Informational meetings are a method of gathering advice, information and referrals. You meet with a new or current contact for a brief period of time, usually about 15 to 20 minutes, and ask them questions about their profession, company and industry. You ask the questions with the intent to learn. It is not a job interview.
Who do I want to talk to?
- People knowledgeable about your field/job/industry
- People doing the job
- People who manage the job
- Recruiters / HR professionals that hire for the job
How do I make contact?
- Former colleagues
- Meetups/Association meetings
- Friends of friends
Here is a sample script for asking for an informational meeting (additional scripts below):
- Contact: Hello, Philip Lopez speaking.
- Job Seeker: Hi Philip this is Will Doyle. Michelle Michaels, a mutual friend suggested I contact you since I am currently researching a career switch to the high tech industry. Do you have a minute?
- Contact: Sure, how can I help you?
- Job Seeker: Let me explain why I am calling. My background is in marketing at a local electronics company. I am gathering information to assist me in determining the next direction for my career and talking to leaders in the field. Do you think you could help me with some advice?
- Contact: I am very busy with work and all, what do you need?
- Job Seeker: I understand that time is tight. I have a few questions about marketing career trends and the nature of the current job market. Could we meet for 15 - 20 minutes sometime during the next two weeks to discuss your thoughts?