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Not hiring? Still ask for an informational interview

June 5, 2009

NotHiringFrom my past experience, I have learned, even if there are no available positions at a company you are interested in, still ask for an informational interview.

Last summer when I was applying for internships, I landed an interview with a non-profit company. I did not get the position, however, the person with whom I interviewed, really liked me. She went out of her way to connect me with a colleague  of hers who was also looking to hire an intern. Fortunately, I was hired for this other internship!

Since graduation, I have been setting up appointments for interviews. Not long ago, I had lunch with a woman who works in social media. While having lunch with her, she helped me get a better understanding of the field. Later that week, I also had an informational interview with a branding company. I learned a great deal from meeting with these public relations professionals regarding how their companies work as well as what I could offer to them or a similar company. This has helped me gain insight into how to present myself to stand out from others. Since graduation, I have learned a lot about my potential and I am better prepared to share that in an interview. Nothing has changed about me, I have just learned more about myself through these meetings and informational interviews.

So, even if there are no positions available, ask for an informational interview anyway. You will make connections, learn a bit more about the field you will be entering and feel more confident for future interviewing. Who knows? Perhaps if you made a really good impression, when a position does open up, they might even give you a call!

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