Sep 28, 2018 - 03:49 PM
You prepare for an informational interview by researching the person you want an informational interview with, as well as the company they’re at, and the industry you’re aiming to work in. Informational interviews (and networking in general) are the best ways to launch an effective job search. Many open positions are not found online so the ideal way to uncover an opportunity is by engaging with people you know, and by participating in networking both in person and via online channels like LinkedIn.
To prepare for an informational interview, research, research, research (!) the company and the person with whom you will be meeting. Generally, all of this is easy to accomplish via LinkedIn, the company’s official website, and perhaps a few current news stories about the company or industry. Make sure you prepare some good questions to ask about the industry, company culture, and what they enjoy about the company and their role overall. People like to talk about themselves, so specific questions about how the person got into their field, as well as their specific role, are good to ask.
You will have an opportunity to explain what you are looking for. Make it short and sweet—have your 30-second elevator pitch down pat! Ask for advice about the industry and company overall. Be prepared going into the informational interview. The person you’re interviewing is likely giving up valuable time to help you. Ensure your questions are compelling. At the end of the chat, ask if you can reach out periodically to see if any employment opportunities at the company arise, and then stay in touch! Your next role could be the one that started with an informational interview.
Aug 21, 2018 - 09:59 PM
Spending time getting ready before your interview can ensure you get the most out of the meeting and make the best possible impression on a potential employer or colleague. Because you are the one initiating the meeting, you should lead the conversation. Create a list of detailed questions about the company, work environment, position, and/or industry. This isn't the time for vague, generalized questions. You want to learn everything you can about the specifics of the job you want.
It's best to structure your list of questions into categories. This level of organization can help the conversation go smoothly and impress the person you're meeting with. Use a balance of questions about both the company and the individual. Follow a comprehensive guide to make sure you're ready to rock your informational interview.