Informational Interviewing for Beginners

Posted on March 28, 2014 with No Comments

Two people participating in an informational interview

Not sure how to learn about potential career fields?
Start setting up informational interviews!

What are informational interviews?
They are formal conversations you set up with people who are in one of your fields of interest. During these meetings, you will have the opportunity to ask a professional questions about their job and their career, and gain insights into their industry. You can use informational interviews as a tool to explore many different careers!

How should you go about setting an informational interview up?

1. Identify people who have exciting jobs!

  • Ask parents, friends, professors, and others for people who are in jobs you are considering.
  • Use LinkedIn to network and find people who you might want to talk to. A good group to join is “UVM Career Connection.” This is a group that gathers members of the UVM community around career development.

2. Schedule the interview

  • You can use e-mail, LinkedIn, or the phone to connect with the person you’d like to have participate in an informational interview.

3. Prepare for the interview

  • Make sure to research the person’s company and field so you can tailor your questions and your conversation in order to make the most out of the time you two have.

Once you are at the interview, try to relax and enjoy the conversation. Be ready to ask questions and take notes. However, be sure not to ask for a job during the interview. Remember this should not be a stressful meeting. It should be a way for you to obtain occupational information and further your career exploration.

After your interview, be sure to send thank you notes within a day or two.

To learn more about any of these tips and find examples of communications to professionals of interest and sample questions to ask, visit the Career Center website.

~Lauren – Career Peer Mentor

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