Action Step 1 – Informational Interview

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Refer To Course Syllabus for Due Dates

  • In this assignment you will learn about your chosen career field from a professional who works in it. Additionally, you will need to understand how to align with a professional that you are interviewing. This includes not just following the three steps of alignment (Relationships, Understanding, Match), but also understanding how to spark the connection, control the conversation, and avoid any personality clashes so that you can grow this connection into a professional relationship.


    Related Lessons – This Action Step reinforces material from Lesson 4 (Chapter 2 – Parts 3 & 4 of “This is Who We Hire”)


    Prepare for the interview by reviewing the following information on Informational Interviews:


    • Informational Interview Handout – This document is provided by UCF Career Services. Most university career offices have produced similar documents that can be found by Googling “informational interview .pdf”
    • How to ask questions – this blog by Alex Groenendyk will help you understand how to effectively use “open questions” in your interview.
    • Informational Interview Steps – this blog by Lindsay Pollak will help you understand not only the structure of an effective informational interview, but how to put yours together effectively.

    Schedule a meeting with a professional in the field you researched in Part 6.

    Interviewee must have worked in a professional, full-time capacity for at least 5 years.

    During that time, Interviewee’s job must have encompassed one or more of the following duties:

    • Supervision of two or more people
    • Autonomy in determining operational strategy and execution (this can include business ownership)
    • Decision making authority over business unit strategy and execution
    • Responsibility for business unit budget and/or performance to established budgetary goals

    Prepare to meet with the individual and conduct an Informational Interview.

    Goals – What are you trying to learn in this interview?

    • Add to your research and solidify your decision of WHAT you want to do.
    • Understand what drives people in this position; this includes their goals and motivators.
    • Understand how you can align with people in this field.

    Content – What are you going to ask the interviewee?

    • Follow the instructions in the Informational Interview and Job Shadow pages in Webcourses.
    • Since this is your interview, you will need to develop a list of questions BEFORE meeting with the person.
    • Review their online profile (LinkedIn, company website) if possible relative to the goals stated above.
    • Develop a list of no less than TEN (10) open-ended questions; be prepared to ask follow up questions.

    Arrive at the predetermined location at least 10 minutes early. DO NOT BE LATE TO THIS MEETING!!

    Thank the person for meeting with you and explain that though you are a student and doing this activity for an assignment, your goal is to learn important information about your chosen career.


    Conduct your interview

    Use the Alignment recommendations from Lesson 3 and behavioral tips from Lesson 4.

    Ask open questions and take lots of notes. Follow up where appropriate.

    Close your meeting:

    • Thank the person for their time
    • Ask if they have any questions for you.
    • Reiterate that this was very helpful.
    • Ask if they knew of anyone else that would be helpful for you to meet.
    • Offer to help them if they ever need assistance with anything.

    Compile your notes and write a summary of your meeting

    Complete the form below to document your answers

  • What is the professional's name that you are interviewing?
  • What is their position within the company?
  • What is the name of the Company the professional works with?
  • What qualifications / experience does the professional have?
  • Date Format: MM slash DD slash YYYY
  • Do you feel like they “like and trust” you?
  • (be brief, just a couple sentences).
  • Explain which results are important.
  • After you click "Download My Work", the "Save and Continue Later" functionality will no longer be available. If you need to make a modification to your assignment after selecting "Download My Work", you will need to copy and paste the fields from the PDF produced back into the assignment form.

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