Big 4 Accounting - Networking & Communication Tricks & Tips

Oct 8, 2012 -

Networking Skills for the Big 4 Accounting Candidate

It's now October. For many college students, school has begun. For those of you who are seniors in college or 4th years, it's time to start paying attention to career fairs. Big 4 recruiters ramp up their recruiting efforts in the Fall. They are looking for their 1st year associates. Do you have what it takes to break into Big 4 Accounting

When they come on campus how do you network with them? What are some topics you can discuss or chat about with them?

Here are some useful conversation topics:
1) What do you like about your current job?
2) What are your career goals and interests?
3) Have you read any good books or magazines lately?
4) How do you spend your free time?
5) Have you seen any movies lately?
6) Do you like to travel? Where have you traveled recently?
7) Social Settings - Business Lunches/Dinners, Receptions, Parties


1) Always shake hands at the beginning and end of the conversation.

2) A firm grip is best. Avoid being too relaxed, but do not over do it by squeezing too hard.

3) If your palms get sweaty easily, carry a tissue to wipe your hand.


1) Do not arrive later than 30 minutes after the start time on the invitation. This is not a college party, it's not fashionable' to arrive late.

2) Avoid drinking alcohol in front of recruiters, clients, etc. You should never feel pressure to drink, but if you choose to join others and you are 21, limit yourself to one drink.


1) Name tags always are placed on the outer most piece of clothing on the right side. When shaking your hand, the other person will have direct sight of your name.

2) If you forget someone's name, you can sometimes "cover" by introducing a person you do know first; maybe the other person will say their name. Otherwise, apologize and ask politely before introducing the person to someone else.

Another tip you might you use is to have the person state his or her name again is simply ask what his or her name is. Then when they reply with their first name, say "oh I meant your last name".

Meetings - Interviews, Informational, Formal, Group Projects

Before the meeting 

1) When planning a meeting give advance notice of the time, date, and location.

2) When contacting the attendees be sure to include items to be discussed (an agenda). IF you are being invited to a meeting and are unclear contact the meeting planner

During a meeting 

Avoid interruptions of conversation, brainstorming or presentations if possible. Always apologize and wait for an appropriate time to interrupt.

After the meeting 

1) Send a follow-up email or print out of the minutes from the meeting with action items and synopsis of what was covered.

2) Thank all members for attending 
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