Bernie Sapp ’92 and Ed Svoboda ’91 returned to Illinois State University to talk to Dr. Nancy Lind’s Professional Development students about highly successful interview techniques and the factors that hiring managers look for in making their hiring decisions. They both agreed that two key factors are open communication and trust. They explained that much work today is done in teams and the only way that teams can be successful is to be open and honest with each other about problems, challenges and solutions.

They also talked about how emotional intelligence is becoming increasingly important as it is critical to be able to “read a room” and know how your actions and words are being understood by others. Listening is an equally important skill that students need to bring to the workplace.

Another common theme is that it is OK to make mistakes as long as you pick yourself back up and persevere. They both talked about times when their desires did not pan out but, how down the road, they found something better by always being open to new directions. They encouraged the students to “follow their dreams.”