Ditch the resume, informational interviews will get you the job you want.

Here is a fun Monday question: Are you in your control of your career? ⠀
Are you defining what job you want, or are you letting job searches telling you what you want?⠀
Are you crossing off opportunities because the job description is telling you that you aren’t “qualified” for the position, or are you saying “I think I would be great for this, let’s see what happens.”⠀
I could go on, but you get the point. ⠀
When you wait around for a new opportunity, you are just doing that. Waiting. Waiting for something to “happen” to you. Let me tell you friends, things that are great just don’t happen to people. Those people have WORKED for that greatness. ⠀
So, I ask you again, are you in control of your career? Are you sitting on the sidelines hoping that something great will come of it, or are you grabbing the reins with both hands and going after what you want because you know you are the one in control here? ⠀
How can you take control this week? How can you work towards outcomes that YOU want?⠀
📸: @howlandrose

Informational interviews can help you with everything in your career.

-Need a new job? Who can you go meet with at that company you want to work at?

-Trying to figure out if you want to make a career change? Go talk to someone in that industry.

-Looking for a mentor? Hi, informational interviews.

-Hate networking in big crowds? Go on a bunch of informational interviews - woo hoo! You have a new network!

I think you get my point.

Learning how to harness the power of this simple conversation will get you everywhere. I promise.

Why? Because people would rather interview, hire, interact with people they already have some small connection with.

Humans are lazy and it is quicker to fill your interview slots up with referrals than go through a million resumes that were submitted on line. Humans also like feeling like they have some knowledge that they can bestow upon someone else. Basically, it is a win:win situation for all involved.

So, how do these things work?

My BFF got me this mug for Christmas when I was just about to launch Ladies Who Do Cool Sh!t. It was full of support and love for this new adventure I was about to embark on. ⠀⠀
Whenever I look at it I am so grateful for the community of KILLER people that surround me. However, I don’t think I am lucky to have that community.⠀⠀
I’m not lucky because I just didn’t “happen” to have all of these wonderful people in my life. I CHOSE to have these people. I WORKED to have these people in my life.⠀⠀
There was a moment about 6 years ago where my best friend was leaving for Germany, I had just gotten out of a relationship, I was transitioning to a new career and I was feeling really, really alone. ⠀⠀
I didn’t feel like I had a community of people I really needed around me to succeed in life. So, I made a decision to start building one. One that had people who made me want to work harder, that I could lean on, one that could lean on me.⠀⠀
Today, my community is STRONG and it allowed me to take a leap and start career coaching - a journey that is taking me on the most intense self-discovery process I could have never imagined. ⠀⠀
Making a huge change is hard and scary and if  you don’t feel like you have the right people around you, it makes it ten times harder. ⠀⠀
Build the community that you want to have when shit is hard. Build the community you want when shit is good. It is up to YOU and you alone to do that work. You need to show up, be vulnerable and invest in the people around you.⠀⠀
So, what does your current community look like and how are YOU investing in it?

Here is my quick and dirty to harness the power of the informational interview to get the job you want!

1. Make a list of companies that you want to work for

2. Find out if you know anyone who works there. If not, get on LinkedIn and try to find who your direct report would be or any hiring managers. 

3. Ask them to meet you for coffee (on you) or for a 20 minute informational interview. Cold email them with "I just graduated with a degree in x" or "I am considering a career transition" or "I work in x". I am looking to expand my network and education about the field. I really admire the work you did on (insert something that you learned about them here) and would love to ask you some questions about your career. Would you be open for coffee (my treat!) or a 20 minute phone call?

4. Do your research on the person before you meet!

5. Prepare specific questions that are focused on them and what they think are the skills needed for that role - do not go over the timeline you have set.

6. Always end the interviews with "Is there anyone else that you think would be important for me to talk to?" or "In your opinion, what do you think the best next steps for me to take in my career would be?" Then actually do the things that they tell you to do. (You would be surprised how many people don’t do this part. Follow up later with them and let them know you did what they suggested and what your experience was! Great way to keep them in your network)

7. Follow up with a thank you letter the next day.

IMPORTANT: Never, ever, ever ask for a job in that meeting. This is about getting to know someone who could hire you one day - or introduce you to the person who will hire you. 

I PROMISE YOU if you start doing this on a regular basis you will see your network increase, you will get interviews, you. will. get. JOBS.

Alright. Now get out there and go informational interview your pants off.

Happy Networking!!

The Importance of setting Boundaries During a Job Search