Information Interviews are a valuable source of occupational information. Directed by your interview questions, an informational interview relays firsthand experiences and impressions of someone in an occupation. The interview does not have to be highly structured, but rather it should be more of an informal conversation. Building strong relationships with career contacts is the first step of networking with people in the field in which you are interested in pursuing a career.
Choose a manager working within the business environment you are interested in to interview. Examples may include such roles at HR Manager for a high-tech company, Marketing Manager in an electric car factory, Regional Manager at a hospitality chain, to name a few.
Determine what questions you will ask ahead of time and take notes throughout the interview.
Write a 2-3 page summary describing what you gained from this experience. Additionally, answer the following two questions:
What did you find useful that you can apply to your future career path?
How will you incorporate this knowledge into your life?
Write a thank you note to the manager you interviewed.
Suggestions for questions to discuss during your informational interview:
What has been the managers career path to her current position? What companies has she worked for and what have her responsibilities been?
If she could change anything about her career path, what would it be?
What does she enjoy most about her current position and responsibilities? What does she enjoy least about her current position and responsibilities?
What aspects of her position are the most rewarding? What aspects of her position are the most frustrating?
What is the most challenging aspect of her position? What is she doing to overcome these challenges?
What current trends could have an impact on her business within the next 2-5 years? How is she planning for this?
How might the business change in the next 2-5 years? How is she planning for this?
What is the critical challenge ahead for her particular segment of the industry?
What advise can she offer you as you are entering the business environment today?