find a job using informational interviews
Post on 18-Oct-2014
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DESCRIPTIONWe're all told that the most important thing we can do to find a job is to "network," but how do you actually do it? That's where the "Informational Interview" comes in. This presentation shows you how to request "coffee meetings" with impressive people in your industry. Learn what questions you should ask, and what to say during your informational interviews. Informational interviews helped me transition careers while moving from Philly to New York, and I wanted to share what I learned along the way. Feel free to reach out to me with questions/comments. mitch [at] findyourfirstrealjob [dot] com Check out more presentations/videos like this at findyourfirstrealjob.com
Ralph Waldo Emerson
That which we persist in doing becomes easier to do, not that the nature of the thing has changed but that our power to do has increased.
1. How Do I Meet Decision Makers?
2. Finding People to Interview
3. Requesting an Interview
4. Preparing for the Interview
5. Following Up
HOW DO I MEET DECISION MAKERS?
Connecting with the right people
to jump-start your career
"It's not what you know, it's who you know.
"Network, network, network.
Networking is what led to my first job
"Utilize networks because it's very difficult to have your resume selected from the hundreds of others.
We all know that best way to get a job is by networking
But, what does that even mean?
Networking is about building healthy relationships with professionals in the industry you want to work in
I didnt go to an Ivy League school
My family doesnt have any contacts
I realized that job fairs are just a bunch of other people who are looking for jobs
BUT I DONT KNOW ANYBODY
Because we dont know how to network we revert to doing something easy: tweaking our resumes
So how do you connect with impressive people when you dont know where to begin?
WHAT IS AN INFORMATIONAL INTERVIEW?
An informational interview is an interview that you request with a professional whom you admire
In the interview, you ask them questions to find out if their career path is something you would like to pursue
An added bonus is you get to start building your network
An informational interview is not a job request
You should never ask for a job during an informational interview, because that is not the purpose of the meeting
THE PURPOSE OF
AN INFORMATIONAL INTERVIEW
1. Learn about the industry they work in
2. Find out if their career path is something you would enjoy
3. Start building your network
Youre trying to impress someone
They have something you want
Youre excited and nervous
No one likes the creepy guy who goes from girl to girl at a part just trying to get some
Dont be the creepy guy while youre doing informational interviews
Show genuine interest in the person
Building strong relationships will do more for your career than one night stands
Informational interviews are a simple and powerful way to begin building your network
The relationships you form while conducting informational interviews can help you for the rest of your career
best people to connect with
WHO SHOULD YOU INTERVIEW?
Aim to find Decision Makers
People who have been in the industry for at least a few years and have a say in who is hired at the company they work with
People who you want to be in 5, 10, 20 years
WHO YOU SHOULD NOT INTERVIEW
You want to begin talking with people with experience, so they can tell you the good and the bad of the industry
They should have the ability to hire you if they want to, or at least have some say in the process
HOW DO YOU FIND THESE PEOPLE?
1. Use your existing network
3. The internet!
USING YOUR EXISTING NETWORK You may be fortunate enough to be connected with impressive people
Ask family and friends, professors, etc. if they know anyone in the the industries youve selected
Explain that you want to ask them about their career path
Ask for an introduction or get their contact info
USING LINKEDIN TO FIND PEOPLE If you dont have any connections or youve moved to a new area, LinkedIn might
be your best bet
People on LinkedIn are looking to network
You can search by industry, company or job title
Join industry groups to find contacts in your area and send them direct messages
Aim to get an email address if you can, otherwise InMail is the next best thing
USING THE INTERNET TO FIND PEOPLE
Look on social media, join industry groups, and follow blogs to find impressive people
Make a list of companies that are in the industry and research them on Google, make a note of key players within the companies
All you need to start is their name and their email address
Aim to compile a list of 10 people you would like to interview
Moving the job hunt out of your home and into the real world
Sir Francis Bacon
A wise man will make more opportunities than he finds.
REQUESTING AN INTERVIEW
1. Researching the person
2. Drafting the email
3. Sending it out and following up
RESEARCHING THE PERSON
The first step is to do some background research on the person
What companies have they worked for, where did they get their start?
Youre looking for an in; a way to connect with them in your email
The email you send out will form their first impression of you
Make sure it paints an accurate picture
#1 rule of networking = be genuine
1. Introduce yourself, explain how you found their information
2. Compliment them and their career
3. Ask if you can take take them to coffee, ending with a specific request
Double check everything before you send it out
WHAT TO EXPECT
If you send 10 emails, you may only get 1-2 responses at first
Over time you can tweak your emails to get the best response rates
If they dont reply to you within a week, send a follow up email
Introduce yourself again and attach your original email to the follow-up, so they dont have to dig for it
If they still dont reply, theyre probably too busy to meet with you, move on
PREPARING FOR THE INTERVIEW
Everything you need to know before your first Informational Interview
INFORMATIONAL INTERVIEW GOALS
1. Find out if this job/industry is something you want to do
2. Decide if this person is someone that you could use as a mentor
3. Get a referral (someone else to interview)
Preparing questions will help you find out if the job is something youd like to do
It will help you feel calm and confident during the interview
Being prepared is a sign of respect to the person you are interviewing
FORMING GOOD QUESTIONS
The questions you ask them should help you to answer your ultimate question: Is this career path something you want to do?
Use open-ended questions
Cannot be answered with a simple yes or a no
Focus your questions on the other person
QUESTION EXAMPLES How did you get to where you are
What made you decide to do ______?
What is your favorite part of your job?
What do you not like about your job?
How do people usually break into this industry?
What project are you working on now?
What does a typical day look like for you?
If you had to do it all over again, what would you differently?
What are your long-term goals? Or are you where you always wanted to be?
Pay attention to what triggers their interest, and what excites them
They may have a project they are working on that they are very passionate about
Dont be afraid to deviate from the questions you have prepared
At the end of the interview, ask for a referral
Before asking, make sure to thank them for everything they have shared with you
Thank you so much, Ive really learned a lot from you today and I think Im on the right path. Is there anyone you would recommend I talk to next about [INDUSTRY/CAREER PATH]?
FOLLOWING UP The day after your interview, thank them and follow-up via email
If they gave you any referrals, make sure to report on them
I reached out to [NAME], thanks again!
End with a simple request, to keep the relationship going
Would it be alright if I reach out to you again in the future about career advice? (Not very often, just when I really need it)
Always offer to pay, you requested the meeting
If they offer to pay, decline at first, but if they persist, dont make a big deal of it and accept their generosity
WHAT TO WEAR?
Informational interviews are casual, not a formal interview
Usually a simple button-up shirt and nice pants are just fine
Aim to match their level of dress
The best thing you can wear is confidence
Amy Cuddy: Your body language shapes who you are
(TED TALK) http://goo.gl/op8WfV
1. Find 10 people that you want to interview
2. Send out first 10 informational interview requests and meet with the people who respond
3. Follow up and thank the people you met with
4. Repeat steps 1-3 until youve met with 5-10 people
COMING UPChoosing Your Industry
In the next unit, you will compile all of the information you gained from your informational interviews and use it to evaluate career options. You will measure specific