Informational Interviews Benefit All

The other week I met with a former colleague and her daughter over dinner. We were discussing her future. She was interested possibly in a marketing career, but definitely doing something to help others.

She was a confident young woman in her final year of college. She didn’t hesitate to ask probing, but respectful, questions about my career. And she asked for advice.

It was a great way to spend a few hours. I enjoy helping others start their careers because, even though it’s been many, many years, I still remember attempting to navigate those early years on my own.

If you ever have the opportunity to participate in an informational interview, I highly recommend it. Usually, the student will come to you through a friend. It might be their son or daughter, or the son or daughter of a friend of a friend. It doesn’t matter how they reach you; it does matter that they reached out.

I offered to review the young woman’s resume, and she promptly sent it that weekend. She also connected with me on LinkedIn. Both smart moves because it demonstrated follow-through. In reviewing her resume, I realized, I had not looked at mine in a few years, so I tweaked it a bit. It’s always good to keep the resume fresh. I also updated my LinkedIn account.

This young woman had reached out to me to network, and I realized I had not been networking as consistently as I should. I immediately scheduled a few coffees and lunches so that I could reconnect with professional peers.

In sharing my career highlights, I recalled what is important to me. When I returned home, I looked at all my activities, and reviewed them. The ones that were moving me in the direction I want to go with my career, I kept. The ones that were an extra, I decided to stop doing so I’d have more times for the critical ones, and also more time for relaxation.

Sometimes the best advice is the advice we give others.

One thought on “Informational Interviews Benefit All

  1. Tammy Poole says:

    I’ve mentored some University of Georgia students studying for the Accredited in Public Relations exam. Thoroughly enjoyed the mentoring relationships!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.