Job hunting in 2023 was like finding your way through a crazy maze, especially for me—an international student without full-time experience and needing sponsorship. But hey, I stumbled upon some cool strategies I gained from MQM that totally flipped the job-hunting game! It’s not just about what I learned in the MQM program, but how I put those tricks into action during this wild job-hunting adventure.

So, let’s talk about the course Empirical Economic Analysis! Sounds fancy, right? It’s basically a deep dive into causality, which represents the relationship between cause and effect. There is an important concept I learned in that course—conditional probability. Think of it as predicting the chances of stuff happening based on certain conditions. Job hunting? It’s like a game where your chances aren’t random; they depend on what’s hot in the industry, the economy, and the skills you’ve got.

A New Way of Applying Classroom Learnings

The job market in 2023 was tough! I noticed interest rates going up, and it felt like tech companies were in chaos—layoffs and hiring freezes everywhere. Initially concerned, I shifted my perspective. Some industries thrived under those rates! So, I set sail for sectors with a better shot at success. Big banks, whose profits benefit from high interest, and the risk sector, which are in demand under this uncertain environment, were on my radar—I scored more interviews than ever before!

Five MQM students wearing, most wearing Santa hats, the photo is in a digital frame reading, "WinterFest 2022"
Me (far right) and my fantastic team members at Winter Fest, December 2022

Understanding the workings of conditional probability in the real world has been an absolute game-changer for me in devising the right strategies. A heartfelt thanks goes out to the Empirical Economic Analysis course for equipping me with this invaluable mode of thinking. It’s incredible how this concept has empowered me to navigate the complexities of the job market with a clearer perspective, making more informed decisions and charting a more strategic course in my pursuit of career opportunities.

Effective Networking in Any Job Market

In another course, Navigating Organization, I learned different influential approaches to making a larger impact within an organization. I applied two key strategies to ace my job search—relationship building and impact management.

For relationship building, a big focus was on investing in a relationship at an early stage and building solid relationships for the long run. For example, after connecting with senior professionals, I kept the conversation going with regular updates. Plus, I’m deliberate about connecting with previous interviewers who saw something in me and moved me forward—even if I may not get the offer in the end.

Their recognition of my potential has opened up a world of opportunities, expanding my network in incredible ways. In addition, those interviewers usually have worked for more than five years in that company, so they have the potential to fill the missing “structure hole” in my network within that company. That’s the golden nugget I took away from this course.

Men in the MQM Class of 2023 at a restaurant
Enjoying steaks and good company for a boy’s night, March 2023

Switching gears to impact management, it’s all about making your ideas stick in others’ brains! I created my own website to show my passion and ability and asked for advice from MQM career coach Michael Wong. My personal portfolio website helped me make a lasting impression in my conversations with hiring managers on LinkedIn, giving me that edge in the competitive advantage.

The MQM program became my pivotal factor in the 2023 job market. The practical strategies, from mastering probability to impactful networking and impact management skills, transformed my approach. Armed with these tools, I navigated market shifts, broadened my network, and left a mark on hiring managers. I accepted a position with BNY Mellon, and I’m looking forward to putting my MQM skills to work.