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Networking and Informational Interviews

The Benefits of Informational Interviewing

Informational interviewing may sound intimidating, but it is a useful tool if you are seeking employment, want to learn more about a field, and want to expand your network. Conducting an informational interview means that you reach out to and speak with professionals who are currently working in a career, industry, or environment that interests you.  You can then determine if that career would be a good match based on your values, skills, interests and abilities.  Generally, informational interviewing is a good option if you are looking for employment and want to learn more about a company, or if you are considering a career change.

Tips for Networking Success

Building a network of professional contacts can help you discover new employment opportunities as well as trends and best practices in your field. It is important to understand that networking is a multi-way street, where members of the network help each other. Remember:

  • You already have a great network through your life experience. Friends, family, neighbors, professors, and colleagues are all great sources of information. (You can also gain new contacts through informational interviews.)
  • Check with your individual school within the University of Hartford and join their LinkedIn Group.
  • Be prepared. Before contacting anyone, research the industry.
  • Be professional in all of your emails, phone calls, and in-person contacts.
  • When a new contact responds to you, get back to them quickly.
  • Send a thank you note to each person you speak with within 24-48 hours.

Why use Informational Interviewing / Networking?

  • Explore different career paths to assist you in your career planning
  • Find out about the skills, qualifications and education you need to pursue specific fields
  • Learn about job opportunities
  • Expand your base of professional contacts
  • Improve your interview skills