Advice » In the Workplace» Workplace Issues » Four Ways to Make Job Shadow Da ...
Four Ways to Make Job Shadow Day Work

Four Ways to Make Job Shadow Day Work

With National Job Shadow Day coming up, you may have been asked to have a student shadow you so he can learn more about your career, company and industry. If you're wondering how to be a proper host, check out these four tactics that will help you turn those few hours into a rewarding work experience for both of you.

Be Prepared

"Have a plan -- hour by hour," advises Jon Tirpak, engineering director for nonprofit consulting organization ATI and a frequent job shadow host.

A solid plan will save not only your sanity but also that of the student you're hosting. "The most widely expressed complaint we have heard from students in our externship program is that the host was not prepared for their arrival, and the students spent the day sitting in the host's office watching them work but not getting involved," says Julie Richardson, externship program coordinator for the Office of Career Services at Virginia Tech. "This can be avoided with a little preparation before the big day."

If possible, you might even want to ask the student to email you questions he'd like answered ahead of time. That way, you'll be prepared for what the student wants you to cover, says Richardson.

Think Conversation, Not Presentation

You'll have a much more satisfying experience, as will your student, if you can have a conversation instead of just giving a presentation. You'll get the chance to teach the student about careers -- and learn something yourself about a different generation.

"Students may become introverted in a new and different environment," says Ed Grocholski, a spokesman for the Job Shadow Coalition, the group behind National Job Shadow Day. "So as a [host], it's good if you can engage the student early by asking a lot of questions of them. Discussing their interests in depth, their plans for education and what careers they may be interested in can help open them up. Once a dialogue is going, then you can begin discussing your career and why you chose the line of work you're in."

Share Your Shadow with Colleagues

From a practical standpoint, sharing your student shadow with your coworkers lets you also share the responsibility for hosting him. But more importantly, the student will get a broader look at the organization, as well as its people and job functions.

If applicable, you can even arrange for the student to meet briefly with your company's college interns to gain a fellow student's perspective, says Richardson.

Give the Student Information to Take Home

Prepare an information packet for your student, including:

  • Data about your company, job and the broader field.

  • Literature on professional organizations associated with your industry.

  • A list of relevant books or Web sites.

As you compile this information, don't be surprised if you find information useful to your own career. Perhaps you'll discover an industry Web site that will help you with a key project. Or maybe the trade association you finally joined last year has a local chapter.

Your business card is another helpful addition to this information packet, says Richardson. The student may want to contact you again, even just to thank you for hosting him.

"Not everyone is willing to take time out of their hectic work schedule to help a student pursue his career aspirations," Richardson says. "You're helping someone determine which route his future will take. Even if he decides not to follow this current career course, you will have still helped him in making an important life decision."

Latest Jobs

All transmissions & Automotive
Posted: 05/24/2015
Cumming, GA, 30040
MGA Home Healthcare
Posted: 05/24/2015
Austin, TX, Austi
MGA Home Healthcare
Posted: 05/24/2015
Austin, TX
RemX Specialty Staffing
Posted: 05/24/2015
West Chester, DE
RemX Specialty Staffing
Posted: 05/24/2015
La Vergne, TN, 37086

Want more personalized results?  Update Your Profile


Monster Communities

Teaching Community
Where teachers meet and learn.
Create and connect.
Networking for the career-minded woman.
Nursing Link
Where nurses call the shots.
More Monster Communities

Monster Partners

Scholarships, financial aid and more ways to pay for school.
Find top campus and online degree programs.
Military portal for the US Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and Coast Guard.
Financial Aid
Scholarships & financial aid.
Staffing for Government Jobs
Staffing and hiring solutions for federal government agency jobs.
More Monster Partners

Job Hunt Strategy

Six Ways to Make a Recruiter Hate You
If you want to blow your chances with recruiters -- and, by extension, with the companies they work for -- here are six perfect ways to do so.

Resumes & Cover Letters

Rev Up Your Resume to Relocate
Hoping to relocate? Get the ball rolling on landing the right job in the right location with these expert resume and cover letter tips.


100 Potential Interview Questions
Interview questions can run the gamut. You probably won't face all 100 of these, but you should still be prepared to answer at least some of them.

Salary & Benefits

10 Questions to Ask When Negotiating Salary
Most of us aren't natural negotiators, but asking these 10 questions during salary negotiations can help you get everything you deserve.

Employee Sourcing

Alt text
November Monster Employment Index Grows 13% Year-Over-Year, Tenth Consecutive Month of Positive Annual Growth.

For Seekers

Campus and Online Degrees
Advance your career and earn more with an online degree.
Free Salary Wizard
What are you worth? Find out and negotiate a better salary.
Research Careers
Get information on jobs and career paths to help guide your choices
Questions & Answers
Find answers to all your career related questions -- powered by Yahoo! Answers
Resume Distribution Service
Our distribution service puts your resume right in the hands of recruiters.
Resume Writing Services
Our experts will craft a keyword-rich resume that stands out in the crowd.
More Career Resources

For Employers

Career Ad Network
Target your job posting to more candidates on thousands of websites.
Hire Right Background Checks
Explore our background check packages to improve the quality of your hires.
Hiring Home Page
Find the best candidates for your business with Monster hiring solutions.
Job Postings
Find the right solution for your hiring needs. Starting at $99.
Power Resume Search
Monster's new search technology precisely matches people with your jobs.
Resource Center
Find staffing insights, labor trends, HR best practices and more.
Target Post
Connect with skilled, hourly and administrative candidates for only $99.

Social Media

Jobs on Twitter
Find jobs in your area and industry.
Monster Careers
Tune into our career advice and discussions tackling a wide range of topics and industries.
Monster Corporate & PR
Stay up-to-date on the latest news. Get the 'Who', 'What', 'When', and 'Why' on all things Monster related.
Monster Customer Service
Got a Monster question? We've got the answer. Whether you're a job seeker or employer, we can help you find the answers you need.
Monster for Employers
Find advice on hiring.
Follow Us
Check out our many pages and stay connected with the latest industry news, events, career advice and job openings.

Other Links

Monster Company Profiles
Explore companies and get information to guide your career decisions.
Compare Salaries
See how your pay stacks up to others in your field.
iPhone Application
Download the Monster app for iPhone and iPod touch.
Monster Job Seeker Blog
Monster Job Seeker Blog.
Monster Thinking Blog
Monster's Recruitment Trends Blog.
Jobs & Career Resources
Search Jobs:
For Employers: Post Jobs | Search Resumes | Advertise
About Monster | Work for Monster | Advertise with Us | AdChoices | Partner with Us | Investor Relations | Social Media
Terms of Use | Privacy Center | Accessibility Center | Help | Security | Contact Us | Sitemap | Mobile
©2015 Monster - All Rights Reserved U.S. Patents No. 5,832,497; 7,599,930 B1; 7,827,125 and 7,836,060 MWW - Looking for Monster Cable? - V: 2015.8.0.34-208