In this episode of Own Your Career, Rod discusses and answers questions on how to create the demand for the CEO of Me, Inc. in leveraging the "Informational Interview".
An Informational Interview is a meeting in which a potential job seeker seeks advice on their career, the industry, and the corporate culture of a potential future workplace; while an employed professional learns about the job seeker and judges their professional potential and fit to the corporate culture, so building their candidate pool for future hires.
In an informational interview, job seekers can be unemployed, or else employed and considering new options. They use the interview to gather information on the field and on specific companies that they might want to work at. They can find employment leads, and expand their professional network. The employed professional from whom the potential candidate seeks advice and information also learns about a new potential colleague or hire and builds their own network through the conversation.
This differs from a job interview because the conversation is not about hiring and not about a specific job. The potential candidate asks general questions about the nature of the company or the industry, and the "insider" learns his or her professional character at the same time. The information interview helps overcome a problem with most discussions in a recruiting/job-seeking process, where each side is hesitant to talk to the other because they are uncertain about whether they might be wasting their time with an unqualified candidate or unsuitable workplace. In contrast, "the informational interview provides an non-threatening forum" for discussion as the two sides learn about the other.
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