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Fridays from the Frontline: Recruiting for a Non-Traditional Industry at Anderson

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While finance, consulting and technology tend to dominate business school employment stats, the recruiting landscape can, in fact, support a variety of goals—real estate, energy, sports business, non-profit and more.  The MBA is a versatile degree, empowering business school students to blaze brighter professional trails.

Current UCLA Anderson student Tim Maleski ’20 opted to pursue an MBA to give himself a leg up in the lucrative, but unconventional, field of sports business. Maleski took to the Anderson blog to unpack how to find a job along the professional road less traveled.

The following piece has been republished in its entirety from its original source, the UCLA Anderson Blog.

Student Perspectives: Recruiting for a Non-Traditional Industry at Anderson

by Tim Maleski ’20

Let me start by saying that everyone’s recruiting experience at Anderson is unique. No matter what industry you are recruiting for, there is no step-by-step guide to tell you exactly what you need to do and how to do it to get the ideal internship for you. You may learn the hard way that there can be plenty of bumps in the road. But, no matter what, you will find an internship (trust me – that statement is always a reassuring thought when you walk into another stressful interview).

At Anderson, students will be recruiting for anything and everything you can imagine. From the standard consulting and banking roles, to start-ups of every shape and size. For those that are not recruiting for a traditional industry (banking/finance, consulting, tech), I have provided a few steps that will hopefully help you land that dream internship or job. I came to Anderson to pursue a career in sports business, and these tips were something I immediately learned I needed in order to find success recruiting in a non-traditional industry.

1) Network, Network, Network!

If I didn’t make myself clear by now, just know that you need to network as much as you possibly can. More often than not, students in these industries will find their internship or job because they talked to someone, who put them in touch with the right person, who got them the position. While at first that may sound a bit intimidating, just know that almost everyone will take the time to chat with you. People love talking about their experiences and their careers, so use that to your advantage. Meet as many people as you can and make sure your name is on the top of their minds when job opportunities arise.

Career Night. Photo by Tim Maleski.

2) Be open to every opportunity

Now, this isn’t to say you should be joining every single club and attending every single company presentation. But what you should do is be open to trying things that can potentially get you ahead and position you for that internship you want. Take that academic internship, even if it is unpaid and seems like it will require time you don’t think you have, because it will look great on your resume. Attend a coffee chat with a recruiter at your top company, even though you have way more homework than you even want to think about. Attend a workshop to learn how to write code, even if it means missing Taco Tuesday at Cabo Cantina. The key to recruiting for a non-traditional industry is to do everything you can to make yourself stand out from your peers, which can, at times, mean making sacrifices in other areas. The extra efforts you make to open new doors and become more well-rounded can potentially be the reason you get that prized internship over your classmates.

3) Whatever happens, don’t get discouraged

One of the things about non-traditional recruiting is that you may find your internship months after your classmates. And guess what? That’s completely normal. Many industries have “just-in-time” recruiting, where companies won’t post positions until March, April, and even May. So, when your roommate comes home with a consulting offer, don’t let it get you down. Stick to your plan and continue to recruit for your internship. Just because you don’t have an offer right away doesn’t mean that your efforts are going unnoticed. The biggest key is making sure you don’t give up on your search and that you don’t get discouraged just because your industry recruits a bit later than other industries.

4) Use all your resources

This piece of information may be the most useful of all. You will have so many resources available to you that often it can seem overwhelming. Everyone at Anderson is here to help you, but you will only know that if you fully take advantage of them. Second years are happy to sit down and tell you all about their internships and how they got the position. Often times, they will even pass along your resume to the right person, which just might be the break you need. Talk to your advisor. They have connections all over the place and are happy to give you ideas or people to reach out to and connect. And don’t forget about all the successful Anderson alumni. Alumni love to help current students who are sitting in the same position that the alums were in a few years ago. Finally, utilize the fact that you are once again a student. There is something about having a “.edu” email address that makes people willing to talk to you now. Use that to your advantage. Cold connect with people on LinkedIn. It sounds crazy, but people you may have no connections with will be willing to chat with you. All it takes is the initiative to send that first message.

While it may seem daunting, it can be done. You will find that job you’ve always wanted,  but you must be willing to make that extra effort and put in the time. At the end of your two years at Anderson, when you walk out with the job you’ve always wanted, it will all be worth it!

About Tim Maleski
Undergraduate Studies: B.S. Chemical Engineering, Minor in Business Management — Case Western Reserve University
Pre-MBA: Lead Pricing Analyst — Liquidity Services and  Process Engineer — Occidental Chemical Corporation
MBA Summer Internship: Analytics — Nike, Inc.
Post-MBA Goals: Sports Business

Jonathan Pfeffer
Jonathan Pfeffer joined the Clear Admit and MetroMBA teams in 2015 after spending several years as an arts/culture writer, editor, and radio producer. In addition to his role as Contributing Writer at MetroMBA and Contributing Editor at Clear Admit, he was also a co-founder of the Clear Admit MBA Admissions Podcast. He holds a BA in Film/Video, Ethnomusicology, and Media Studies from Oberlin College.