Sebastian is a proud Nicaraguan American with a background in digital communication and multimedia journalism. He is well versed in multiple technology editing techniques and analytics softwares and also has a passion for film.
Having bounced around 6 different states Sebastian arrived in his new home of DC in February. He enjoys exploring the DMV area with his girlfriend along with hiking, watching movies, playing games, or even playing with his cat, Mamba.
Sebastian achieved his Bachelor’s degree from the University of South Florida in December 2022 and is ready to build his professional career and make his mark on the DC area.
We are excited to announce that Whitman Associates, Inc. was awarded the Spectrum award for Excellence in Client Satisfaction among Washington, D.C. recruiters by City Beat News!
Thank you to all of our incredible clients and candidates who have made this possible. WAI has proudly provided the DMV with stellar staffing services since 1972, and we are thrilled to be continuing that tradition today.
Bridget is a dedicated higher education, governance and administrative professional with over 20 years of experience. She is driven by a personal motto that “Leadership and service can co-exist.”
In her free time, she enjoys cultural activities, visiting local wineries, taking long drives, going to the beach and listening to live music. Anytime of the day she is first in line for a good laugh. However, after a lot of engagement, the introvert kicks in and it becomes vital that she enjoy a moment of solitude.
Bridget holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Organizational Management and is currently pursuing a graduate degree in Nonprofit Administration.
Have you ever found yourself wondering how to break into a new industry or where you can gain insights into a particular career path? Informational interviews can allow you to ask questions about a company or a career field before you formally apply. These meetings can unlock valuable knowledge, expand your professional network and accelerate your career growth.
Here’s everything you need to know about what informational interviews are, why you should request one and how to go about setting up and conducting these invaluable conversations.
What is an informational interview?
An informational interview is a one-on-one conversation between you and someone working in an industry, role or organization you’re interested in. The purpose of this informal meeting is to gather information, advice and insights from someone with firsthand experience. Informational interviews are not job interviews, so you won’t be asking questions about specific job openings or asking for a job directly. Instead, you’ll gain a deeper understanding of the industry and job category you are interested in, learn about potential career paths and build relationships that could lead to future opportunities.
Here are a few of the great benefits of requesting an informational interview:
Gain insider information
Informational interviews offer an opportunity to ask key questions and learn about the ins and outs of a particular role or industry from someone who’s “been there, done that.”
Expand your network
Establishing connections with professionals in your desired field can open doors to potential job opportunities, mentorships or referrals.
Improve your interview skills
These conversations can help you practice communicating effectively and confidently as a job seeker, which will prove useful during actual job interviews.
How to ask for an informational interview
Reaching out to professionals to ask for an informational interview can seem intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. LinkedIn, for example, is a career-focused networking space where questions about a person’s role or industry are incredibly common.
Think of it this way — a growth-oriented company is always looking for new talent and wants job seekers to show interest. If you find someone who loves what they do, they will probably also love talking about it and relish the chance to answer your questions. Here are some tips on how to ask for an informational interview.
Start by identifying professionals in your desired field, role or organization. LinkedIn is an excellent resource for this — you can search for people by job title, industry or company, and even filter by location or shared connections.
Once you’ve found potential informational interviewees, send them a connection request or message with your question. Be sure to personalize your request by mentioning shared connections or interests and explaining why you’re reaching out. Keep it brief and respectful.
Clearly state that you’re looking to conduct an informational interview and provide context about your career goals or interests. Let them know you value their time and are only seeking 20-30 minutes of their expertise.
Offer a range of dates and times when you request an informational interview, and be willing to accommodate the interviewee’s schedule. Be open to conducting the interview in person, over the phone or via video call.
I’m a communications student at Georgetown. I’m interested in event management after I graduate, and I’d love to hear more about your experience working with DC Event Planners. Do you have 20 minutes for a quick meet-up or phone call?
Some people will respectfully decline, but you may be surprised by how many people say yes.
Questions to ask during an informational interview
Now that you’ve successfully secured an informational interview, it’s time to prepare a list of thoughtful questions to ask. Here are some suggestions to get you started:
Can you describe a typical day in your role?
What do you enjoy most about your job, and what are the biggest challenges?
How did you get started in this industry, and what steps did you take to reach your current position?
What skills or qualifications are most important for success in this role or industry?
Can you recommend any resources (books, websites, professional associations) for someone looking to learn more about this field?
What career advice do you have for someone looking to break into this industry or transition into a similar role?
Are there any upcoming networking events or industry conferences you’d recommend attending?
Can you suggest other professionals I should speak with to gain further insights into this field?
Following up and thanking the interviewer
Once you’ve completed your informational interview and asked all of your key questions, it’s time to follow up. The follow-up is a crucial step in the informational interview process, as it helps solidify the relationship you’ve built with the interviewee and demonstrates your gratitude for their time and insights.
Send a thank-you note
Within 24 hours of the interview, send a personalized thank-you email or handwritten note to the interviewee. Express your appreciation for their time, reiterate what you found most valuable from the conversation and mention any next steps you plan to take based on their advice.
Connect on LinkedIn
If you haven’t already, add your informational interviewee on LinkedIn with a personalized connection request. This will help you stay in touch and keep up-to-date with their professional journey.
As you make progress in your career journey, don’t hesitate to share updates with the interviewee. They’ll likely be interested in hearing about how their advice has helped you, and it’s a great way to maintain the relationship.
Pay it forward
As your career progresses, be open to conducting informational interviews for others who may want to ask questions about your career path. Sharing your knowledge and experience can make a significant impact on someone else’s career journey.
Accelerate your success with Whitman Associates
Requesting an informational interview to ask your connection key questions is a powerful networking tool that can provide valuable insights into your desired career path, expand your professional network and hone your communication skills. By being proactive in requesting and conducting these interviews, you’ll be well on your way to unlocking new career opportunities and achieving your professional goals.
When you’re ready to further your career search, remember that Whitman Associates can help — saving you precious time and money on your journey. As a trusted partner in professional staffing since 1972, our knowledgeable and friendly team is dedicated to matching your unique skills and aspirations with the perfect opportunities. Send your resume to firstname.lastname@example.org to get started.
LinkedIn has become a necessity in today’s job market. It’s one of the first places employers will look to evaluate a candidate, and it remains one of the most powerful tools for job hunting, recruitment and networking. LinkedIn offers a wealth of opportunities to connect with like-minded professionals, build your personal brand and even find your dream job — but you have to know how to use it.
Your LinkedIn profile is your personal brand, your online resume and your virtual business card. This is where potential employers will come to learn more about you, so it’s important to put your best foot forward. Here are nine best practices that every job seeker should know.
1. Treat LinkedIn messaging like a professional email.
LinkedIn is not a platform for casual conversations or small talk. When you’re using your LinkedIn profile to communicate with potential employers or recruiters, it is best practice to treat your messaging as a professional email. Use proper grammar, punctuation and capitalization, and always be respectful and courteous.
If you message a recruiter, address them by their first name. In online culture, Mr. and Ms. sound overly formal. Instead, write a clear, concise message with a friendly tone.
2. If you are open to work, say so!
One of the most important features to use on LinkedIn when finding a job is the “Open to Work” setting. This lets recruiters know that you’re actively looking for a job. This is different from the #OpenToWork banner that many people overlay on their profile pictures. The setting is private and will only show your preference to recruiters, allowing you to make new connections without worrying about your current employer seeing your status.
3. List all locations you are open to work.
If you’re using LinkedIn to find a job in the D.C. area, one of the most important details you need to include is your location. However, you shouldn’t just list your current location, especially if you’re open to relocating for a job. It is best practice to add all the cities or regions where you would be willing to work to your LinkedIn profile. This will make it easier for employers to find you when they’re searching for candidates based on location.
4. Select whether you are willing to work remotely.
Remote work has become increasingly popular in recent years, and many job seekers are looking for opportunities that allow them to work from anywhere in the world. If you’re only interested in remote work, it is a good idea to select that setting on your LinkedIn profile. Keep in mind that, post-pandemic, many companies have adopted hybrid models of working or are back in the office full time. For instance, some companies may require one day per week in the office, or some companies may allow 100% remote work but require that you keep business hours in a certain time zone. If you’re open to hybrid options, our best job search advice is to list geographical locations and your preference to work remotely.
5. Use keywords.
Make sure you’re using keywords in your profile that are relevant to the job openings you’re applying for. For example, if your goal is to become a communications assistant, look at relevant job descriptions from several different companies. If you notice they all mention marketing, creativity and communication, your LinkedIn headline could read, “Creative Marketer with Communications Experience.” Recruiters often use LinkedIn’s search function to find candidates, so using relevant keywords in your profile can help you appear in their search results. If you’re using LinkedIn to find a job, this can increase your chances of being noticed by recruiters who are looking for someone with your specific skills and experience.
6. Keep your LinkedIn profile up to date.
Your LinkedIn profile is not a “set it and forget it” kind of thing. One of the most important LinkedIn best practices is to keep your profile up to date with your latest job experience, skills and achievements. Make sure your headline is clear and concise, and your summary accurately reflects who you are and what you can offer. Update your profile picture regularly, and make sure it’s a professional-looking photo.
7. Use an appropriate photo (no selfies!).
Speaking of photos, your LinkedIn profile picture is an essential part of your personal brand. It’s the first thing that potential employers will see when they come across your profile, so it’s important to make a good impression. It is best practice to ensure that your LinkedIn profile picture is a professional-looking headshot that accurately reflects who you are. If you have a portfolio website or other professional social media accounts, use the same profile picture on all of them. This will help any prospective employer connect the dots between your different online profilespresences.
8. Be selective.
Be selective about the job postings you apply to. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the sheer number of job categories and job postings on LinkedIn, but applying to every job you see isn’t the best approach. Instead, focus on the jobs that are the best fit for your skills and experience, and take the time to tailor your application materials to each position.
9. Be patient!
Finally, be patient. Even with all of these LinkedIn profile best practices in place, finding a job can take time, and it’s important to stay positive and persistent in your job search.
If you’re using LinkedIn to find a job in the D.C. area, don’t forget that it is also a networking platform. Don’t just use it to search for jobs; be sure to also connect with other professionals in your field. Join groups, engage in discussions and share articles or insights that showcase your expertise. Networking is a powerful tool that can help you get your foot in the door, and it’s essential to building your personal brand on LinkedIn. So keep networking, keep applying to jobs and keep your LinkedIn profile up to date. With time and effort, you’ll find the right job for you!
A LinkedIn profile is an incredibly powerful tool for job seekers — by following these best practices, you can increase your chances of being noticed by recruiters and finding your dream job.
Find Your Next Role with Whitman Associates
If you’re looking for additional support and guidance in your job search, we can help. Whitman Associates is a professional staffing agency serving the Washington D.C. area — we’ve been helping candidates find and secure their dream jobs since 1972!
Get started by emailing your resume to email@example.com. Our team of staffing experts will take the time to review your resume and connect you with job opportunities that match your skills and experience. We look forward to helping you take the next step forward in your career search.
Hyebin Kim has been working as an Executive Assistant through Whitman Associates since May of 2023.
She completed her Bachelor’s Degree of International Affairs with a concentration in Global Public Health at George Washington University. She currently resides in Arlington, Virginia, and is interested in pursuing a Master’s degree in the near future.
In her free time, she enjoys paddling boating, hiking and exploring the DMV area.
Hamilton College is where Andrew gained a lasting interest – the intersection of psychology and law. Following Andrew’s time at Hamilton, he relocated to the DMV area to begin a MA in Forensic Psychology at George Washington University.
Andrew completed his Masters in May and received the Academic Excellence in Forensic Psychology Award. While completing his final class, Andrew started a new role as the Intake and Office Assistant at a nonprofit legal clinic through Whitman Associates.
Andrew enjoys being outdoors and is looking forward to enjoying the summer before he begins law school at Georgetown in the fall!
After graduating from the George Washington University in May 2022, and a summer spent on the West Coast, Natalia Tecca returned to the DMV and started working as an Administrative and Database Assistant at a law firm through Whitman Associates in December of 2022.
While at GW, Natalia double majored in Psychology and Organizational Sciences with a minor in Criminal Justice and was awarded the Zeidner Prize for Undergraduate Excellence in Organizational Sciences. She has experience as an Employee Engagement Intern and volunteered as an Onboarding Assistant with the American Red Cross. She is also a math tutor for middle and high school students. In her free time she likes to spend time outdoors, going on walks or wandering around somewhere new. Natalia goes through phases of new artistic hobbies such as ceramics, painting, or embroidering and is currently learning how to crochet, typically accompanied by binge watching New Girl.
Isabelle Mack is a retired nonprofit professional who has worked in the nonprofit/philanthropic sector for more than 30 years and is dedicated to community service. She has received a number of community service awards that include the District of Columbia’s Ward 5 Council on Education, the President’s Award of Appreciation from the DC Congress of PTAs and the Outstanding Public Service Award to Public Schools from the Urban League (DC Chapter) as a result of her dedicated community service. She was a founding member of the Black Philanthropic Alliance that cultivated leadership and philanthropy in the African American Diaspora.
Ms. Mack is currently a notary public commissioned and bonded in the District of Columbia and a certified signing agent. Ms. Mack is also a former licensed realtor in the District of Columbia for over 10 years. Thus, she is quite familiar with all aspects of real estate sales and funding.
Ms. Mack is a native Washingtonian who enjoys hand dancing, which was declared the official dance of the District of Columbia. She is a second soprano and sings occasionally with the Senior Choir of the Shiloh Baptist Church.
Ms. Mack holds an Associate in Applied Science in Communications, Bachelor of Science in International Business with a minor in Human Resource Management and a Master of Science in Public Administration. She is a member of the National Notary Association and a member of the Alpha Chi National College Honor Society.
Charlize Grady started working for an engineering company through Whitman Associates in October of 2022. She is loving the thrill and learning she’s getting from her job. She finds the work both challenging and rewarding. Charlize is also happy to have a flexible work schedule that allows her to work from home and spend time with her family.
Charlize Grady is a dedicated immigrant from the Philippines who holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting Technology. She is a wife and mother to a three-year-old son. Charlize enjoys spending her free time at home watching movies with her family, and reading books. She is also a fan of the Golden State Warriors. Charlize has decided to re-enter the corporate world to build her career and make herself and her family proud of what she will accomplish as a woman.