Career Management

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Phase 2, Step 6 - Research Industries of Interest

By conducting in-depth research on your career interests, you are setting yourself up for success by showcasing your knowledge and speaking intelligently about the current trends in your field(s) of interest.

This step is about surveying what is happening in the global business environment, in your geographical area, in the MBA marketplace in general and in the industries that interest you. What are the trends? What interests you? Having global knowledge gives you a framework for identifying opportunities. It gives you knowledge to share with your network and create
win-win informationals. It also helps you identify pertinent questions and makes you a more appealing job candidate. Knowing what is out there helps you figure out where you belong and where you can be most successful. While this step must be started first, it should be considered something that is ongoing during a job search and should be continued throughout your career advancement to stay on top of trends and identify opportunities. You have finished this step when you can clearly articulate the trends that are affecting your industry and environment and how they affect your career goals. This is also the information that you will use to show how you can add value to an employer in interviews.

Deliverable for GSM5108: Research at least one industry (i.e. technology, healthcare, energy, outdoor/sportswear, etc…) in which you are interested.  Draft a list of questions you have about this industry.  Meet with three 2nd year students who had internships in this industry and ask them about their experiences.  Identify and add 5 people who appear to be knowledgeable in this industry to your “Network Contacts” excel sheet.  If you are interested in more than one industry, make a list of 2-3 people per area of interest. Write a summary analysis of what you have learned about this industry of interest from your online research and from your informational meetings with 2nd year students.

Questions to ask yourself:

  1. What are major trends that are affecting the global business environment?
  2. How is your country/region/state/city adapting and developing its value proposition?
  3. How are these trends affecting required competencies in my industry and geographic location?
  4. What are some HOT TOPICS that I should know about?
  5. What are some possible opportunities for MBA’s?
  6. Which opportunities do I find most interesting?


Going Deeper:

  • Read business related materials: Business Week, The Economist, Wall Street Journal, The Business Journal in your area, New York Times. Consider ordering and reading a year's worth of articles of interest.
  • Identify websites and professional associations that provide business material in industries of interest to you. Consider subscribing to RSS feeds or daily/weekly news updates. Check resources section on the Career website for ideas.
  • Check out the Oregon Business Plan and read through ‘industry clusters’ represented in Oregon. If you’re looking outside of Oregon, identify a similar resource for your geography and read about the industries. The idea is that if you are interested in technology – OR, WA & CA are great places to be. If you’re interested in entertainment – New York and LA would have more job opportunities.
  • Identify current business books and Harvard Business Review Articles – ask your professors what you should be reading.
  • Schedule meetings with 3 second year students who worked in your industries of interest.

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