An informational interview is an informal conversation you can have
with someone working in an area of interest to you. It is an effective research tool and is best done after preliminary online research. It is not a job interview, and the objective is not to find job openings.
You may feel awkward reaching out to people you don’t know. However, most people actually enjoy taking a few moments out of their day to reflect on their professional life and give advice to someone with an interest in their field.
BENEFITS OF INFORMATIONAL INTERVIEW
INFORMATIONAL INTERVIEW PROCESS
RESEARCH CAREER FIELDS
• What do I like to do?
• What are my strengths and weaknesses?
• What are some careers that I want to explore?
IDENTIFY PEOPLE TO INTERVIEW
PREPARE FOR THE INTERVIEW
In contacting a professional to interview, be sure to respect his or her time. When you place the initial call, ask them if he or she has time to talk. Be sure to have a “sound bite” prepared to introduce yourself and explain why you are contacting them. If you were referred by someone, be sure to use that person’s name. It is recommended to start with a phone call.
» Arranging the Interview
CONDUCT THE INFORMATIONAL INTERVIEW
If possible, try to meet the person at his or her office so that you can get a tour and learn more about the work environment. Because you are spending valuable time and gathering information from the person, it is proper etiquette to treat the person to coffee or lunch. While ideally you will meet in person, in some situations you might conduct the interview on the phone. Keep these tips in mind during the interview:
OW-UPImmediately following the interview, record the information you gathered. Be sure to send a thank you note to your contact within 24 hours of the interview. Keep the contacts you have met with posted on your progress. The most effective interviewers maintain a relationship with these contacts.
» Thank You Notes & Follow-Up
COW CREEK OPPORTUNITIES for Informational Interviews
© 2020 COW CREEK BAND OF UMPQUA TRIBE OF INDIANS. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED