Green Construction, and Urban Planning: Mon., Nov. 3, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS
Environment, Energy, Sustainability `` How to Find Jobs and Internships in Environment, Energy, and Sustainability: Wed., Nov. 12, 4:00– 5:00pm, OCS Conference Room
Education, Psychology, Social Services `` Careers in Psychology, Mental Health, and Social Services: Fri., Sept. 19, 1:00–12:00pm, OCS Conference Room `` How to Find Jobs and Internships in Education: Thurs., Oct. 30, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Conference Room
Entertainment, Media, TV, Film, Sports `` Being a Hollywood Agent: Tues., Oct. 21, 4:00– 5:00pm, WEBINAR `` Expert in Residence: Chris Grancio, Head of Basketball Sports Marketing, Adidas: Thurs., Oct. 23, 12:00–5:00pm, OCS `` Expert in Residence: Eddie Dalva, Executive VP, Content and Program Enterprises, Viacom: Mon., Oct. 27, Various Timeslots, OCS
Creative Arts, Film, Music, Theatre `` Behind the Scenes: Working Tech and Production in Theater, Film, Music, and More: Wed., Sept. 17, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Reading Room `` Freelancing: A New Way to Work in Creative, Visual, and Performing Arts, Journalism, and Social Media: `` Mon., Oct. 20, 4:00–5:00pm, The Signet `` Expert in Residence: Eddie Dalva, Executive VP, Content and Program Enterprises, Viacom: Mon., Oct. 27, Various Timeslots, OCS
Arts Management, Museums, Galleries `` How to Land Internships and Jobs in Museums and Arts Organizations: Thurs., Oct. 9, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Reading Room
Journalism, Publishing, Writing
i-Lab: Thurs., Sept. 11, 4:00–5:00pm, Science Center `` What Does It Take to Be a Successful Entrepreneur?: Tues., Sept. 16, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Conference Room `` Social Enterprise Careers: Changing the World One Organization at a Time: Tues., Oct. 7, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Conference Room
Consulting, Business Strategy `` Is Management Consulting Right for Me?: Tues., Sept. 9, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Reading Room
THE JOB SEARCH
`` Expert in Residence: Chris Marinak, Sr. Vice President, League Economics and Strategy, Major League Baseball: Wed., Nov. 12, 12:00–5:00pm, Various Locations
`` Banking and Consulting: Myths vs. Reality: Tues., Nov. 4, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Reading Room
Finance, Hedge Funds, Real Estate, Private Equity, VC `` Finance 2.0: Explore Careers in Hedge Funds, Private Equity, Asset Management, and Venture Capital: Thurs., Sept. 4, 5:30–6:30pm, OCS Conference Room `` Investment Banking 101: Tues., Oct. 21, 4:00– 5:00pm, OCS Conference Room
`` Journalism Across the Spectrum: Thurs., Sept. 18, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Reading Room
Fashion, Retail, Consumer Products, Hospitality `` Get In Style: Explore Careers in Fashion: Wed., Nov. 5, 6:00–7:00pm, OCS Reading Room
Marketing, Public Relations, Advertising `` Explore Careers in Advertising and Media: Thurs., Oct. 16, 6:00–7:00pm, OCS Reading Room `` Advertising and Marketing, Featuring WPP: Wed., Oct. 22, 5:30–7:00pm, OCS Reading Room
Foundations, Fundraising, Corporate Social Responsibility
For the most up-to-date schedule and more information: www.ocs.fas.harvard.edu
`` Pathways to Foundations and Fundraising: Mon., Oct. 6, 4:00–5:00pm, OCS Reading Room
Entrepreneurship, Start-Ups, Social Enterprise `` Innovation at Harvard and Beyond: Intro to the
03 oci 101 WHAT IS OCI?
he On-Campus Interview Program (OCI) brings employers to campus for first round full-time and internship interviews. Approximately 200 employers participate each year. Students must register each academic year to earn “OCI access,” i.e. to be able to apply to on-campus interview opportunities, schedule on-campus interviews, and otherwise participate in OCI. See the OCI website for registration details: http://www.ocs.fas.harvard.edu/students/recruiting/OCR_signup.html The OCI process is highly competitive and only used by certain types of companies. Some students mistakenly think of OCI as the “easy” way to find a job or internship, however, it is important to realize that OCI is often time-intensive and stressful with multiple quick deadlines and demanding interview schedules. The program is one tool among many that students should utilize in their search for jobs and internships.
Important OCI Dates `` First Full-time Application Deadline: Wednesday, September 10th @ 11:59pm in Crimson Careers `` Full-Time Job Interviews: September 18th– October 23rd `` First Summer Internship Application Deadline: Wednesday, January 7th@ 11:59pm in Crimson Careers
`` Summer Internship and Spring Full-Time Job Interviews: January 19th– February 19th
Program Eligibility `` Harvard College students and alumni `` Graduate School of Arts and Sciences students and alumni `` Select Harvard Extension School and MIT Students
Why are there so many banking and consulting firms? Over 25 different industries were represented in last year’s On-Campus Interview Program, including popular opportunities at Abercrombie & Fitch, Amazon, Bloomingdale’s, Facebook, Pepsi and Walt Disney. The Office of Career Services invites all types of organizations to participate in the OCI Program. The only requirements are that participating organizations have paid opportunities and that they abide by the OCI policies and procedures, including Harvard’s non-discrimination policy. That being said, many types of companies and organizations do not hire through such an elaborate process as OCI. Formal programs are very time consuming and expensive for employers. Highly sought after firms in areas such as sports, media, electronic gaming, non-profits, and entertainment are overloaded with applications and have no need to spend resources traveling to college campuses in search of additional candidates. Other types of employers such as start-ups, venture capital, journalism, and biotech firms are looking for applicants to show initiative by finding them. Many companies prefer to make “just in time” hiring decisions closer to the employment start date and cannot predict hiring needs in advance.
If you do not see an employer, organization, or industry of interest to you interviewing on campus, they are most likely still interested in hiring you! Many employers who do not participate in OCI actively recruit Harvard talent by attending a career fair, participating in an OCS career panel, and posting in Crimson Careers. Refer to The Job Search section of this guide for tips on the entrepreneurial approach. Use OCS Drop-In Hours, Monday through Friday, 1 – 4pm to let OCS help you develop an individualized job search plan.
By the Numbers (2013–2014) Number in class
15 / student
20 / student
10 / student
4 / student
Average number of OCI interviews
5 / student
6 / student
2 / student
1 / student
Number (and percentage of applicants) who accepted offers through OCI
Number (and percentage of class) active Number of OCI applications Average number of OCI applications Number of OCI Interviews
Percentage of class who accepted an offer through OCI
Successful candidates are those who: `` Engage in a significant amount of advance preparation `` Conduct industry research and employer outreach `` Take the time to learn which companies interest them and why and can communicate this clearly during an interview `` Build connections with people who work where they are applying
Stay in touch with interviewers, even if you don’t get the job or accept another offer. Next round, it may come in handy.” -Harvard ‘13 alum
`` OCI employers frequently visit campus to help you with this step! Over 80 OCI employers will attend the OCI Fair on Friday, September 5 and nearly 100 OCI employers will host networking and information sessions on campus. `` Use these opportunities to meet face to face with OCI employers, learn more about the companies/industries that interest you and learn how best to prepare for their application process. `` Follow up by sending thank-you emails to everyone you meet. Reference a contact you speak with in the opening section of your cover letters.
OCI Summer Internships Many firms in the On-Campus Interview Program are increasingly turning to their summer interns to fill their full-time openings, especially in the finance and technology sectors. These employers specifically target juniors and some sophomores for internships that allow both the student and the employer to test drive a future fulltime employment relationship. Students applying for these summer positions must meet high standards and
should prepare accordingly. In particular, the Wall Street firms almost exclusively hire from their summer intern classes and do not participate in fall OCI. In many cases competition for summer internships is more intense than for full-time jobs. This is especially true for consulting. Although consulting firms will interview a large number of underclassmen, they will extend fewer summer internship offers. This is often because it is more difficult to find meaningful projects for untrained interns in such a short span of time. Even though there are fewer spots in consulting, summer intern recruiting is an important process that helps you develop connections and become more of a known entity with firms. Consulting companies return to campus and make the majority of their offers through the full-time OCI process in the fall. Other employers in the On-Campus Interview Program choose only to manage their full-time hiring through OCS. These companies often have summer internships but ask that students apply directly to them through their website (e.g. Amazon and Dropbox hire summer interns but only participate in the formal OCI Program for fall, full-time hiring). NOTE to Juniors and Sophomores: Don’t hesitate to attend an Employer Networking & Information Session in the early fall, especially if you do not see one scheduled specifically for summer internships later in the semester. Even if the employer is not specifically looking to hire interns, it is never too early to start gathering information that will help you be a good candidate later on. Many employers only have one session during the year, regardless of how many times they come to interview on campus.
Information for Students Going Abroad Students who study or work abroad are attractive candidates to employers. Going to an international destination shows initiative, independence, curiosity, a willingness to explore and acclimate to a new culture, and other valuable qualities. Employers do not want to miss these candidates, but the logistics of being out of the country do create some obstacles and may require the student to do extra leg work.
The most important things to remember about On-Campus Interviews or your job/internship search while you are studying abroad are:
f you will be abroad in the spring semester, be sure to opt-in to the OCI study-abroad e-mail list for information about employers that have early studyabroad processes in the fall semester.
`` Start early – Make a plan for how you will proceed given your unique circumstances. Remember that some elements of your search can be conducted even before you leave the country. If you will be abroad in the spring semester, make sure to meet employer representatives while they are on campus during the fall semester. If you will be abroad in the fall semester, we recommend proactively reaching out to employer representatives/alumni online. Reach out to the recruiting contact listed in Crimson Careers and ask if it is possible to connect with a representative virtually or find alumni contacts via Crimson Compass and LinkedIn (see Make Connections in The Job Search section of this guide for more information). `` Be flexible – Each employer will have their own way of working with students who are going abroad, so be ready to research and adapt to their processes. This is also why it is important to start early. `` Use all your resources –OCS advisers and staff are available to help you strategize your individual approach. Many of our resources are online and accessible from anywhere in the world where you have internet access. `` Know the logistics – Be sure to attend an Orientation Meeting before you go abroad or plan to take the online tutorial and quiz from overseas (see OCI website). While you may be able to apply to OCI positions through Crimson Careers if you have registered, it is important that you do not sign up for an interview time unless you will be available in person on the interview date. `` Stay connected – You can still belong to OCS listservs, utilize OCS online chat hours, and login to OCS proprietary databases from abroad. Don’t forget to check the student section of the OCS website at www.ocs.fas.harvard.edu/ students both before you go and while you are away to get the most up to date information and information that is more specific to you.
USING CRIMSON CAREERS FOR OCI The On-Campus Interview Program is facilitated using the Crimson Careers online system. Students are able to manage their OCI applications and interviews using the same website where they can make advising appointments, RSVP to OCS events, and search other job and internship opportunities posted by companies, organizations, and Harvard Departments and Centers. Here is a brief overview of how to navigate Crimson Careers specifically for OCI. See “Quick Tips for using Crimson Careers” in The Job Search section of this guide for more information.
Searching Jobs & Internships
Depending on your search criteria, you most likely will see OCI positions side-by-side with other non-OCI opportunities. When trying to meet an OCI deadline, we recommend filtering for OCI positions by“Position Type.”
When reviewing your search results, you will note that most OCI positions are classified as Pre-Select Schedules. This means that the employer is selecting interview candidates prior to the interview date. Apply by clicking on the job description and submitting the requested documents through Crimson Careers. Your application to these postings will show up in the “OCI Applications” section of the “Interviews” tab.“Interviews” tab. Rarely, OCI opportunities may be classified as Open Schedules. This means that the employer is willing to interview students without prior screening. Apply by clicking on the job description and submitting the requested documents through Crimson Careers, and then you will automatically be able to sign up for an interview slot on a first-come, first-served basis. This is also the position type used for educational events like the OCS Mock Interview Marathon. You may view your scheduled interview under the “Scheduled Interviews” section of the “Interviews” tab.
Applying to OCI Positions Students are responsible for providing to individual employers exactly what the employer requests. One of the first things a recruiter asks him or herself is “Did the student give me what I asked for?” Anything listed in the application pop-up screen is required by the employer. If a category of document is not an option in the application window, then the employer did not request it.
`` Example 1: This application requires the student to apply on the company website in addition to Crimson Careers.
`` Example 2: This application requires a resume (with GPA and SAT’s) as well as a cover letter and transcript.
Signing up for OCI Interviews There are two sections of the INTERVIEWS Tab in Crimson Careers that allow you to manage the on-campus interview process:
`` OCI Applications `` OCI Scheduled Interviews In the OCI Applications section, you will see some of the most relevant details about your application, including the status of the employer’s decision about your candidacy. In the accompanying screen shot, the status is highlighted in yellow and can be any of the following five options:
`` Pending: Each application will have a “Pending” status until the employer submits a decision. Employers enter decisions by the “Sign-up Start Date,” and your application status will change to either “Invited,” “Alternate” or “Not Invited.”
`` Invited: If you are invited to an interview with that employer, an e-mail will be sent to you reminding you to sign up
for an interview. You will also see an alert on your Crimson Careers home page and the status of that application in the “OCI Applications” section will be changed to “Invited.”
`` Alternate: If you are accepted as an “Alternate” you will be able to sign up for any remaining interview spots beginning
at 12am, 3 days prior to the employer’s on-campus visit date. Interviews are available to alternates if an invited student declines an interview opportunity or on the chance the employer selects fewer candidates as invited than they have interview slots. Alternates may sign up on a first-come, first-served basis starting on the “Alternate Signup Start Date,” so be sure to check your e-mail and your application status in Crimson Careers to avoid missing an opportunity. The OCI office frequently contacts alternates when interview slots become available by e-mail or phone. Make sure that your cell phone number is accurately listed in Crimson Careers and that your voicemail is set up.
`` Not Invited: You have been declined for an interview. You may want to send the employer contact one final follow-up e-mail or phone call to reiterate your interest and qualifications, but this should be done sparingly and with sensitivity.
`` Sign-up Ended: If your status reads “Sign-up ended,” this DOES NOT MEAN YOU MISSED AN INTERVIEW. The system automatically registers this status once the sign-up period has ended.
When an employer updates your interview status in Crimson Careers, you will be automatically emailed and the Interviews screen will change accordingly.
Typically interviews take place between 9:00am-6:00pm, occasionally starting earlier and ending later to accommodate employer demand and student schedules. Interviews will most often last 30 minutes to an hour, and take place at the OCS Interview Facility located at 1033 Mass Avenue, 5th Floor. Due to high volume, interviews may also take place at the OCS Main Office at 54 Dunster Street or the Harvard Faculty Club. However, there are exceptions to all these criteria. You have a responsibility to attend every interview listed under your “Scheduled OCI Interviews,” to examine your schedule for conflicting interviews, and to check your @college or @fas e-mail account for any updates or changes.
To change your interview time, click on the “Reschedule” link and you will see the interview times that are available. Interviews are available on a first-come, first-served basis, so it is in your best interest to sign-up as soon as possible. If there are no remaining interview slots that work with your schedule and you would like to see if there is anyone willing to switch times slots with you, please contact the OCI Team by emailing email@example.com for the list of other students on your interview schedule.
If you have tried to switch timeslots and there are no times that work with your schedule: You may need to contact the employer and/or recruiter using the contact information on Crimson Careers to ask for their advice. Understand that you will most likely need to share information about your time conflict. Employers have spent a great deal of time and money scheduling their on-campus visits and are under no obligation to reschedule a first round interview. Second round interviews are not a legitimate reason to reschedule the first round interview (See Second Round Interview Policy). Please contact the OCI Office at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any more detailed questions.
Interview Logistics: The date, time, duration, and location of your interview(s) will be emailed to you as a confirmation of your interview. You can also find this information from your Crimson Careers Interviews tab under “Scheduled OCI Interviews.”
Cancellation Policy Please check your schedule carefully to avoid conflicts. If you need to change your interview time or cancel an interview, you may do so using Crimson Careers as long as it is prior to 12:00am two calendar days before your interview date. If you must cancel your interview after that time, whether due to illness or an emergency, please contact the On-Campus Interview Office immediately so an alternate can have the opportunity to interview. Cancelling an interview with less than two days’ notice for a non-health related reason may result in restricted access to the On-Campus Interview Program. Students are not allowed to cancel a first round interview for a second or final round interview. See the Second Round Interview Policy for more details.
You may freely cancel an interview using Crimson Careers
Anytime prior to 12am, 2 days before your interview date
You must contact the OCI Office immediately
Anytime after 12am, 2 days before your interview date
No Show Policy Not showing up for an interview is extremely disrespectful of an employer’s time, denies other Harvard candidates the opportunity to interview, and jeopardizes our positive relationship with recruiters. We take this offense very seriously, and will put a hold on your Crimson Careers account and prohibit you from applying to or signing up for any further on-
campus interviews until you meet with the Director of the On-Campus Interview Program. A letter of explanation and apology to the recruiter involved must be written before reinstatement in the program. Failure to comply with the No Show Policy may result in your removal from the On-Campus Interview Program. In case of an emergency, explain your situation to someone in the OCI Office as soon as possible. Second Round Interview Policy Employers and students must both follow the guidelines listed below when arranging second round interviews. Students are not permitted to cancel a first round interview to attend a second round. Employers are not obligated to reschedule first round interview dates. First rounds are scheduled months in advanced and listed on the position descriptions from the time of application. However, employers are required to give students an alternate interview date if students have a conflict with their second-round interview date.
Second Round Interview Policy
2nd Round Policy
NO 2nd Rounds can be conducted outside the Cambridge Area
September 18 - September 26
Employers MUST give students at least 72-hour notice to leave the Cambridge Area
After Friday, September 26
NO 2nd Rounds can be conducted outside the Cambridge Area
January 19 - January 29
Employers MUST give students at least 72-hour notice to leave the Cambridge Area
After Thursday, January 29
If you are having any problems with employers not abiding by these dates, please contact the On-Campus Interview Office at 617-495-2598.
OCI Application FAQs: OCI 101
`` This employer does not indicate that they want a cover letter, should I attach one anyway? For OCI opportunities each employer has individual specifications and needs, so demonstrate your ability to pay attention to details and follow instructions by providing exactly the documents requested, no more and no less.
`` Can I send one general cover letter for all my applications? No! You may have filled out a common application for
college, but your job applications should be tailored to the needs and specifications indicated in the job description. Remember, the job or internship search is not a numbers game; it is about finding and demonstrating “fit.”
`` Can employers see the saved document names? Yes! Be careful to name your documents carefully. For example, you do not want to send a document called “Consulting Letter” to a non-profit organization!
`` How do I attach my GPA or SAT scores? If an employer requests GPA and/or SAT scores, simply include them in your resume. A separate document is not necessary. Note: Employers may wish to check the accuracy of these figures before formally hiring you by requesting an official transcript and/or reports from the relevant testing service.
`` Do I need an official copy of my transcript? No! You may use your “Unofficial Transcript” in lieu of your official
transcript. See the OCI section of the OCS website for specific information about scanning and uploading your transcript. Note: you are on your honor to supply accurate transcript information to employers and must use your official transcript or Student Record only. Misrepresenting your Harvard transcript is an Ad Board offense.
`` Why is the employer asking me to apply on their website in addition to Crimson Careers? Some employers,
whether for legal or tracking purposes, require students to also complete applications through the organization’s website. If an online application is required, the employer’s web address will be given, and you must complete BOTH the online application at the company website and the Crimson Careers application to be considered for an on-campus interview. Be sure to check the entire job posting carefully to see if an employer requires an additional application on their website. Note: if an employer is asking you ALSO to apply through their own organizational website, they may ask you to submit a cover letter (or answer application questions) through their site even if they do not ask for a cover letter via Crimson Careers.
Remember, the On-Campus Interview Program is highly competitive- take advantage of all of the resources and advice outlined in this Guide for meeting people, resume/cover letters, and interviews.
Undergraduate, MA/MS and PhD On-Campus Interview Program (OCI)
Academic & OCI Calendar, 2014–2015 Sept. 2 (tu) & Sept. 3 (w) Sept. 3 (w) Sept. 5 (f) Sept. 2 (tu) – Oct. 2 (th) Sept. 10 (w) Sept. 12 (f)
Senior Job Search & OCI Orientation Finance Boutique Night On–Campus Interview Program (OCI) Fair Fall Networking & Information Sessions First Fall OCI Deadline, Full–Time only Consulting Boutique Night
Sept. 16 (tu) & Sept. 17 (w)
Mock Interview Marathon, Full–Time
Sept. 18 (th) – Oct. 23 (th)
Fall On–Campus Interviews, Full–Time only
Sept. 18 (th) – Sep. 26 (f)
No Off–Campus Second Round Interviews
Oct. 22 (w) – Nov. 20 (th)
Intern Networking & Information Sessions
Dec. 5 (f)
Summer Opportunities Fair
Dec. 3 (w) – Dec. 10 (w)
Fall Reading Period
Dec. 11 (th) – Dec. 19 (f)
Dec 20 (sa) – Jan 25 (su) Jan. 6 (tu) & Jan. 13 (tu) Jan. 7 (w)
Winter Recess Resume & Cover Letter Reviewathon First Spring OCI Deadline, Intern & Full–Time
Dec. 9 (tu) & Jan. 17 (sa)
Mock Interview Marathon, Intern
Jan. 19 (m) – Feb. 19 (th)
Spring On–Campus Interviews, Intern & Full–Time
Jan. 19 (m) – Jan. 29 (th)
No Off–Campus Second Round Interviews
Jan. 26 (m) Mar. 14 (sa) – Mar. 22 (su)
First Day of Spring Classes Spring Break
Apr. 30 (th) – May 7 (th)
Spring Reading Period
May 8 (f) – May 16 (sa)
May 28 (th)
Commencement *Absolutely NO recruiting events, i.e. interviews or meetings, are to take place during Harvard’s Exam Periods.
Offer Decision Deadlines Oct. 30 (th) Dec. 4 (th) or 3 weeks from date of written offer, whichever is LATER Feb. 20 (f) Feb. 20 (f) or 3 weeks from date of written offer, whichever is LATER
Job Offers Resulting from a Previous OCI Summer Internship Job Offers Resulting from FALL OCI
Summer Intern Offers Resulting from a Previous OCI Summer Internship Job/ Summer Intern Offers Resulting from SPRING OCI
Undergraduate, MA/MS and PhD On-Campus Interview Program (OCI)
ON-CAMPUS INTERVIEW DATES AND DEADLINES 2014-2015 FALL 2014 Employer Interview Date
Student Application Deadline
Employer Preselect Deadline
Sept. 18 (th) – Sept. 19 (f)
Sept. 10 (w) @ 11:59pm
Sept. 12 (f)
Sept. 22 (m) – Sept. 26* (f)
Sept. 10 (w) @ 11:59pm
Sept. 16 (tu)
Sept. 29 (m) – Oct. 2 (th)
Sept. 17 (w) @ 11:59pm
Sept. 23 (tu)
Oct. 6 (m) – Oct. 9 (th)
Sept. 24 (w) @ 11:59pm
Sept. 30 (tu)
Oct. 14 (tu) – Oct. 16 (th)
Oct. 1 (w) @ 11:59pm
Oct. 7 (tu)
Oct. 20 (m) – Oct. 23 (th)
Oct. 8 (w) @ 11:59pm
Oct. 14 (tu)
*No interviews scheduled on Sept. 25 (th)
SPRING 2015 Employer Interview Date
Student Application Deadline
Employer Preselect Deadline
Jan. 19 (m) – Jan. 23 (f)
Jan. 7 (w) @ 11:59pm
Jan. 13 (tu)
Jan. 27 (tu) – Jan. 29* (th)
Jan. 14 (w) @ 11:59pm
Jan. 20 (tu)
Feb. 2 (m) – Feb. 5 (th)
Jan. 21 (w) @ 11:59pm
Jan. 27 (tu)
Feb. 9 (m) – Feb. 12 (th)
Jan. 28 (w) @ 11:59pm
Feb. 3 (tu)
Feb. 17 (tu) – Feb. 19 (th)
Feb. 4 (w) @ 11:59pm
Feb. 10 (tu)
*No interviews scheduled on Jan. 26 (m)
Interview Schedule Notes 1. All students must register to participate in the On-Campus Interview Program (OCI). 2. Student Application Deadline: Students submit all application-related materials via the Crimson Careers OCI system each Wednesday night, two weeks prior to the Employer Interview 3. Employer Preselect Deadline: Invited, alternate and not invited decisions are typically entered by 6pm on this date in Crimson Careers. Check your “interviews” tab in Crimson Careers to view your status. 4. Pre-select (Invited) Sign-up Start Date is 12:00am the day after the Employer Preselect. 5. Schedule Types: Interview schedules may be one of two options listed below. a) Preselect - Alternate Schedules: Alternates will be able to select any remaining interview time slots at 12:00am three days before the interview date.
b) Open Schedules: Interviews are scheduled entirely on a first-come, first-served basis.
6. Interview Changes: You may change your interview time in Crimson Careers if there are open interview times available up until 12am two calendar days prior to the interview date. If you need to switch an interview time and there are no open times available, please email ocsrec@fas. harvard.edu to request an interview switch with another student. 7. Interview Cancellations: You may cancel an interview up to 12am two calendar days prior to the interview date through Crimson Careers. Late cancellations are a violation of the On-Campus Interview Program Policies. Students may not cancel a first-round interview to attend a second-round interview.
Harvard University FAS - Office of Career Services On-Campus Interview Office 617-495-2598 email@example.com www.ocs.fas.harvard.edu 54 Dunster Street, Cambridge, MA 02138 617.495.7784
04 RESUMES AND COVER LETTERS CREATE A STRONG RESUME A resume should be a brief, informative summary of your abilities, education, and experience. It should highlight your strongest assets and skills, and differentiate you from other candidates seeking similar positions. Although it alone will not get you a job or internship, a good resume is an important element towards obtaining an interview. Tailor your resume to the type of position you are seeking. This does not mean that all of your work history must relate directly, but your resume should reflect the kind of skills the employer would value. Find additional guidance on resumes and cover letters, as well as resume samples, on the OCS website or on the first floor of OCS.
Resume Language Should Be: `` Specific rather than general
`` Spelling and grammar errors
`` Active rather than passive
`` Missing e-mail and phone information
`` Written to express not impress
`` Using passive language instead of “action” words
`` Articulate rather than “flowery” `` Fact-based (quantify and qualify) `` Written for people who scan quickly
`` Not well organized, concise, or easy to skim `` Too long (keep to a single page for most)
RESUMES & COVER LETTERS
`` Be consistent in format and content
`` Use personal pronouns (such as I)
`` Make it easy to read and follow
`` Use spacing, underlining, italics, bold, and capitalization for emphasis
`` Use a narrative style
`` List headings (such as Relevant Experience) in order of importance
`` Use slang or colloquialisms
`` Within headings, list information in reverse chronological order (most recent first) `` Avoid information gaps such as a missing summer `` Be sure that your formatting translates properly if converted to a PDF
Top 5 Resume Mistakes:
`` Number or letter categories `` Include a picture `` Include age or sex `` List references on resume
Plan to work internationally? Resume guidelines can vary from country to country. Check out Going Global at www.ocs.fas.harvard.edu.
Get Resume and Cover Letter Help at OCS `` Resume and Cover Letter Workshops. In addition to in-person workshops throughout each semester
(check the OCS Google Calendars), you can also learn the nuts and bolts of resume writing from the OCS Online Workshop: “How to Write a Resume” on the OCS website.
`` OCS Drop-Ins. Monday through Friday, 1–4pm, come by and sign up for a ten minute session. Have someone review your resume or cover letter, get any career question answered, or get help getting started.
`` Extended Drop-Ins for SENIORS. In addition to the regular OCS Drop-Ins, OCS advisers will review resumes and cover letters from 10am-12pm every Monday through Friday until the first OCI deadline, Wednesday, September 10th.
`` Industry-Specific Resume Review Clinics. Led by employers in areas such as consulting and financial services; listed on the On-Campus Interview Program Google Calendar.
WRITE AN EFFECTIVE COVER LETTER A cover letter is an important part of the application process. It is an opportunity to make a concise argument as to why you are a great fit for the particular position and how you can contribute to the organization. Your cover letter should demonstrate that you have thoroughly read the job description and the employer’s website while highlighting your skills and experiences that are most applicable to the job or industry. It is not a narrative version of your resume, but instead a means of connecting your resume to the specific needs of the position and organization. While many sections and ideas in your cover letter can be reused for multiple positions, even in multiple industries, avoid using a generic cover letter. You may have filled out a common application for colleges, but for job applications your materials should always be as tailored as possible to the needs and specifications indicated in the employer’s job description. Some general rules about letters include: `` Address your letters to a specific person if you can. `` Tailor your letters to specific sectors or organizations by doing research before writing your letters. `` Keep letters concise and factual, no more than a single page. Avoid flowery language.
RESUMES & COVER LETTERS
`` Give examples that support your skills and qualifications. `` Put yourself in the reader’s shoes. What can you say that will convince the reader that you are ready and able to do the job? `` Don’t overuse the pronoun “I”. `` Remember that this is a marketing tool. Use lots of action words. `` Have at least one other person proofread your letter. `` If converting to a PDF, check that your formatting translated correctly. `` Reference skills or experiences from the job description and draw connections to your credentials. `` Make sure your resume and cover letter are prepared with the same font type and size. You can find additional guidance on cover letters, as well as letter samples on the OCS website or on the first floor of OCS.
sample resume Always use your @fas or @college e-mail account and check it frequently, even ifyou have enabled forwarding.
433 Mather Mail Center Harvard College Cambridge, MA 02138-6175
Roberta Josephina Maddox firstname.lastname@example.org (123) 456-7890
Education HARVARD UNIVERSITY A.B. Honors degree in History. GPA 3.73. Coursework in International Political Economics and the European Community. Commit 25 hours per week to the Harvard Varsity Field Hockey Program.
If an employer asks for your SAT scores or GPA, you can include them in your education section
UNIVERSITY OF LONDON Study abroad coursework in Investment Analysis and Financial Accounting. IRVINE HIGH SCHOOL Graduated with high honors. SAT I: M:780 V:760. National Honor Society. Member of Varsity Field Hockey Team.
17 Rodeo Road Irvine, CA 92720
Cambridge, MA May 2014
London, UK Fall 2012 Irvine, CA June 2010
Use different verbs
Note that relevant interests and skills can be demonstrated through campus and volunteer activities as well as through previous employment.
RESUMES & COVER LETTERS
Watch out for typos!
Be consistent presenting data. Use either numerals or words but not both.
PEPSI-COLA NORTH AMERICA BEVERAGES New York, NY Marketing Analyst Intern Summer 2013 Examined profitability of foreign market for new fruit drink using analysis of comparable local brands. Managed focus groups and consumer surveys gathering >500 data points. Created ideas for niche marketing campaigns including use of social networks and viral marketing. Presented findings to senior managers using quantitative analysis and creative visuals in a combined PowerPoint presentation. THOMAS WILCK ASSOCIATES Newport Beach, CA Assistant Account Executive Summer 2012 Researched and assembled requests for proposals for medium-sized public relations and communications firm. Actively participated in staff meetings and brainstorming sessions. Generated correspondence with top executive officers. TECH HILLS Laguna Hills, CA Technology Intern Summer 2011 Implemented new web site, including backend database storage system and dynamic web pages. Leadership Experience HARVARD UNDERGRADUATE WOMEN IN BUSINESS (WIB) Executive Committee Member Spring 2011â€“Present Organized marketing and advertising campaign to increase membership. Coordinated business conference and networking reception for 50 business professionals and 500 students. HARVARD COLLEGE MARATHON CHALLENGE Training Program Director Spring 2011 Developled training program for 25 charity runners. Raised over $25,000 to support Phillips Brooks House Association and The Cambridge Food Project. Skills & Interests Computer: Microsoft Excel, Power Point, and Access, Stata, SQL, Java and HTML. Language: Fluent French and Conversational Spanish. Traveled extensively in Europe. Interests: Snowboarding, cake decorating, and foreign films.
LETTER FORMATCover Letter rite COVER an Effective
Your lettersample is a writing andthe a part of the screening By putting your foot best foot forward, can increaseyour ur cover letter is acover writing and sample a part of screening process.process. By putting your best forward, youyou can increase your chances of being interviewed. A good way to create a response-producing cover letter is to highlight your skills or ances of being interviewed. A good way to create a response-producing cover letter is to highlight your skills or experiences experiences that are most applicable to the job or industry and to tailor the letter to the specific organization you are at are most applicable to the job or industry and to tailor the letter to the specific organization you are applying to. applying to.
Your Street Address City, State, Zip Code Date of Letter Use complete Contact Name title and address. Contact Title
Company Name Street Address City, State, Zip Code
Address to a Dear _________: particular person if possible and remember to use Opening paragraph: Clearly state why you are writing, name the position or type of work you’re exploring and, where applicable, how a colon.
you heard about the person or organization.
Middle paragraph(s): Explain why you are interested in this employer and your reasons for desiring this type of work. If you’ve had relevant school or work experience, be sure to point it out with one or two key examples; but do not reiterate your entire resume. Emphasize skills or abilities that relate to the job. Be sure to do this in a confident manner and remember that the reader will view your letter as an example of your writing skills.
Ask for a meeting Closing paragraph: Reiterate your interest in the position, and and remember to your enthusiasm for using your skills to contribute to the work of the organization. Thank the reader for his/her consideration of follow up. Always sign letters.
your application, and end by stating that you look forward to the opportunity to further discuss the position. Sincerely, Your name typed
e general rules about letters:
ddress your letters to a specific person if you can. ilor your letters to specific situations or organizations by
• Remember that this is a marketing tool. Use lots of action 31 words.
RESUMES & COVER LETTERS
Make the addressee want to read your resume. Be brief, but specific.
Sample Cover Letter sample COVER LETTER
September 20, 2014 Ms. Ellie Wells Senior Manager Wallaby Yogurt Company 110 Mezzetta Court American Canyon, CA 94503 Dear Ms. Wells: I am a senior at Harvard University and am writing to apply for the Manager in Training opportunity at the Wallaby Yogurt Company posted on Harvard’s Crimson Careers database. I am very interested in the field of marketing and would welcome the opportunity to contribute my research and writing skills and experience to your growing business. I am excited about Wallaby’s commitment to organic, all-natural ingredients in its products. As a varsity field hockey player, I am very aware of the importance of healthy food as the foundation for a healthy life. Your emphasis on “learning by doing and leading by serving” is also consistent with the training I received as an athlete. Whether on the field learning new drills in the worst weather conditions or patiently working with a new team member, I am most fulfilled when contributing to the team effort. In addition to my concentration in History, I have completed coursework in Economics. My academic work has strengthened my research and writing skills as well as my understanding of the economics of business growth and development. Working with Harvard Undergraduate Women in Business (WIB) over the last two years gave me the experience and confidence to work in a dynamic, fast-paced organization where learning quickly and pitching in are instrumental to success. As a member of the Executive Committee, for example, I managed campus advertising campaigns that increased overall membership and attracted more than 500 students from 12 different schools to our annual Intercollegiate Fall Conference. Thank you for your consideration. I very much look forward to the opportunity to speak with you in person about my interest in this position.
RESUMES & COVER LETTERS
Sincerely, Ima Student
everage the connections you have been developing! Reference anyone you know or have met at the organization in the opening paragraph of your cover letter. For example, “After speaking with Jacklyn Nickel at Microsoft’s campus presentation, I know my analytical and communication skills will be a good fit for the Marketing Analyst role.” You do not need to know the contact extensively, but be genuine in how you refer to him or her.
COVER LETTERS AND CRIMSON CAREERS Below are some of the frequently asked question regarding cover letters and the Crimson Careers online system.
`` How do I know if a cover letter is required on Crimson Careers? Application requirements are listed once you click
the “Apply” button for a specific job or internship in Crimson Careers. You need to upload a resume for the system to know that you are eligible to apply and to reveal the application requirements, so you might want to upload a blank document as a resume to get started.
`` If a cover letter is not required, should I submit one anyway? For OCI positions, no. The employers are very specific about what they want and are looking for candidates to follow instructions. For non-OCI positions, you should also generally follow instructions, but as long as it is not specifically prohibited, a thoughtful, tailored cover letter will add value to your candidacy.
`` Whom do I address my cover letter to? Unless there is a separate contact listed somewhere in the body of the
position description, you should use the contact information posted on Crimson Careers. You can find the contact’s name on the right-hand side of the position description below the application requirements. If you do not find a contact name, “To Whom It May Concern” is sufficient.
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Counseled Created Defined Delivered Derived Demonstrated Designed Determined Developed Devised Directed Discovered Earned Edited Enhanced Established Evaluated Examined Executed Expanded Expedited Fabricated Facilitated Followed Formed Formulated Founded Generated Governed Guided Headed Identified
Impacted Implemented Improved Increased Initiated Inspected Instituted Instructed Interviewed Interpreted Introduced Invented Launched Lectured Led Liaised Maintained Managed Marketed Mastered Maximized Mediated Minimized Modeled Monitored Motivated Negotiated Operated Organized Originated Participated Performed
Persuaded Planned Predicted Prepared Presented Prioritized Processed Programmed Promoted Proposed Proved Provided Publicized Published Purchased Recommended Redesigned Reduced Regulated Renegotiated Reorganized Reported Represented Researched Resolved Reviewed Revised Rewrote Scheduled Selected Served Shaped
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RESUMES & COVER LETTERS
150 sample action words
05 INTERVIEWS E
mployers often tell OCS that most Harvard students are capable of doing the job for which they are hiring. What they are looking for are the candidates who want to do the job for their particular organization. That’s organization. That’s why some of the most common interview questions are why do you want to work here? And why are you interested in this position? To answer these questions, you need to be prepared to do more than communicate your achievements or describe your skills. You need to be able to relate your skills and experience to the specific demands of the position, demonstrate that you understand the work of the organization/employer, and convey your sincere interest and enthusiasm for the opportunity. In other words, it is your responsibility to help the interviewer answer their ultimate question, Why should we hire you? Interviewers are trying to assess: `` Your “fit” with the employer or organization `` How well you have considered your reasons for applying `` Whether you understand the requirements of the job `` How your skills and experiences meet those requirements `` How clearly you can communicate your potential contribution to the organization `` Your “soft skills,” such as communication skills, professionalism, focus, maturity, and work ethic
INTERVIEW TIPS Listed below are some suggestions for improving your interviewing skills.
`` Research the employer, field, and position—Before the interview, read the employer’s website as
well as any print material that you may have picked up at a career fair or other hiring events. Google search the organization to get information from other sources, and consider following them on LinkedIn, Twitter and other social media. Be sure to stay current on industry news by reading daily news publications and associated periodicals. Utilize Harvard online subscriptions such as Vault (available online through the OCS website) and Hoovers (available online through Hollis) for additional industry and organization information. Whenever possible, attend the employer’s Networking & Information Session or speak with someone who works at the organization to increase your visibility in the organization and to gather additional first-hand information.
`` Know your resume—Be prepared to discuss everything on your resume. Remember that your
resume is the only information most interviewers will have about you. Expect questions about your choice of activities, concentration, and thesis if you have included a reference to it. Employers and organizations are interested in knowing how you’ve chosen to spend your time and energy, and why. Help your interviewer get to know you and differentiate you from other students. Don’t be terse when answering “what and why” questions, but don’t ramble, either.
`` Expand on your experience and skills, but whenever you can, focus your responses on how these relate to the job for which you are interviewing.
`` Practice Interviewing—The old saying “practice makes perfect” certainly applies to the interview process. Practice doesn’t mean memorizing questions and answers, but instead that you are practicing making eye-contact, clarifying your explanations, understanding the reasoning behind certain questions, and connecting your own experience to them. You can practice with roommates,
friends, or house tutors. Use OCS online resources, such as Interview Stream, to record and review your responses to common interview questions. The more experience you have articulating your thoughts and highlighting your skills, the more effective and polished your presentation will be.
`` Prepare some questions to ask an employer—Thoughtful questions will help you underscore your
interest in the job and demonstrate that you have done your own research regarding the available position. Make sure you know the next step in the process before you leave. Ask, “When might I expect to hear from you?” And, if applicable, indicate your continued interest in the position.
`` Dress appropriately—A well-groomed, professional appearance is essential to making your best possible
impression. Attend employer Networking & Information Sessions to pick up cues on how to dress for particular industries. Generally, both men and women should plan to wear conservative attire in a dark color. In some creative, technical, or non-profit fields you may have more leeway in terms of formal vs. casual dress, but it is always safe to err on the formal side.
• dark suit with a light shirt • conservative tie • dark/well-polished shoes
• dark suit or tailored dress • simple jewelry • dark/well-polished shoes
• khakis or dress pants • button-down long-sleeve shirt • have a blazer and tie handy
• skirts or dress pants • sweater sets or blouses • have a blazer handy
`` Have a good attitude—Project enthusiasm, confidence, and a positive attitude! You must convey the
message that you are the best candidate for the position you are interviewing for, and that this is the employer you want to work for. A job interview is not the place to be “laid-back;” it is up to you to “sell” yourself for the job. You must market your skills and experience to fit the job requirements, which you know from careful and extensive research of the employer. Be professional, polished, and confident.
Interviewing Nuts & Bolts Tips: `` Map the location of the interview in advance
`` Smile and shake hands
`` Arrive 10-15 minutes early
`` Make eye contact
`` Bring extra copies of your resume and paper to write on
`` After the interview, send a thank you note or e-mail
`` Silence your cell phone
Phone and Video Interviews
heck out the new OCS Pinterest boards for some visual examples, ideas, and articles about professional attire.
Employers increasingly opt to use phone and video interviews more comprehensively, perhaps even asking case questions and technical questions to assess your ability to do the job. In light of this, we encourage you to prepare for phone and video interviews as you would for any interview.
During a phone interview, you are not able to see the interviewer’s reactions and adjust accordingly. There is a certain amount of energy that is shared between interviewer and interviewee that can be lost in a phone interview. Make sure you compensate for this by being prepared, focused, and able to communicate clearly. A few tips include:
`` Enunciate clearly and do not speak too quickly. `` If possible, use a land line instead of a cell phone to avoid static, noise, and losing signal.
`` Plan the time and place of your phone interview so that you have privacy, quiet, and a good connection. You may be able to schedule a room and phone at OCS if the interview takes place during regular business hours, Monday through Friday, 9am-5pm, by calling 617-495-2595 option 0.
`` Dress as you would for a real interview. Dressing the part will help you focus on the importance and purpose of the conversation.
`` Have clear and organized notes in front of you as reminders of questions to ask, background information about the employer, and perhaps even strategies for answering tough questions.
Skype, Facetime, Google Hangouts, and other video conferencing technologies are most often used by employers on the West Coast or overseas. In addition, these technologies have made it easier for employers to interview students when they are studying abroad or otherwise off campus. Again, we encourage you to prepare for a video interview as thoroughly as you would for any interview. These are some additional things to keep in mind:
`` Get familiar with the technology. Ask what product or service will be used and try to practice with your friends and family if you can. This will make you more comfortable in the interview, allowing you to focus on the conversation.
`` Formal video conferencing tools can be expensive and are often paid for by the employer. In these cases, whether you use equipment at Kinko’s or at Harvard, you will most likely still have a “trial run” where you can test the technology.
`` Remember that the interviewer will be able to see you AND the things that surround you. Items in the background
can reflect on you as a candidate. Consider removing things from the background or find an alternative location for your interview.
`` Maintain eye contact. Many technologies allow you to view yourself simultaneously, and it is tempting to monitor yourself rather than stay focused on the interviewer.
`` As with an in person interview, dress appropriately for the position and/or organization. `` As with a phone interview, make sure that you have privacy, quiet, and a good connection.
Get Interview Help at OCS OCS offers a number of opportunities to learn more about interviewing and to practice your skills. Refer to the calendar section of the OCS website for dates and times.
`` Ace Your Interview: Strategies for Success: `` Wednesday, September 17th, 5pm @ OCS `` Tuesday, September 30th, 4pm @ OCS
`` Case Interview Workshop with Case in Point author Marc Cosentino: Tuesday, September 16th, 8:00pm @ Science Center
`` Mock Interview Marathons – Schedule a mock interview with a volunteer employer or graduate student who has
experience in your preferred industry. You must be registered with the On-Campus Interview Program and sign-up through Crimson Careers in order to participate. `` FALL (Seniors): Tuesday, September 16th and Wednesday, September 17th `` WINTER (Juniors): Tuesday, December 9th and Saturday, January 17th
`` General Mock Interviews – After the Mock Marathon, you may schedule a half hour appointment with an OCS
adviser through Crimson Careers. We also recommend that you take advantage of the resources available in the houses through your house business and/or pre-career tutors.
`` OCS is pleased to offer you Interview Stream, the online practice interview system. Using a web cam, you will be able to record a
practice interview and have the option to seek feedback from mentors, professors, OCS advisers, etc. by sharing your interview via e-mail or unique URL. Access Interview Stream from the Crimson Careers home page.
`` OCS offers free online access to CQI Interactive, the online
version of Marc Cosentino’s widely-know Case-in-Point book on case interview preparation. Access CQI Interactive from the OCS website (PIN protected).
`` Industry Specific Interview Workshops – Led by employers in areas such as consulting, financial services, and technology. See the OCS Google Calendars for dates and times.
`` OCS Publications – Available at OCS and on the OCS website. `` OCS Resource Library – Includes online texts by Vault, titles like Case in Point by Marc Cosentino and Investment Banking: Valuation, Leveraged Buyouts, and Mergers and Acquisitions by Joshua Rosenbaum ‘94.
INTERVIEW TYPES Behavioral and “Fit” Interviews At some point in the interview process, the majority of employers use what is called a “Behavioral Interview” to assess a candidate’s skills and fit with their organization. The principle behind this type of interview is that past behavior will predict future behavior. In most cases, the employer has predetermined a specific set of characteristics, often referred to as “competencies,” that are required to be successful in the available position. Some examples of competencies include problem-solving, teamwork, communication, writing skills, and leadership. The employer then designs open-ended questions that ask you to refer back to a particular situation and describe how you responded. For example, an interviewer may request, “Tell me about a time when you were on a team that was not working well together.” The expectation then is that you cite a specific situation from your own experience. Unless the interviewer indicates otherwise, the example you describe can come from your work, school, activity, or volunteer experience. It is important that you have something specific to say and that you can describe your own role and what you learned from the particular situation. Be aware that the interviewer is expecting to ask you multiple questions in a thirty minute interview, so be as concise as possible while getting your point across. This type of interview is a great way for you to tell the story behind your resume. Rather than merely presenting a list of your achievements, you have the opportunity to elaborate on some accomplishments that you may be particularly proud of. But like a good story, it is best to keep a few guidelines in mind:
`` Show, don’t tell—use a specific example and relevant details `` Stay on topic—remember the question you are trying to answer; don’t get sidetracked `` Have a conclusion—be sure to include the outcome or what you learned from the situation
`` Make it resonate—touch upon why your behavior or response would be useful to the employer or in the position
`` Show passion for the mission—in non-profits, sports, entertainment, bio-
tech, start-ups and other areas, a core competency may include a passion for the goals of the organization
Below you will find several competency areas, each with a subset of skills and attributes listed beneath it. These are qualities that employers seek in candidates and that you will want to continue to develop across your career. To prepare for interviews, identify and practice telling stories for each of these seven competency
INSIDER TIP Many employers will openly discuss their chosen “competencies” with candidates at a Career Fair, Networking & Information Session, or other recruiting or educational event, like a “pre-night” the evening before the interviews.”
areas, demonstrating at least one of the related qualities in your example.
Concrete/Technical Skills `` Research skills
`` Argue and persuade effectively
`` Data analysis/handling large data sets
`` Communicate globally
`` Tech/social media savvy `` Computational power `` Quantitative instincts `` Qualitative analysis `` Coding Languages: Java, C++, Python, Ruby, etc.
Learning Orientation `` Intellectual curiosity `` Quick learner `` Flexible and adaptive `` Open to new ideas `` Innovative `` Reflect on mistakes, able to make improvements
Problem Solving `` See multiple possibilities `` Evaluate options `` Synthesize/integrate information `` Multidisciplinary approach `` Entrepreneurial approach `` Think on feet
Critical Thinking `` Deal with complexity `` Handle ambiguity `` See issues from multiple perspectives `` Uncover flaws in arguments `` Ask good questions
Leadership `` Demonstrate initiative `` Justify decisions `` Advocate `` Motivate `` Conviction `` Good judgment and integrity `` Resolve differences
Teamwork `` Consensus builder `` Listen to others `` Show intellectual hospitality `` Collaborative `` Ability to work in diverse teams
`` Strong writing skills
`` Aware of diverse/global perspectives
`` Public speaking and presentation skills
`` Can build professional relationships and network
In addition to determining how your interests and skills “fit” with the position and organization, the interviewer is often also trying to assess how you might fit in regards to the company or team culture. Sometimes fit questions are simply about whether you can connect with the interviewer on some other topic apart from your work or Harvard experience. Consider how you want to discuss another interest that you have, whether it be art, current events, gaming, etc., should an interviewer ask you about them – especially if you have referenced these interests on your resume Many interviewers also apply what is colloquially referred to as the “airport test,” especially in fields where people work for long hours in teams. While they are listening to your responses, the interviewer is mentally asking him or herself, “Is this someone I could be stuck with at an airport for 12 hours?” It is important to keep in mind that this question is not a social question about friendship – this question is in a professional context to encapsulate other questions like: “Can you make the most out of a bad situation?” and, “Can you get along with your colleagues for long periods of time under less than ideal circumstances?” You may consider applying this test yourself as you evaluate whether this is an organization or field where you want to work.
Finance Interviews Because of the highly analytical and quantitative nature of the field, finance interviewers may purposely create a challenging environment to test how you will respond in an actual work situation. It is not uncommon for the interviewer to ask seemingly odd questions in a rapid-fire manner such as, “Quick, what is your SAT score?” or perhaps, “A client is screaming at you on the phone, how are you going to calm the situation?” Even the interview room may be set up so that multiple interviewers have a role to play in creating a test situation (think good cop/bad cop). Remember, in these types of interviews, employers want you to showcase your ability to remain composed under stress, analyze a situation, and form conclusions about the situation. The finance interview seeks to assess two things in a candidate: (1) fit for the job and the organization and (2) technical knowledge. In the world of finance, there are multiple functions such as investment management, investment banking, sales, trading, brokerage, financial advising, etc. Assessing “fit” for a position usually involves questions you are familiar with such as “Tell me about yourself,” and “Why are you interested in working for our organization?” The technical questions will be specific to the finance area for which you are interviewing. For example, common questions for investment management might be “Tell me about your dream stock portfolio? What is your investment strategy? If you are given a market or an industry, what would be the steps to evaluate them?” The point here is to make sure that you have adequately reviewed the basic concepts of the area you are interviewing for and keep up to date on the literature in the field such as the Wall Street Journal and/or The Financial Times. It is especially important to review the financial news on the day of a finance interview. Finance interviews may also use case questions as part of their general interview format. Although the use of case questions in finance interviews varies depending on the employer, it is important to be prepared.
Case Interviews The case question, inherent in many business and consulting interviews, is one way of determining whether a candidate has the aptitude for handling complex business problems. How a candidate answers a case question can reveal both the student’s ability to do the job and his or her desire to do so. Questions are sometimes drawn directly from the employer’s experience or can be crafted on the spot from news of the day. Most employers (and most interviewers) don’t expect in-depth business knowledge or high-level business terminology (there are exceptions, usually on the individual interviewer level). What they are looking for is whether the student has the analytical or problem-solving ability and the business sense to know what matters in a specific situation and the communication skills to explain and discuss it clearly. Most often, the employer verbally presents a business scenario to the candidate and asks how he/she would approach the problem. Sometimes, usually in later round interviews, some employers will present the candidate with a case study in print and allow the candidate a designated period of time to analyze the data either alone or in groups. If the case CASE INTERVIEW question is presented verbally, make sure you understand what is being asked of you. Reiterating the question is an effective way of confirming that you’re on the STEP BY STEP right track, but it also gives you a moment to think about the situation with which you are faced. 1. Repeat the question Once you are sure you understand what has been presented, don’t be afraid to ask a few questions. A few clarifying questions may well save you from launching into an elaborate analysis that lacks focus and misses the point. In preparing to answer the case, don’t feel that you need to dive headfirst into immediate solutions. Remember that it’s not the solutions they’re looking for, it’s the analysis. They want to hear how you’re thinking about this problem. Organize your thoughts. Think of a systematic way to look at the evidence that has been
2. Ask clarifying questions 3. Organize your thoughts 4. Share your thoughts on how you are solving the problem with the interviewer 5. Suggest solutions
presented to you. The case interview guidebooks offer a variety of frameworks and strategies that can be useful tools for organizing your thoughts, but none take the place of common sense. You may not have taken business courses at Harvard, but you most certainly learned how to use analysis and reasoning. Begin by talking about how you “might” want to look at the situation. Taking the time to introduce your approach allows the employer to see that you get the “big picture.” In a first-round interview it is unlikely that you will have time to proceed through all of the analysis that is necessary. Having scored you on understanding the scope of the problem and developing a strategy, the employer may very likely suggest that you spend the rest of your time on one area of the analysis. For example, “Let’s talk about the customer. How would you carry out that analysis?” According to Adam Borchert, ‘98; Manager, Bain & Company, “A case interview is a dialogue about a business problem derived from real-life business situations. During the course of the discussion, the interviewer and interviewee will collaboratively work through a number of qualitative and quantitative approaches to the business question. The discussion typically moves from identifying a critical issue, breaking the problem into component parts, and finally recommending one or more solutions.
A case interview is a dialogue about a business problem derived from real-life business situations.”
A consulting firm, such as Bain & Company, uses case interviews to see how you think about the types of business problems we work on each day. The best case -Adam Borchert, ’98 interviews are thoughtful and collaborative dialogues about potential approaches Manager, Bain & Company to solve a tough business problem. We are not looking for a “right answer” or asking you to display knowledge of specific business terms, current events or wellknown frameworks. Rather, we hope to see a good dose of analytical problem-solving skills, creativity, common sense and recommendations aimed at generating results for our clients. Finally, at Bain we believe a good case interview should be fun and thought provoking as it is very similar to discussions you would have daily as a member of our team.”
Technical/Coding Interviews If you are applying to a technical role like software developer, data scientist, or algorithmic trader, you should expect a technical interview or technical questions. Be prepared to code in any languages listed on your resume. Interviewers will typically have graph paper, a white board, or an online domain for you to display your code, but you may want to bring graph paper with you just in case. Sometimes puzzles and other types of coding challenges are also used. Similar to the case interview, puzzles and technical/coding challenges are often evaluating how you think and collaborate with team members, who in this case are your interviewers. Be prepared to discuss your code aloud with the interviewer and explain your choices. You may also want to review projects and class work you have completed to have examples ready to discuss. Usually technical/coding interviews include some behavioral interview questions, so prepare for those question types, as well. Many employers offer guidance prior to the interview regarding the format of the interview, including information about interview attire. Feel free to reach out to the contact listed in Crimson Careers for guidance regarding interview format.
Writing Thank You Letters/Emails Thank you letters to each interviewer are strongly recommended. Sending thank you letters via e-mail are usually sufficient because many employers make very quick decisions about whether a candidate should continue to the next round of their evaluation process. However, additional hand-written thank you notes can be a nice touch and a way to stand out, especially if you feel that your interviewer went out of his or her way to be helpful or informative. For OCI interviews, contact information for your interviewers will be available for you to collect before or after your interview at the interview location.
Most employers will invite you to visit on-site for a second interview if you are a serious candidate for employment. This does not mean that you are assured an offer – preparation for the second and/or final interview is essential so that you can present yourself effectively. Feedback from both employers and students indicates that second-round interviews have become increasingly rigorous and increasingly important in evaluating you as a candidate. You should never assume that you will receive an offer until the employer officially extends it. If an employer invites you back to their site for second or third round interviews, you can generally expect a fairly full day of meetings with a range of potential colleagues and supervisors. Make sure you get the names and titles of people with whom you’ll be interviewing so that you are prepared. The interviews are likely to be a similar type as your first round, but more in depth and with more and more senior-level interviewers. Know that while you are a serious candidate if you’ve made it to this stage, every part of the day (including lunch and dinner) is evaluative. Remember that the decision-making process should be a two-way process. Think about the information you need about the job, employer, and working conditions to make an informed decision, and go into your interviews prepared to try to glean the knowledge you need to make an informed decision.
SECOND AND FINAL ROUND INTERVIEWS INSIDER TIP If an employer offers any kind of assistance with preparing for interviews, TAKE IT! Many students make the mistake of trying to appear self-sufficient and don’t accept help when it’s offered. Instead, you should be prepared to take advantage of any interview guidance or practice that’s offered. Not only does it give you access and insight into an organization’s particular interview style, it demonstrates that you are willing to use all the resources available to you to secure the job or internship offer
If you decide to decline an invitation for a second interview, or if you have accepted a second round interview but cannot keep the appointment, please notify the employer as soon as possible. Employers expect to be treated with the same courtesy they extend to you. Declining employers promptly with poise allows you to maintain a relationship with that organization and keep representatives in your professional network, even if you do not end up working for them.
06 OFFERS & DECISIONS C
ongratulations! You’ve received an offer. Now what? The following information will help you think about how to:
`` Prioritize the offers you have received, and those you are still working on.
OFFERS & DECISIONS
`` Weigh job offers against other options such as graduate school and fellowships. `` Evaluate and negotiate compensation packages.
GETTING THE OFFER `` Say thank you – Many employers will give an initial offer over the phone. Show gratitude that you were selected among many candidates and express your continued and sincere interest in the position. The key point is that you don’t have to answer right away!
`` Ask to get your offer in writing – To thoroughly consider an offer and compare it to others, you
need to have access to the written details. Request the offer in writing when offered the position over the phone. Any employer should be able to mail or e-mail the official documentation to you.
`` Keep in touch – Even if you need time to make a decision, it is essential to keep in touch with your contacts at the organization. Make sure to return phone calls and emails from the employer in a timely manner. It is reasonable for them to check in and see where you are in your decision-making process, but if you feel like they are contacting you too frequently, you can be proactive and suggest the date for your next conversation. Then you can also plan to ask questions that will help you make the right decision!
`` Be an ACTIVE decision-maker – To make an effective decision, you may need to speak to more
people at an organization, negotiate some details of an offer, consult friends and family, and/or do some self- and career-assessment regarding your current and future goals. While you should be given time to make a thoughtful decision, you also have a responsibility to use your time wisely and not wait until the last minute.
ADVICE FROM HARVARD PRESIDENT DREW FAUST
You are at a moment of transition that requires making choices. And selecting one option – a job, a career, a graduate program – means not selecting others. Every decision means loss as well as gain—possibilities foregone as well as possibilities embraced...if you don’t try to do what you love—whether it is painting or biology or finance; if you don’t pursue what you think will be most meaningful, you will regret it. Life is long. There is always time for Plan B. But don’t begin with it.” -2008 Baccalaureate Address
GOALS Making decisions requires reflection to determine what direction you want to take. Before making a decision, ask yourself the following questions: `` Where do I see myself every day for the next year or two? `` What skills do I want to use? `` What do I want to learn and what will make me happy or satisfied? `` How do I want to make an impact?
OFFERS & DECISIONS
The goal is to reach a decision that is consistent with who you are and what you hope to achieve. This is true whether you are comparing job offers, graduate programs, or fellowships for post-graduate study or travel and weighing these against one or more additional options. The decision to accept a job or other career option is a very personal one, and often involves talking to lots of people and both listening to your gut and taking a leap of faith.
EVALUATING THE OPPORTUNITY When considering job offers, ask yourself: `` What are the potential paths that could follow after accepting the position? What will I learn from this job? Where could those skills and experiences take me in the future? `` Do I like and respect my potential coworkers? Do I feel comfortable with the culture of the organization? Do people seem happy working there? `` Will I have the opportunity to meet new people in the field, and expand my network of professional connections? `` Am I happy with the job location, in terms of cost of living, climate, proximity to family, and opportunities for social life or cultural activities?
ONCE YOU MAKE A DECISION `` Accept Your Offer – You can accept an offer with an employer over the phone, but be sure to follow any
instructions that they provide via e-mail or mail. There is often a fair amount of paperwork that takes place to make you an official member of the team.
`` Decline Offers – When you know you are no longer interested in an employer, withdraw from the
applicant pool or decline their offer as soon as possible. Interviewing with or holding onto an offer with an employer that does not interest you wastes your time, wastes the employer’s time, may impact other students who are hoping for that opportunity, and may damage your own professional reputation. You can decline an offer over the phone, but be sure to reiterate your appreciation as you do so. You should also follow up with any person at the organization who you’ve come to know during the job search process. Do not leave a voicemail message or send an e-mail to decline an offer. If the contact person is not available, leave a message for them to call you back or use e-mail to schedule a time to have a realtime conversation.
`` Remember, It’s A Small World – In all your interactions with employers, always be polite, professional,
and respectful of people’s time. Even if you ultimately decide not to work with a particular employer, you never know when your professional paths may cross again. It is in your best interest to keep the people you meet during the job search process in your network. A strong network is the best job security and vital to your own professional development.
MAKING A COMMITMENT As you are making this immediate career decision, think about where it will lead you. While this may well be your first fulltime job or career decision, it most certainly will not be your last. Barring unforeseen circumstances, you should expect to stay in your first job for one to two years. It will take time for you to gain both the quantity and quality of experience to use as leverage for your next career evolution. Never accept an offer and continue looking for additional opportunities. This is considered an egregious breach of ethics, and can seriously harm your reputation in your chosen field. Keep in mind that people within fields usually know one another and have been known to compare notes. Similarly, employers often self-police the practice of reneging on offers by rescinding any offer to a candidate who has reneged with another firm. If an opportunity has come along that you would like to pursue after you have accepted a job offer, seek advice from OCS and contact the employer that has made you the offer, let them know about the situation, and ask their advice.
OFFERS & DECISIONS
Maintain Relationships When you ultimately come to a conclusion, it is important to remember that it is a small world. The opportunity you don’t take today may well be right for you in a few years. Being as gracious when declining an offer as you are when accepting one can go a long way towards building a network of contacts that will stay with you a lifetime. Finally, trust yourself. In the end, only you can decide whether or not a job is right for you.
What to do … IF… You receive an offer that you are really excited about…
THEN… Don’t delay! There is no reason to drag out the process if you have received an offer you are happy with. Examine the details of the written offer, clarify or negotiate if necessary, and accept in a timely manner. After you accept, be sure to decline any other outstanding offers.
You have multiple offers, but none stand out as the best choice…
Even if you are unsure which option is best, do not wait until you have all possible offers in hand to start making decisions. You should be actively evaluating options against each other and your ideal and not hold more than two or three offers at a time. Declining offers in a timely manner helps you maintain good relationships with employers, even if you decide not to work for them. It is respectful of their time and allows them to give an offer to someone else.
You have an offer, but you want to hold out for something else…
It is acceptable to ask an employer for more time to make a decision on an offer, but don’t do so unprepared. Have a realistic sense of how much time you need and always express appreciation and enthusiasm for the existing offer. If you are granted more time, be sure to call the other employer and let them know you have an offer pending. If they really want you, they may be able to speed up the process. Also be prepared for what you will do if the employer does not give you more time.
You accepted an offer, but something better has come along…
Once you have accepted an offer, you have given a good-faith commitment to honor it. Reneging on an offer is a breach of your agreement, can jeopardize your professional reputation, and can damage Harvard’s relationship with that organization. However, you can initiate honest and open communication with your employer for advice and counsel. Stop by OCS Drop-In Hours or make an appointment with an OCS adviser to discuss your options.
Remember to consult an OCS adviser for guidance, whether you are in the midst of any of the scenarios above or experiencing a unique problem.
Salary While compensation shouldn’t be the sole focus of your analysis, it is an essential component of any job decision. Keep in mind that if you are looking at more than one type of job, you may be looking at different sets of numbers. One cannot
compare, for instance, an entry level position in publishing with one in consulting. The starting salaries for these fields are simply too different, but each may teach you a lot and lead to other interesting opportunities. Many websites offer a combination of salary data by job title, industry, and/or field, as well as salary calculators to help determine how salaries may be impacted by cost of living in different geographic regions. Here are a few examples: `` Payscale.com `` Salary.com `` Glassdoor.com `` NACE Salary Calculator available through Crimson Careers (uses data from the U.S. Department of Labor) Also remember that compensation includes more than base salary. Bonuses and Benefits may seem like a minor piece of the puzzle, but they can come with a considerable price tag once you begin paying the bills. Benefits to consider include:
OFFERS & DECISIONS
`` Bonus Structure (Yearly, Performance-Based, etc.) `` Stock Options or Profit Sharing `` Paid Leave (Vacation Time, Sick Time, and Personal Days) `` 401K or Other Retirement Saving `` Education Benefits `` Relocation Benefits `` Health, Life, and Disability Insurance
Negotiating Think carefully before negotiating a job offer and actively seek outside benchmarks and guidance from industry research, your personal and professional network, and resources at OCS. Competitive organizations usually offer a set package that is identical to those offered to all new hires. Unless you offer something significant in terms of additional, relevant education or experience over and above other candidates receiving an offer, it is unlikely that you will be able to negotiate additional monetary compensation. This is especially true in a down economy, when many organizations have frozen salaries or reduced staff. However, there are several aspects of your offer or decision time line that you may want to negotiate instead or in addition to salary. If you do decide to negotiate, plan to have the conversation over the phone. Have notes in front of you, and try practicing beforehand with a friend, parent, or OCS adviser.
Some negotiation guidelines: NEVER
Never wait until the last minute to negotiate
Research the industry to best represent yourself during negotiation
Never misrepresent yourself or a competing offer in any way
Get advice from recent alums, professionals in the field, OCS advisers, and family members
Never negotiate over e-mail (some exceptions for negotiating across time zones)
Listen carefully for tone of voice and other cues that will help you navigate the negotiation
Never get confrontational (and always behave professionally!)
Know what your deal-making and deal-breaking factors are ahead of time
On-Campus Interview Offers Students need to be aware that many employers in the On-Campus Interview Program (OCI) have a very short time line from when first round interviews start to when offers are made to candidates. Sometimes students feel pressured by employers to accept an offer quickly. If a time frame is not within our constraints stated in the OCI Offer Policy, please contact the On-Campus Interview Office and we will help negotiate the correct amount of time needed to make the decision.
Often the person making the offer is simply not aware of our Offer Policy.
On-Campus Interview Program Offer Policy In order for students to make effective decisions, they must explore as many of the options open to them as possible. At the same time, students are expected to be active decision makers, avoid waiting until the last minute, and honor commitments and agreements that they make during the on-campus interview process. All companies participating in the On-Campus Interview Program (which includes all interviews conducted offcampus with students whose resumes have come to through OCI) must follow this timetable:
Full-Time Hiring Offer Timetable
OFFERS & DECISIONS
Date of Offer:
Offers resulting from previous summer internship obtained through OCI
Thursday, October 30, 2014
Offers resulting from Fall OCI
Thursday, December 4, 2014 or 3 weeks from Date of Offer (whichever is LATER)
Offers resulting from Spring OCI
Friday, February 20, 2015 or 3 weeks from Date of Offer (whichever is LATER)
Internship Hiring Offer Timetable Date of Offer
Offers resulting from previous summer internship obtained through OCI
Friday, February 20, 2015
Offers resulting from Spring OCI
Friday, February 20, 2015or 3 weeks from Date of Offer (whichever is LATER)
`` No Exploding Offers. We expect employers to honor all offers made to students and that no conditions will be
placed on the offer (e.g., “We have 10 offers outstanding for 8 openings and will accept the first 8 students who get back to us,” etc.). No financial incentive (e.g., “We will provide a $5,000 bonus if you sign today,” etc.) may be offered to induce students to accept offers early.
`` Students should always insist on receiving offers in writing. Please examine the contract you sign very carefully. Students who renege on offers after both parties have signed will be denied future access to the OnCampus Interview Program.
`` Reneging on a Job Offer is considered an egregious breach of ethics and will create an adverse relationship not
only between you and the employer, but also between the employer and Harvard. Students who do renege on a job offer will have their Crimson Careers account blocked immediately and will have to meet with the Director of the On-Campus Interview Program. If an opportunity has come along that you would like to pursue after you have accepted a job offer, consult OCS and contact the employer that has made you the offer. Let them know about the situation and ask their advice.
Get Offer Help at OCS `` Offers and Decisions Workshops and Office Hours: Check the OCS Google Calendars for updates and additions
`` OCS Drop-Ins: Monday – Friday, 1 - 4pm @ OCS
07 life after college Who am I?
What is the world?
How can I make an impact and make the world a better place?
How can I be effective?
What am I good at?
Whom do I want to be with and learn from? How can I contribute to my family,
How do I fit in? community, country and the world?
individualized path is not as hard as it sounds, since there are plenty of road maps and people willing to help and give advice. The hardest part is learning how to make decisions about choices while you are still trying to decide what the path might look like. You may also want to think about selecting a “Board of Advisors” to help you consider these questions and make intelligent decisions about what to pursue next. Many students seek out family, friends with similar interests, college faculty and administrators, career service advisers, alumni, employers and others with “insider knowledge” of what they are thinking of doing to advise them along their path. The more you talk openly with people about the pros and cons of different choices the more informed your decision making will be. Also take advantage of all the experts who come to campus to speak and gather their advice, as well. Your past experiences, the current economic conditions and luck will each affect what options are open to you at any given point in time. Since there is no right path and multiple ways to the same end points, your choice of a first post-graduate experience can be seen more like an experimental research project than the selection of a “career.” Think of it as testing a hypothesis about what might be a good next step for you. Ask yourself: Where will I learn interesting skills and information? Where will I meet interesting people? What part of the world do I want to be in? What might this experience lead to? Do I need or want to be close to any particular friends or family at this point in time? Try not to worry too much about
LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
It may seem counter-intuitive, but at graduation your learning has just begun! “What do I want to do with my life?” is a question people continue to reflect on across their lifespan. Over time the people you meet and the experiences you have will help refine your thoughts about this question. One of the goals of a Liberal Arts education is to help you begin the answer-seeking process in the rich pool of resources that universities have amassed for you to learn from. However, you will need to develop new skills and acquire new information continually to be successful in a changing world. After graduation the rules change for measuring success, and this can be a difficult transition. For most Harvard students, high school success came from following an approved script of achievement in areas like grades, athletics, extracurriculars, standardized tests and other measurable activities where the goals and standards were pretty straightforward. After college, however, there is no one-size-fits-all approved script for success. Instead there are thousands of pathways in millions of directions with many different opportunities and definitions of success. The first few years out of college can be like driving on a road in the fog. You can’t really see where you are going, but by looking ahead at the part of the road you can see in the headlights you still manage to reach your destination. Each person is responsible for designing their pathway and figuring out where their skill set is best applied. Beginning to think about an
what you do next as long as it exposes you to interesting across many different experiences. What if you discover you really don’t like what you people, knowledge, skills and future pathways. Across time you will need to accumulate many experiences, skills and selected, the experience isn’t what you expected or you expertise in an area to be truly effective. The order in which think you made a mistake? Just like an experiment where you learn these skills and add them to your growing tool kit the result is negative, you will have learned a tremendous is not usually a critical factor. In fact, bringing knowledge amount about what variables matter. Learning what you don’t like to do is as important and connections from as learning what you do like. disparate fields and A “mistake” is a window of different sectors, such as Once you embark on your first postclarity. All of a sudden the private for-profit, not-forgraduate experience, continue to test your fog lifts on the road in front profit and public sectors, hypothesis: collect feedback and data by of you and you see which fork often leads to novel checking in with yourself periodically to reflect you did not want to take. This solutions to problems. and evaluate how the experience is going. ” is a gift to you since it is better Once you embark on to learn these lessons early in your first post-graduate life rather than later. experience, continue Remember you will have a to test your hypothesis: collect feedback and data by checking in with yourself long life of getting to know yourself and the world you live periodically to reflect and evaluate how the experience is in and you will be in a continual state of learning, changing going. Are you still learning, meeting interesting people and developing. Life is about the choices you make along and moving forward in a positive direction? Trust your the road, the twists and turns you take, the stops and starts, gut feelings. When you have stopped learning and growing the planned and unplanned experiences. Through careful in an experience or if you feel bored, this is feedback that experimentation, choice and reflection you will build it is time to start thinking about what you may want to and follow a path that is right for you. The Office of do next. Ask yourself, is it time to go back to graduate or Career Services looks forward to helping you with your professional school, or time to change jobs? Following this plans and journey. approach over time will allow you to grow and change
LIFE AFTER COLLEGE 48
08 ALUMNI PROFILES public service: rewarding service
In November 2008, I arrived in Kenya to a country full of citizens claiming “Obama ni yetu” (Obama is ours) who were excited to discuss with any American they could find the recent presidential election and, consequently, their reinvigorated hope for the world. Admittedly, the timing of my arrival in Kenya could not have been better. Despite the newness of Obama’s victory having worn off, in the nine months that have followed my arrival, Kenyans have never failed to treat me kindly or faltered in their excitement to share cultural ideas. I have felt so welcomed that they might as well have been saying “Emily ni yetu.” Throughout the year, I have been working in Kenya as a secondary school math and biology teacher through the United States Peace Corps. While on any given day my experiences can run the
EMIILY BAKER ‘08 PEACE CORPS
emotional gamut, I have not once world, you will learn a lot about it doubted my decision to serve as a and about yourself, too. volunteer. Since arriving in Kenya, If you are looking for a I have gotten the opportunity to structured way in which to discover as much about myself as volunteer overseas, then the Peace I have discovered about this new Corps could be for you. It is an culture of which I have become a established program that knows part. I have learned the challenges how to look out for the safety of and rewards of its volunteers a profession in while also If you are thinking education, some giving them the about serving as a that apply globally indep endence volunteer overseas, you owe it to yourself and some that are and flexibility to try. specific to Kenya. to assist their I have forged communities in new friendships, the manner the whether they are with fellow volunteers identify as being most Peace Corps Volunteers, teachers I appropriate. Upon arriving in the spend a majority of my week with, country, Peace Corps is helpful in or the mama I buy my produce cultural adjustment, setting up a from who patiently deciphers my two-month home stay and training incomprehensible use of the local you in the local language(s) to tribal language. At times I feel that ease your integration into the I have lived more in the past nine country in which you are serving. months than I have in my previous With the structure that Peace 22 years. Corps offers come certain rules If you are thinking about that must be followed, but these serving as a volunteer overseas, rules are generally justifiable and you owe it to yourself to try. The are instituted for the safety of people you meet should make you the volunteer. For the most part, smile, might make you cry, and Peace Corps gives you the tools will definitely take you in as one to be an effective volunteer, but of their own. You will experience the responsibility is on you to use cultural differences that reinforce them. that you are thousands of miles So if you want to learn about from home while simultaneously the world and about yourself, feel welcomed by people who act consider serving abroad. If you as a surrogate family. While the want to serve with an established work you do might not save the organization, join the Peace Corps.
TO OCS 01 WELCOME Where high-tech meets high-finance.
Average project team size
Number of training courses or books available to employees
Percentage of high-tech engineers and quantitative researchers
Picture yourself as part of a leading global financial institution built on a culture of rapid innovation, technology and entrepreneurialism. Weâ€™re looking for big, brave thinkers who want to have a real, immediate impact on our firm, the financial markets and the global economy.
MEET CITADEL Number of volunteer hours logged on 2013 Citadel Service Days
2014 Harvard OCI Fair: September 5th, 12:00 PM Tech Talk: September 10th at 6:00 PM SEAS, Room MD 119 Harvard On Campus Interviews: September 23rd at 9:00 AM Opportunities are available for our Trading, Financial Technology, and Quantitative Research Roles
EDUCATION: all you need is a skill
It was once said that those who cannot do, teach. The idea behind this sayingwas that teachers do not produce anything tangible. The belief was that people go into teaching because they do not possess skills that are truly useful, or because they just couldn’t make it in more demanding professions. The education reform movement in America is looking to change this longstanding intransigent view. Many efforts have been made to professionalize the teaching workforce, finding more efficient ways to recruit, train, and retain teachers. In addition, many resources have been spent attempting to restructure school districts, introduce charter schools, and reduce class sizes so that teachers can make deeper connections with students. However, not many people are working to fundamentally change our views on who teaches and how. When I was a teenager I developed a passion for helping people find fulfilling next steps in their life journey. As a junior at my small Maryland high school, I displayed that passion in placing small pins on a large U.S. map of all the places where our seniors had gotten into college. When I arrived at college myself, I evolved that passion into helping my peers find fulfilling careers. I worked
their careers in engaging fun ways for middle school students. In addition, I managed multiple projects in the morning to improve staffing support for all the Teaching Fellows throughout the entire national organization. I wasn’t only teaching; I was working behind the scenes to see how we could better implement our model around the country. In doing so, I got multiple perspectives on all the work there is to do in education reform and I developed a better idea of how I wanted to contribute after the Fellowship.The bonus is that I did all of this while constantly pursuing my passion of helping others find fulfilling next steps, whether it was my 6th grade class, Google engineer Citizen Teachers, or my peers at Citizen Schools. After the Teaching Fellowship, I continued at Citizen Schools as a recruiter finding great new educators excited about having an experience as awesome as mine. I have continued to apply my skills and passion for helping people find fulfilling next steps as a Recruitment Manager at Commongood Careers and now as Director of Talent Recruitment at StudyPoint. From my experience workingin the education field, I now know that the debate over education reform is too narrow. The parameters are too small. To reform education, we need to involve more than just our traditional classroom teachers. From experience, I can say that teaching is very demanding and our teachers don’t have enough time in the day to close the achievement and opportunity gaps by themselves. It involves all of us going into classrooms and teaching what we know. Teachers do so much more than teach; they teach others how to do by doing it themselves. That is what an apprenticeship is. Everyone can teach. All you need is a skill. What will you teach?
PHILIP PARHAM ‘09 STUDY POINT
on raising awareness of the variety of career options available to students, particularly in the nonprofit and social sector. It was through that work that I learned more about education reform and the exciting opportunities both inside and outside of the classroom. By the time I was a senior, I was convinced that I wanted to enter education, but I wasn’t sure about being a full-time teacher in a classroom or a full-time grantwriter in an office for a nonprofit focused on education reform. I discovered Citizen Schools through the Center for Public Interest Careers and was drawn byits unique approach to reforming education in America. Citizen Schools seeks to redefine and expand the parameters of both the school day and who teaches in the classroom. Instead of having students attend classes for just six hours a day, Citizen Schools partners with middle schools and school districts to expand the learning day by three hours, giving middle school students time to work on their academics in a hands-on environment,while introducing and reinforcing concepts such as college access. Beyond traditional extended-day programming, Citizen Schools brings professionals into the classroom as volunteer Citizen Teachers to teach apprenticeships. Students work on a semester-long project with their Citizen Teachers to develop final products, ranging from making robots with Google engineers to designing menus and business models with b.good managers in Harvard Square. All of this is to expose students to next step opportunities they can pursue. For me, working as a National Teaching Fellow for Citizen Schools was the perfect opportunity. For two years, I got to teach my own classes in the afternoon while training Citizen Teachers on how to best transmit
education: a global career in education
REBECCA RUSKIN ‘13 EDUCATION FIRST Never in a million years did I think I would work for an education company. I was a science concentrator, and, given that I did not want to go to medical school or become a scientist, I assumed that I would go through the recruiting season like many of my peers and work in management consulting for two years in a big city before finding out what I was really interested in. Then I came across a job description for EF Education First’s 360 Global Management Trainee position. The description immediately caught my attention, stating that this job was
for someone who isn’t afraid of jet lag, getting their hands dirty, and ready to whip out their passport to attend meetings in major global cities like London and Shanghai. Even the application question was intriguing – it asked me to use a variety of random things (from pink jumpsuits to night vision goggles) to create a business idea. It sounded like a start-up from somewhere in Silicon Valley – not an education company in Boston. Knowing that I would go on to accept a full-time offer from EF after graduation, I began interning with their PR team during my senior spring to learn what the company and education industry were all about. During my third week as an intern, EF flew me to Costa Rica to help out with their Global Student Leaders Summit, a 2-day leadership summit where high school students working international teams to create sustainable solutions to global environmental issues. I even got to meet Al Gore, the keynote speaker! After only a few months at EF I learned that the Education encompasses many different fields, products, ideas, and opportunities. It is one of the fastest growing industries in today’s global economy and the demand has created opportunities for EF, a market leader
in the international education space, to grow and innovate in a rapidly changing landscape. Rather than beginning my EF 360 year right away in Boston, EF supported and encouraged my desire to live and work in China. I moved to Beijing to help organize the 2014 Global Student Leaders Summit in China. Collaborating with EF teams in Boston and Shanghai, I not only learned how to organize a large-scale global event with people in different countries and time-zones, but also how to effectively incorporate educational value into everything I was doing. As I continued working from Beijing and meeting people from all of EF’s global offices, the opportunity presented itself for me to become a 360 Global Management Trainee in Beijing rather than return to Boston. In my current role, I’m part of a small team that is bringing one of EF’s largest American products, Educational Tours,to China. I’m not only learning how to break into a new market, but also how to think strategically through the lens of an educator. Although we’re part of a large successful company, the team I work on thinks and operates like a start-up and each day brings a new challenge.
HEALTH TECH:NEW FRONTIERS IN HEALTH CARE ALUMNI PROFILES
My indefinite postponement of medical school is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I was never one of those people who dreamt about becoming a doctor; rather, it seemed like a reasonable and responsible pursuit when I declared myself as a Biochemical Sciences concentrator in the spring of 1997. I liked science, all of my friends were pre-med, my parents were thrilled at the thought of having a physician in the family, and having a “M.D.” after my last name seemed pretty cool – what could go wrong? So I went through the motions –
pre-med classes, Kaplan, MCAT practice tests in the Leverett Library -- and found myself dreading the next step of actually applying to medical school. I had spent four years with people who were passionate about medicine and driven to fulfill a lifelong dream, and I knew I did not have that same passion and drive. But I did love other things related to health care: how socioeconomic factors influenced health outcomes, why it was so hard to find a primary care physician, and the reasons my father always complained about his health insurance premiums.
If I could have a conversation with my 20-year old self, I was say: focus on what you like doing and less on what you think you should do.”
On a complete lark, I took a health care policy class senior year and realized I could have a career in health care without being a health care provider. And so, for the first time ever, I went with my gut and decided to pursue a different path after graduation. It only took 5 years for my father to stop asking about my medical
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school applications. I approached my search for non-health health care jobs in a manner that fit my scientific training: I searched for the word “health” on the Office of Career Services recruiting website, wrote down the name of each company that came back with a match, JASMINE GEE ‘99 and submitted resumes ATHENA HEALTH and cover letters: health insurers, health care consulting companies, state health agencies, you name it. The first company that called me back was as a small start-up company called “athenahealth”, and I’ve been here ever since. I have been extremely lucky here at athenahealth, a cloud-based business service that took a chance on a young, smart, and slightly confused woman 11 years ago. What began as a “job” blossomed into an extremely fulfilling and challenging career that explores the business side of health care, its impact on policy, and the ways technology enables (or hinders) the delivery of care. Our vision at athenahealth is to become the nation’s health care information backbone and fundamentally transform the way providers coordinate and deliver care. I’ve implemented workflow processes within small physician offices and large health care systems, gathered business requirements and designs for our software application, served as a product manager for our largest service, educated our sales and marketing teams on government, industry, and competitive movements, and followed our CEO around the world for a year. On any given day, my fellow athenistas and I may chat about about payment reform, the role of government in innovation, the strategic direction of our company, or trends within health care technology as a whole. Not bad for a pre-med refugee. If I could have a conversation with my 20-year old self, I was say: focus on what you like doing and less on what you think you should do. The qualities that got you to Harvard are the same qualities that will allow you to excel at what whatever piques your passion.
For more information about our schedule of on-campus information sessions and interview dates, please visit your school’s career services website.
BRACEBRIDGE CAPITAL 53
ENTERTAINMENT:a Passion for entertainment
WELCOME TO OCS
FELIPE TEWES ‘06 DIRECTOR, ACQUISITIONS HBO
As I began making the career fair rounds my senior year, I faced a daunting realization. One glimpse at the case study method books and a handful of conversations with fatigued alumni made it clear that, in contrast with the general mentality of consulting and banking as viable, accessible options, securing any job, not to mention carrying it out postgraduation, was an arduous prospect. If I was going to be climbing uphill, why not choose a path that aligned with my personal interests? I dedicated my senior year to tackling the shroud of mystery that surrounds the entertainment industry, by conducting research and informational interviews (using the alumni directory), as well as participating in programs such as Harvardwood 101, a great introduction to the various segments of the industry through a week long trip to L.A. during January. Harvardwood is a global organization for Harvard students, alumni, faculty and staff in the arts, media and entertainment (www.harvardwood. org). The Catch-22 in entertainment is that most “entry-level” (assistant) jobs require one or two years of experience. Often the only initial option is an unpaid internship, which was not feasible for me. Several
people pointed me in the direction of the talent agencies, not only because, due to their central position, they serve as a “grad school” for the business, but also because they wisely open their doors to entry-level candidates, knowing that they will serve as a wide network down the line. I was accepted into the agent training program (also known as “the Mailroom”) at the William Morris Agency (now William Morris Endeavor) the summer after graduation. WMA not only served as assistant boot camp, but it provided me with a top-notch “desk experience” qualification on my resume, as well as a network of peers that struggled through those first years together with me and still serve as contacts and friends. There is, of course, a mail cart involved for the first couple of months, but the access to scripts, materials, and individuals is unparalleled. Above all, you are trained to work entrepreneurially, even within a company, to secure each next step – the best preparation you can receive for a career in entertainment. I soon applied for and was offered a job at Focus Features, as the executive assistant to the CEO. The actual duties were unquestionably administrative, but the access to a heavy flow of information on production and distribution, as well as to the individuals within the organization, was crucial to my growing knowledge of the business. The position required great dedication and organization, but above all the ability to work well and respectfully with colleagues and contacts. I quickly learned that, in a business that is often unquantifiable and that depends in great part on connections, the best asset you can develop is a strong reputation. I served as an assistant for over two years, which allowed me to recently join HBO as a Manager in Film Programming, focusing on the acquisition of Latin American and/or Spanish-language films for the network.
I receive submissions from sales agents and other representation, travel the festival circuit, and actively reach out to rising filmmakers to find the needles in a haystack. The world of acquisitions can serve as great exposure to the wealth of material that is being produced, and is not as strictly based in Los Angeles as production is. It is worth mentioning that working in the industry as it currently stands more often than not requires a West Coast rotation. Simply put, these career paths require flexibility and pursuing opportunity where it arises, and opportunity tends to arise more often in the Pacific Time Zone. If I can offer one piece of advice in an industry that lacks a stable, determined path, it is to view each experience as an independent learning opportunity. It is overwhelming to approach each new commitment as merely a step to the next, a mentality far too prevalent in the entrylevel and assistant phase. There certainly is a “pay your dues” culture that will test your patience, but there is much to be learned while doing so that is necessary before stepping into roles with the burden of greater accountability. An executive I knew began his seminar for the interns each semester with one piece of advice: “Do not work in the film industry.” He then followed up with, “if you can imagine nothing but working in film for the rest of your life, in spite of my advice, then let’s talk.” There are certainly betterpaid career tracks with higher likelihoods for “success,” or fields where a Harvard degree will place you in better entry-level positions. However, if entertainment is a passion of yours that you would like to explore, and you come armed with patience and perspective, then do not let the shroud of mystery that surrounds it keep you from what could potentially be an exciting and fulfilling career.
Hi, coders. We’re
Hudson River Trading. You know, automated
trading, the kind that uses machine learning and smart algorithms to improve market efficiency. HRT is a tech company and our people are physicists and statisticians, engineers and mathematicians. We’re Harvard, MIT, CMU, Stanford, and more. At HRT, responsibility is distributed
systems engineer means you’ll work on challenging computer science problems. Become an algorithm developer and you will look at massive amounts of market data and use according to individual impact, so becoming a
a variety of tools
to come up with
complex strategies. If you are a hacker you’ll work in a powerful computing environment, where you will reduce latency and increase throughput, in a place where every
microsecond counts. And don’t be
fooled! We are not a typical finance company; our
coders are the most important
investment we have – and they know it. It’s no secret that your compensation ALUMNI PROFILES
high and you will be rewarded based on performance. Unlike other firms, our developers work in parallel with algo, because we think programming skills are a major part of what makes us successful. You might will be
think we’re a bunch of uptight suits here, but that’s CRAZY. We’re just smart,
passionate people who are coders 56
at HRT. <3
Meet us on campus September 5 at the Fall Career Fair • To learn more please visit us at: www.hudson-trading.com
CONSULTING: MANAGEMENT CONSULTING
was brought in to help a bank understand why its margins were declining. Over the course of the next four weeks, we spoke with senior executives across all the major business units to understand how their businesses functioned and where performance issues might exist. We identified potential explanations for the lower margin and used company data to test our ideas. Ultimately, we turned this work into a presentation for the Board of Directors, which had a major impact on how the company was run thereafter. For a twenty-three year old straight out of college, the level of access, engagement, and impact I had on that case was simply incredible in the most literal sense of the word. As for what makes consulting a phenomenal opportunity for recent grads, the answer is quite simple: learning. While the case I summarized above is one example of what consultants do, one of the best aspects of the job is that the industry, client, and topic are constantly changing, effectively ensuring that you are always learning something new. In my experience, this learning tends to come in two forms. First, you will gain an incredible amount of knowledge about specialized industry or topic knowledge depending on the particular case. Second, you will hone a broader set of skills focused on how to approach complex problems through stronger teamwork, better analytics, and more cohesive logic. To me, both aspects are valuable: the former creates an extremely broad knowledge base to draw from, while the latter ensures you are more effective at actually achieving your goals both now and in the future. While it is possible to learn these skills elsewhere, I firmly believe that few other industries offer both the speed of development and breadth of knowledge that consulting does. Consulting will also offer you innumerable opportunities for career advancement. In my mind, this means
ANDREW ALCORTA â€˜11
BOSTON CONSULTING GROUP increasing levels of exposure to senior individuals at the client, as well as thirdparty offers that tend to materialize after a few years in the job. I have seen colleagues and friends leave BCG to pursue their own start-ups, roles in private equity or finance, corporate positions, graduate school, and various opportunities abroad just to name a few. Personally, I have been able to do more within BCG than I ever would have dreamed from a first job. I have worked with top-level executives on the integration of major financial companies, prepared presentations for the board of Fortune 500â€™s, and advised major acquisitions for private equity funds. Geographically, I have spent a year living in Istanbul as part of BCGâ€™s transfer program and done projects with teams across more than 10 countries. Most importantly, I was constantly challenged and pushed to develop both personally and professionally during all of these experiences. The result of all these factors is that consulting is, simply put, an extraordinary first job. It is a job where career development can be taken as a given, where you will be surrounded by ambitious and intelligent people, and where you will come to work and feel like you are engaged and learning something new almost every single
Like many in the industry, my journey to consulting was neither linear nor premeditated. In fact, throughout most of college, if someone had asked me what my post-graduation life would consist of, I would have struggled to give any answer at all. Like many of you, I reveled in the liberal arts approach that Harvard allowed me to take. I bounced between courses in government, religion, and astronomy. And I spent summers studying architecture in Barcelona, working in Beijing, and interning at a startup. I loved the idea of being a generalist and realistically throughout most of college I had no real conception of what I wanted to do after graduation. Three years later, I feel extraordinarily lucky to have stumbled into a career in consulting. After a long and at times arduous recruiting process, I accepted an offer from The Boston Consulting Group, where I continue to work today. I will admit that even when I took the job, I lacked a particularly strong understanding of what consultants actually do. Between the multitude of recruiting presentations and the general rumblings around campus, I had gathered that it was a high-powered job that promised personal growth, but the day-to-day of my life-to-be remained a black box. Given that I imagine many of you share this sentiment, I want to take a moment to describe what consulting actually is and what makes it, in my mind, the best first job a recent graduate can have. At its most basic, the job consists of problem solving. You identify hypotheses, test those with whatever data is available, organize your findings in a meaningful way, and communicate them to your audience. (I would note that these are all skills that generally serve people well regardless of their profession.) A concrete case example may help clarify what all of this actually means. In one of my first projects, BCG
day. I fully accept that consulting may not be the right path for everyone, but I do think it is a profession worth serious
consideration as you go through the recruiting process. Whether you are looking for a long-term career or are
simply looking to test the waters of the business world, I cannot think of a more interesting place to start.
start ups: A passion for fashion
ASHLEY KANG ‘12 RENT THE RUNWAY
When I was nine years old, I thought I wanted to be an investment banker when I grew older. Upon entering Harvard, I continued to pursue internships in finance and received a full-time offer at the bank of my choice. But despite spending each summer in finance, I realized I spent the majority of my time outside of the classroom exploring the fashion industry. I produced fashion shows, hosted conferences about the retail industry, and began exploring the fashion startup world. Talking to founders of fashion start-ups, I realized the start-up world offered a unique opportunity to combine my interests in fashion and business by disrupting the industry. A mentor once advised, “Work for the smartest person you can find and a business model you believe in.” Taking this advice to heart, I reached out to the co-founders of Rent the Runway to
A mentor once advised, “person “Work for the smartest you can find and a
business model you believe in.”
get firsthand experience at a start-up before committing to switching careers. Working directly for the co-founder, I immediately got exposure to all parts of the business, went to meetings with clients, and really learned how the operational side of the business worked. In only a few weeks, I felt I had learned more about how to be an efficient and creative worker than I had during my three summer internships. And most importantly, I looked forward to going to work every day. Each day was unique, unpredictable, and left me with a sense of fulfillment. I decided to take the plunge and join the business development team at the company fulltime. In the past year, I have had the opportunity to learn more about the collaborative consumption space, to meet and learn from many incredible entrepreneurs, to pitch and execute numerous partnership and sponsorship deals, and to receive tremendous mentorship from my managers. One of the most valuable aspects of working at Rent the Runway has been the amazing team. Although the company is now four years old and growing quickly, my direct team is very small and all of us sit in one row at the office. Because we are a small team, I am able to learn and get immediate feedback from my managers. The first time I pitched a deal on my own, my manager gave me realtime feedback by writing me suggestions as I talked to the client. This type of great mentorship has given me the confidence to take risks, make mistakes, and to grow at an incredible pace. As a result, I have also been able to make myself more valuable to my team. I’ve seen this type of genuine interest in helping others at the company level as
well. For example, at a start-up you get a greater understanding of and respect for the operational side of the business. Our employees understand that operations is a tremendously valuable asset for the company and make decisions accordingly. During the busy seasons, everyone helps out and does everything necessary to ensure a good experience for our customers. This type of teamwork is celebrated at the greater level, with both small and big wins being announced to the entire company, and personal and professional successes being celebrated with equal praise. Working at a start-up has forced me to work on a great variety of deals, face a wide range of challenges, and meet a diverse group of people. The variety of my day-to-day has positioned me such that I am much more cognizant of what I enjoy, what I’m good at, and what I want to improve on. I’ve learned what type of work environment I enjoy, what type of people I like to work with, and the pace of the work-flow that I work best in. This learning experience is invaluable and something that you can’t necessarily get to the same degree of at a larger firm where the roles and responsibilities are predetermined. For students considering a job in start-ups, being at Harvard student is the best time to start exploring the industry. Join a start-up while you’re a student and see whether the environment fits your liking. Specifically to those interested fashion, ask yourself what it is that you like about fashion –whether it is the design, brand marketing, or in the case of Rent the Runway, or the emotional connection that people have to fashion.
ENGAGING AGENCY CAREER
Eventually though, I wanted to get back to practicing the craft of brand strategy more explicitly. What drew me to Sullivan was an appealing combination of 30,000-ftlevel perspective and on-the-ground activation. In the wide world of agencies, some firms focus on only one or the other, and what I have always liked is being able to not only define what makes a brand special but also to put it into action. These days, I feel privileged to help some of the world’s best-known brands figure out their stories and then translate them to real “stuff ”—ads, presentations, websites, or something else all together. A lot of people said, “What? You’re going from client-side back to an agency?” because the typical assumption is that you’ll start at an agency and then take a cushy client job somewhere. Don’t feel bound by conventional wisdom, because there are many happy agency-lifers as well as those who comfortably live on either side. If you’re considering an agency career in branding, marketing, or advertising, here are some tips for how you might find the place that fits you best. Questions to ask yourself How much do I care about the brand name of my employer? There are many wonderful places to work that you’ve probably never heard of. In many of those cases, the recognizable brand names live on the client roster. What’s my “sweet spot”? Ideally, your sweet spot lies at the intersection of what you’re drawn to and what you’re good at. Are you a big-picture thinker who wants to take a more academic approach to brands, or do you like making stuff that puts brand guidelines into practice? Do you like
JEAN HUANG ‘03 GROUP DIRECTOR, STRATEGY SULLIVAN the idea of seeing your work publicly run in the marketplace? None of these are mutually exclusive of course, but consider the focus of any agency you’re considering and what you prefer. What kind of industries do I want to learn more about? Take a look at the agency’s portfolio and ask what kinds of clients they typically work with. Do I want to learn the job in a more structured (and probably more specialized) environment, or do I want to touch a lot of areas? There are certainly pros and cons to both, and often a correlation between size and structure. As in: the bigger, the more structured, the smaller, the more entrepreneurial. In interviewing: Do I feel connection and chemistry with these people? You will probably spend more time with them than with anyone else in your life, so a good fit—in terms of personality, skill set, and otherwise—is critical. Some key ingredients for success Intellectual curiosity. You should be driven by a desire to know the “why” behind everything. Creative problem-solving ability. Our clients come to us for help figuring out what they need to do and how they
For as long as I can remember, I’ve been drawn to the world of brands. Even as a grade-school kid, I loved dreaming up imaginary businesses just so I could create snappy names and ads for them. It was only natural that I’d end up at a brand engagement agency, having learned a few lessons along the way. During my last couple years at Harvard, a small group of students came together to form the Advertising Club. We hosted guest speakers, held workshops at OCS, discussed Super Bowl ads, and generally kept each other motivated about our brazen career paths ahead. After having interned at JWT, I started full-time as an Assistant Account Executive on Lever 2000 and Ragu—soap and spaghetti sauce, classic CPG! That year was an amazing crash course on how to boil down the essence of your brand and get a message across in 30 seconds or less. It was a thrill to see the ads I’d worked on hit the airwaves and glossies. Working with a client as big as Unilever, JWT was one agency of many. Though we were the lead agency on our accounts, I started craving the ability to more directly impact the entire business, not just the ads. As a result, I went client-side to Calvin Klein fragrances, where I worked in global marketing on iconic brands like Obsession and Escape. The beauty bug bit me, and after CK I managed Dior’s North American makeup business for several years. With bottom-line responsibility, I worked on everything from product development to forecasting to selling every season in to retail buyers. Both of my beauty experiences sharpened my ability to understand what drives consumers’ perceptions at a high level and their behavior at point-of-sale.
should do it. Stellar oral and written communication skills. Communication is the business we’re in, and even if you don’t sit on the “creative” side of the house, you need to be fantastic at
expressing yourself and your thinking. Attention to detail. One typo can wreck an otherwise great deliverable! The ability to stay on your toes and react on the spot. Even when clients throw you a curve ball, you need to keep
a cool head and know just what to say. Hopefully these thoughts help you get a better sense of what it’s like in the agency world—it’s an exciting place to be once you find where you fit!
RETAIL MECHANDISING: A GLOBAL IMPACT
DAN MINAMIDE ‘12 ABERCROMBIE & FITCH When someone asks me what I do as a merchant at Abercrombie and Fitch, I often respond with, “Where do you want me to begin?” Merchandising at A&F is unique role that combines the traditional buying role with the product development process and allows the merchant to be exposed to
“ ALUMNI PROFILES
We work in an incredibly fast paced environment, and the demands of the business require merchants to be efficient and adaptable. A successful merchant is resilient, can react to the current business, and is constantly seeking new information about our product, competition, and consumer.”
every aspect of the business. At the completion of a comprehensive 5-week training program, every merchant at A&F is assigned to a specific product category. I was placed on Fleece Bottoms after training and have been working on that team ever since. As a merchant team, we are responsible for managing the details of our department’s styles, coordinating our cross-functional teams, analyzing daily sales by item, and conducting a top level analysis of our category’s position within the market. We work in an incredibly fast paced environment, and the demands of the business require merchants to be efficient and adaptable. A successful merchant is resilient, can react to the current business, and is constantly seeking new information about our product, competition, and consumer. Each season kicks off with a meeting between the merchant team, design team, and conceptual design team to identify emerging trends in the market and decide how to interpret these trends in a way that is appropriate for our brands. From here, we work with our merchandise planning team to create our sales plan for the upcoming season. We look at historical sales as well as current sales when making these financial projections. It is then our job as merchants to pick the correct, trend-right styles to buy in order to hit the sales plan given to us by our merchandise planning team. It is the merchant’s job to drive the bottom-line and, once our assortment is finalized, the merchants initiate the
production process with vendors all over the world! Merchants are often called the “hub” of the production wheel. We are the ones responsible for communicating the needs of the business to our crossfunctional teams in design, planning, sourcing, and inventory management. Merchants have daily contact with our vendors and are immediately responsible for managing strict production timelines, engaging in cost negotiations, and ensuring the product is received on time. This immediate exposure to our diverse vendor base was an incredible learning experience for me. One of the most exciting aspects about A&F has been our rapid international expansion strategy. In 2007, we operated in only 2 countries (United States & Canada) and today we have stores in over 19 countries! This includes Abercrombie & Fitch Flagship stores on Savile Row in London, the Ginza District of Tokyo, Milan, and Hong Kong. We also operate over 100 Hollister stores internationally and recently opened our first stores in the southern Hemisphere in Australia! It’s exciting to be a part of such a growthoriented company and our exploration into new markets presents a constant challenge to our merchant teams. Harvard University trains its students to be hardworking, intellectually curious, and entrepreneurial, all of which are qualities that are perfectly tailored the merchandising role at A&F.
investment banking: from science to business
While the hours can be long, and it can be difficult managing the workload and expectations of multiple projects and pitches, the sense of fulfillment after achieving a great outcome for your client makes all of the late nights seem worth it.”
healthcare practice, and high degree of deal exposure and responsibility given to analysts. Fortunately, I was given the opportunity to join Blair full-time, and over the past year I have spent most of the time working with the medical technology and biotechnology teams, and to even my own surprise, I have had a very rewarding experience. Reflecting on the past year, I have had the opportunity to work on 6 closed transactions (3 M&A and 3 equity offerings), in addition to the pipeline of other deals that I am currently working on. I have realized through these processes that Blair’s strategic advisory services create lasting value and meaningful change for our clients. While the hours can be long, and it can be difficult managing the workload and expectations of multiple projects and pitches, the sense of fulfillment after achieving a great outcome for your client makes all of the late nights seem worth it. One moment in particular that stood out for me was after the close of an IPO when our client’s CEO told us, “Looking to the journey ahead, our challenge, and our objective, is to use these funds to develop important new medicines that save lives.” Not only have I been able to work on fulfilling transactions, but I have also been able to learn in a very fast-paced environment, from honing my valuation and modeling skills to understanding the marketing and diligence processes of M&A transactions. Blair’s philosophy of engaging the analyst at every stage of the deal process has given me a unique opportunity to learn from not only my deal teams, but also from senior bankers at Blair and our clients. In addition, the analyst program allows you to start with a class
EASON HAHM ‘12 WILLIAM BLAIR & CO.
of your peers, which for me, has created a social and collegiate environment and support system. While I may not advocate investment banking as a career path for everybody, I strongly believe that being an analyst is a very gratifying experience and a great platform for next steps in your career, whether you want to pursue private equity, corporate development, graduate school, or remain in investment banking.
When I came to Harvard, I had never heard of the term “investment banking” and was still confused as to why everyone wanted to recruit for investment banking internships. As a freshman, I knew I wanted to study biomedical engineering and aspired to get my Ph.D after graduating. During my junior year, I was introduced to more of the business side of science through classes and lectures on campus. I was intrigued by the role investors played in the development and commercialization of science that drives technologies from the lab bench to a product. I was much more excited by the business development and strategy behind healthcare companies than the actual science behind the technology. To pursue this, I knew that I wanted to gain financial expertise to complement my science background and went into the senioryear recruiting process focused on investment banking positions at firms with strong healthcare verticals. During the recruiting process, William Blair & Company, a Chicagobased middle-market investment bank, was at the top of my list because of its small but supportive deal teams, strong
Full-Time General Analysts, Health Care Analysts, & Internship Opportunities We are looking for candidates who have a bachelor’s or master’s degree in economics, computer science, finance, health policy, mathematics, statistics or related subjects. Candidates should have strong quantitative, analytic, and organizational skills, and a desire to work in a pragmatic, research-oriented environment. Candidates will have opportunities to interact with academic affiliates and clients. After a few years at Analysis Group, many analysts go on to matriculate at top graduate and professional programs. Please visit our career section for more information:
To learn more about Analysis Group, visit us at: Harvard Career Fair on Friday, September 5, 12:00pm - 4:00pm Harvard Consulting Night on Friday, September 12, 3:00pm - 5:00pm Application Deadline: Wednesday, September 17 On Campus Interviews: Thursday, October 2 To apply for the Analyst position, please submit your resume, cover letter (including geographic preference), and unofficial transcript to the Career Service Department and Analysis Group’s website. Summer Internship candidates should apply through Analysis Group’s website starting in December. Please visit our career section for more information.
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CORPORATE STRATEGY: MAKING AN IMPACT
In the fall of my senior year, I was confused. I was an English major halfway through a creative thesis, but I didn’t want to be a writer. I wondered about law school, but going to class sounded exhausting. And I had enjoyed my internships (teaching, brand development, one glorious summer at Google), but I couldn’t quite shake the feeling in each of those places that I wasn’t in the right place – that I wasn’t making a real impact. So I did the only thing that made sense at the time: I bought a lot of cardigans and started going to information sessions. In that long September of career fairs and networking nights, Capital One Corporate Strategy made me pause and perk up. They were the first company I saw to spend as much time talking about their mission as about the job. The problem, they explained, is deceptively simple. Money is digital. Logically, no one ever needs to walk into a branch – and who even wants to? I couldn’t remember the last time I had been. And yet, when people go about choosing a bank, they think about which branch is closest to them, walk in, and set up an account. Digital products have a way of
POOJA VENKATRAMAN ‘12 CAPITAL ONE
punishing companies that over-invest wasn’t “should we go national?”; it was in the face-to-face (see Blockbuster, “how can we rebuild this thing from the Barnes & Noble, sad old Best Buy). ground up?” Customer behavior changes fast, and Within weeks, we were making trips adapting when you see the shift is often to San Francisco to meet with startalready too late. ups, interview customers, and design Capital One was not planning to wait. our product. By the time we finished, It prefers to predict where the world is the client team had put together a going and get there first. It wants not development time line and was talking only to get ahead of about release the industry but also dates. It was a But a first job isn’t about to help customers success – not picking an industry. It’s about make the transition, because we finding a place where you can try building better and had delivered a lot of things, be supported, and grow fast.” better experiences dozens of until branches as we slides (though know them become we did), but obsolete. because we had made a difference. The Strategy Group spends its time Initially, I had been wary of taking a working on this question, and many job in financial services. I didn’t know others like it. It’s a small group, about 40 anything about credit cards, didn’t have people, and sits directly under the CEO, a passion for checking accounts. But a looking out over the vast machinery of first job isn’t about picking an industry. a Fortune 500 company and picking It’s about finding a place where you can out the most interesting and impactful try a lot of things, be supported, and projects it can find. Over the past grow fast. several years, it has had its hand in some We rotate projects every few months, of Capital One’s most transformative and in two years I’ve experienced half a shifts. dozen types of work and management When I joined the following fall, my styles. Within the small and close-knit first project was for the Small Business group, I’ve found coaches, mentors, and Bank. The leadership was considering amazing friends. There is no shortage of building a completely digital checking things to do, and at every turn, I have account for small business owners. No found opportunities to take on more branch, no nothing. Would anyone responsibility, develop new skills, and want such a thing? make things a little better than I found It was on this project that I realized them – in short, to matter. the difference between external consulting and internal strategy. We began with customer research and quickly discovered that the question we had been asked was much too small. Yes, people wanted such a thing, but also people were very unhappy with the way banking worked today. For a small business owner, piecing together a complete picture of their finances was often incredibly painful. The question
TECHNOLOGY: GO WEST
WELCOME TO OCS
DAVID FETTERMAN ‘03 ENGINEERING MANAGER, FACEBOOK
The San Francisco Design Center, when empty, looks like a four story, hundredthousand square foot airplane hangar with carpet. Over four days in May of 2007, we transformed this into a cacophony of spot lighting, backlit dividers, and dozens of luminescent screens, pulsating with dance music and the bustle of a thousand jostling people from the city, the area, the world. In all respects, this looked like a rave, and on any other day in San Francisco, it could have been. But as I stood ready to speak about what the young Facebook was about to unleash on the developer, venture capital, and media throng standing, sitting, and hanging off the walls in front of me, my heart raced anyway. That’s why when the lights went down and the microphone kicked in, I just started sprinting. Back and forth across the room, like a mad country preacher I testified about how the project I founded at twenty-five alone on a late night a year before, the Facebook Platform, was going to change their lives forever. Broken repeatedly by spontaneous, thundering applause, I shouted my twenty-minute thesis defense, but I received no doctorate. I was simply a software engineer, and my
thesis was that engineers, using these tools, could work for themselves and build their own dream. Over the next two years, a five hundred million dollar economy of social applications created by thousands of companies sprang up. I think I passed. I was no tenured professor or vice president or “made” partner. I hadn’t spent my early twenties paying my dues by teaching the undergrads a professor didn’t have time for, or making PowerPoint decks for the managing director, or climbing my way through a nine-level hierarchy in some giant company to become an “architect” so someone would listen. These builders of Silicon Valley didn’t care. They didn’t care I went to Harvard, or even that I graduated high school. They cared about the idea, the fact that we made it real, and that it would change the way software was written on the Internet. This is what Silicon Valley is about. But beware - Silicon Valley turns Harvard on its head. You’re at Harvard for two reasons. One - you have drive. You are good at pleasing your elders down a straight and narrow path. You ace standardized tests, you write flawless five paragraph essays, and you can do exactly what your teachers specify to earn that coveted A, riding straight to the right of the number line, to Eastern terminus of that railroad - success! You can take that train in first class for the rest of your life. You know where it’s going to end managing director, tenured lecturer, sixfigure boss man, Chief Financial Officer. I’m sure your superiors will appreciate your dedication. But let us not forget the admissions committee looked at your essay too. And I’ll bet you didn’t write about your achievements, or about how well you did your schoolwork. You wrote about your passion, that human talent or service or
desire that made you special. Not what you feel the pull to BE, but what you feel the pull to DO. And your life epic will be the story of what you do. If you are in software, Silicon Valley is the place where you can write that epic unconstrained, because you are the person the startups and small companies are looking for. The defenders of value are important - the managers, the lawyers, the financial people. But it is the creators of value who wield the power the engineers, the designers, the product thinkers. It is your ideas from late-night bull sessions and later-night prototyping that become features and products and industries, not the sludge emerging from endless top-down specifications and board meetings. And the role doesn’t define you here - I’ve been an engineer, a manager, a mentor, a recruiter, a speaker and writer, an evangelist, a leader. I now run Facebook Mobile using all of these tools, digging deep into that drive and that passion, not to be the best I can be, but to DO the best I can DO. It was up to me to make my ideas a success, and I’ve learned more quickly here at Facebook than I did anywhere else. Silicon Valley is intense. This probably is the densest concentration of driven and intelligent people anywhere, including New York, DC, and Cambridge’s on both sides of the pond. You can’t coast on Harvard here. There are Berkeley students and Stanford students and complete dropouts who emerge already practiced in building products and founding companies. But you have the skill, the drive, and the passion to truly test yourself and write your epic here. If you want to get somewhere amazing with your time on this planet, don’t just ride that easy train to the right. Go west, young (wo)man. I’ll see you here.
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