Have you ever heard of an informational interview before? It is pretty much exactly what it sounds like. This is a time that you devote to information gathering for a certain employer, a particular position, or all of the above. This typically can happen as you network. In other words, as you cultivate your professional relationships, you can set up informational interviews!
Informational interviews can be informal or formal. I have heard of some informational interviews happening spontaneously over a cup of coffee at a coffee shop; but I have also heard of informational interviews that “look and feel” more like a formal interview: dress professionally, bring your resume, go to their place of work, etc.
Many people do not take advantage of this opportunity, so most employers would be extremely impressed if you requested an informational interview. If you do, here are a few things to keep in mind:
- Make courteous initial contact.
- Ask for information…NOT a job. (If they want to offer you a position, they will)
- Face-to-face meetings are best!
- Don’t forget to thank them.
- Follow up and keep them informed of your progress.
If you want to learn more specifics about effective informational interviewing, feel free to reach out to Career Services. Good luck!
Ryan Mazon is a an alum of Florida State University where he completed his Master’s/Specialist’s degree in Career Counseling. He is the program manager for many majors including engineering programs and Homeland Security in the ERAU Daytona Beach, FL Career Services Office. Ryan has a background working with many different offices at Florida State before working for career services, including campus recreation, new student and family programs, and student disability services. He has a passion for serving students by meeting them where they are at and connecting them to the resources they need. On his free time, Ryan enjoys the beach, playing different instruments, and staying active outdoors.