Skill Level Intermediate
(rock music) - You've just scored an informational interview with someone at the very top of your dream employer list. Now what? Are you prepared? Well, you should be. This person's just agreed to give you a precious commodity here, her time. Don't make her regret that. Make a plan. And show up with some questions to ask so you don't look like a dang fool.
The first thing you'll wanna do is a little bit of homework. Start with her LinkedIn profile. Where has she worked? Where'd she go to college? What are her interests? After you dig a bit, prepare some questions keeping this top of mind, the purpose of an informational interview is to gather information. Period. Under no circumstance should you walk in and foist your resume on your interviewee. You're the interviewer.
Conduct it accordingly. Here are five great questions you can ask. Number one, how did you get into this field? And how'd you land the role that you're in? This is an important one because it shows that you're genuinely interested in her background, which will go a long way and by asking about her career path, you might uncover some hints on how to break into the company. Second question, what's the best part about working here? You can research that online until you're blue in the face.
But this is your shot at getting first hand perspective. Take full advantage. Alright, question three, what are the most challenging aspects of your job? This is particularly relevant if the person works in the same type of role that you're targeting. You'll be able to gauge if those challenges line up with your aspirations or if they fall short, in which case you'll know to steer clear. Question four, what skills do you think are most important for someone trying to break into this space? By asking this you'll not only learn what specific skills you need, you also might prompt the other person to say hey, tell me a little bit about your skills.
Or, do you have a resume I could take a look at? Yes, I know I just told you not to shove your resume at anyone but for sure bring it so you can share it if you're invited to. Now the last question I recommend that you ask at every informational interview is this. Based on our discussion, can you think of one or two other people I should chat with? This question is essential if you want to keep that momentum going and of course you want to keep that momentum going.
Keep in mind that just one of these interviews might not be the magic bullet but one meeting could spark a chain of introductions that'll help you dig further and meet other people. People who may pull out the stops to help you land your next job. - Thanks so much for meeting with me. I really appreciate your time, I know how valuable it is. - Yeah, it really is. - Yeah. (both laughing) - It just really is, my time is really valuable.