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Informational Interview

Know What You Want To Accomplish:

Informational Interviewing This is one of the easiest, most effective, and, unfortunately, most underused ways to learn about a career. What is an informational interview? It is asking someone about what they do. Think of it as relationship building. Make sure it is understand by yourself and the professional that this is not a job interview or a request for a job! The knowledge gained from an informational interview can help you determine which courses and qualifications are necessary for specific career paths, the types of job or companies best suited for you, etc. Informational interviewing can also aid your job search.

  • Discover jobs that are not publicly advertised
  • Expand your knowledge of the job market in the field you want to explore
  • Learn about how to make yourself a more qualified candidate
  • Build support for your job search

The primary objectives of informational interviewing are to:

  • Investigate a specific career field.
  • Uncover career options you never knew existed.
  • Assist in narrowing (or expanding) options.
  • Obtain advice on where your skills might be applied.
  • Learn about important issues in a career field.
  • Broaden your own network of contacts for future reference.

Be Prepared For the Interview:

Before meeting someone for an informational interview, you should:

  • Learn as much as you can about the organization.
  • Have your questions written down.
  • Learn about the career field in general.
  • Be yourself and relax. You are the interviewer, and this is not a job interview.
  • Keep your purpose in mind.

Use the Information You Obtain:

It is important to keep in mind that you are investigating a career and trying to establish a network at the same time. Therefore, all the protocol of a professional job search, as well as the curiosity of a diligent job seeker, should be followed.

  • Ask for the names of others you can contact for further information.
  • Keep the door open for further contact by asking if you could call again if you have any questions.
  • Take notes during the interview if this will help you later in your evaluation

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