- Start the interview off by introducing yourself. Include your name and other relevant background information, such as school and/or workplace and title. If you have an idea what your future plans or interests are, feel free to share them.
- Thank the person for taking the time to talk to you. Explain what it is that you are hoping to learn from them today.
“Thank you for taking the time to talk to me today. I am hoping to learn more about your job, what your typical day looks like, the job tasks you enjoy, and information about the company.”
- If you are meeting in a virtual format (or in person), you can ask for permission to record your conversation. This way, you can focus on the conversation and can go back later to review and take notes. It is okay to take notes, but let the individual know you will be doing so.
“Would it be okay if I record our Zoom call? I’d like to be able to review our conversation later.”
- Remember to respect the employee’s time and keep the interview under 30 minutes. Questions to consider asking:
- How did you get your start in this field?
- What are the duties performed during a typical day or week?
- Do you have a set routine? How much variety is there on a day-to-day basis?
- What work tasks do you enjoy the most?
- What work task is your least favorite?
- What makes your job unique?
- How would you describe the work culture?
- What projects are you working on right now?
- How much do you work with others? Do you work primarily with coworkers or with customers or clients?
- What is something that few people know about this job?
- What type of training did you need for this job? How did you get the training?
- What skills are you able to use in this job?
- Before you close out the interview, it is a good idea to ask the employee if there is another individual that they would recommend you contacting based on your career interests. This is a good opportunity to build your network. If they recommend a name to you, ask for that person’s phone or email.
- At the end of the informational interview, thank the individual for their time. Ask for their contact information. Consider saving this and any other contact information to a digital format such as a word document or online form so that you can access it in the future.
“Thank you so much for your time today. Would you mind sharing your email address or phone number with me?”