Career Center

Informational Interview Sample Questions

Below are examples of potential questions which are meant to stimulate your thinking about the kind of feedback you are seeking when you hold informational interviews.  The questions you ask your new associates should be well thought out and tailored to your own career exploration concerns.

About the field:

1) What is your title and what other titles are commonly used in this field?
2) What is your background and how does it fit with this field?
3) What is the common trajectory for positions like yours?  Are there a lot of opportunities for advancement?
4) What are the skills and experiences most sought after when hiring in this field?
5) Please describe your typical good day.  And, your typical bad day?
6) What professional organizations and activities do you find most helpful in learning more about this field?
7) Which fields are related to this one?
8) What are the growth rates and current trends for this field?
9) What do you like most/least about this field?
10) What is the average salary range for this field?

About the organization:

1) Describe the overall “culture” of the organization.
2) Describe the collegial relationships within the organization.
3) What sets this organization apart from others in the field?
4) Who are the primary competitors of the organization?
5) Describe the organization’s structure.
6) How are candidates recruited?
7) What qualities make a candidate stand out?
8) What do you like best/least about working in this organization?
9) What opportunities exist for professional development?
10) How are employees evaluated?

In general:

1) What do you think is the most important factor when considering a career field or organization?
2) What factors have to be present in your work for it to be enjoyable?  How can you tell if these are present when interviewing for a job?
3) Besides informational interviewing, what else would you recommend I do to help with my career exploration process?  To whom else should I be speaking?
4) Where do you see your own career taking you in 10-15 years?
5) What do you know now that you wish you knew at the beginning of your career?

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