Seth Godin has taken an interesting look at career fairs and comes to the conclusion that good jobs and the best employees won’t be found there. It’s a race to mediocrity:
By the time a job opening hits the career fair, it’s a job you don’t want. And by the time a job seeker is walking down the aisles, standardized resume in hand, it might be too late for her to find a job that’s worthy of her.
I don’t think this is Seth’s best advice. Sure, you may land a better job (or find a better employee) through different means, but there are many awesome prospective employees who simply are not aware of the opportunities that exist for them. If they take a job found through a job fair and really are awesome, they’ll likely move quickly into better jobs within the company that take advantage of their full set of skills.
Looking at Seth’s advice, he makes it sound like your first job will also be your last, which is absolutely not the case. I’m more disturbed by people who hold out for the perfect job than those who take a job and make the most of it. The latter benefit from experience, seniority, and an income. That’s not a bad position to be in.