Informational Interviewing

Informational interviews are a great resource for job seekers who are having trouble finding work through traditional means. An informational interview is an informal interview where you meet with someone who is working in the industry or position that you would ideally like to find yourself in. A person with the job you want can tell you exactly what you need to do to get it. Use your networking tools to connect with a professional in your ideal industry, and ask them if they would be willing to meet for lunch or a brief meeting to answer some questions and possibly give you some advice. Read on for examples of some questions you could ask in an informational interview.

  1. How did you find your job?
  2. What kind of interview process did you go through for this position?
  3. What relevant experience did you have prior to starting this job?
  4. What are some of the key qualities you have that you feel are important to doing your job well?
  5. What are some things you have learned about your job that you did not know prior to starting it?
  6. What do you like most about your job?
  7. What do you like least about your job?
  8. Where do you see your career going from here?
  9. What advice do you have for someone looking to work in a similar position?
  10. Would you recommend this kind of work for someone with my background?
  11. Do you believe that I have the experience and qualifications necessary to get a similar position and do well in it?
  12. What would you suggest I do in order to increase my chances of landing this position?

While the answers to these questions could help you form a better plan of attack for your job search, they might also help you rethink your career plans. An informational interview could help you realize that what you thought was your dream job, might not actually be something you want to pursue. Also, you might realize that you don’t currently have the skills or experience necessary to land such a position, and maybe it is something you should wait to pursue further down the line. No matter the outcome, an informational interview can be incredibly helpful to job seekers. Whether you are looking for a job right now, or trying to plan out your future career, talking to someone who currently has your dream job could be extremely beneficial.