In an online article titled, “Informational Interviewing”, Carole Martin gave some useful tips for students, and other adults, who are looking to conduct an informational interview. Here’s what she said:
Identify the Information You Want- basically, this means know what you’re looking for from the company, the person that you’re interviewing, and in your career in general!
Make a List of People You Know- this can help you to see what areas the people that you know work in. For example, writing this list my help you remember that your cousin’s husband is a pilot, and coincidentally, that’s the exact position you are looking for. From there, you can ask questions regarding job qualifications and even what companies he recommends talking to!
Make the Appointment- This should be a 15-30 minute interview with the person, regarding what he or she does!
Plan an Agenda for the Session- Martin talks about preparing questions that give you the information you’re looking for, meaning you shouldn’t be talking about pilots if you’re doing an informational interview with an accountant! You want to make sure to ask the right questions!
Conduct Yourself as a Professional- This cannot be said enough, even though you it’s just an informational interview, you should be conducting yourself as if you are on a BIG job interview!
Show Interest- Martin says, “A little flattery goes a long way”. Make sure that you know who you’re talking to and their position within an organization.
Be Prepared to Answer Questions About What You’re Looking For- have a short personal statement ready, because though it is an informational interview, the person probably wants to know about your job search and what direction you want to go in, in regards to your career!
Get Names- Other contacts in the field can not only help you get more informational interviews, but are useful for networking and can hopefully allow for you to be remembered when a position becomes available!
Send Thank- You and Follow-Up Letters- Writing a note, or at least an email, can help the person that you interviewed with remember you even more, and help them show that you were really grateful for the information that he or she provided!
Take Advantage of Any Referrals You Receive- You will have to take risks to get closer to your dream job, according to Martin, and reaching out to a professional that you do not know can be considered one of those risks. These referrals may lead to a potential job interview, which is the ultimate goal!
To read more about Carole Martin’s article follow this link: