- Can you describe your background?
- What were the experiences that had an effect on your career development?
- How did you become interested in your field?
- Does your work relate to any experiences or studies you had in college?
- How did college prepare you for this job?
- Has your career progress been a planned, controlled process?
- How much has it been affected by external factors? ... by chance?
Contact's Job and Career Path
- What do you do in your job? What is a typical day?
- What skills are particularly important in your field?
- How would you describe the working atmosphere and the people with whom you work?
- How should someone considering the field best prepare?
- What is the necessary or recommended education or training?
- What are the entry level opportunities in your career field?
- What is a typical career path in this field or organization?
- Is there any type of training program? What skills are necessary and what experience?
- What personal qualities are shared by most of the successful people in your field?
- What aspects of this field do you consider particularly satisfying?
- What are the rewards, both tangible and intangible?
- What are some of the more difficult aspects of your work?
- Are these typical of the field?
- What are some of the stresses and frustrations, and how do you prepare for these?
- How do the satisfactions and difficulties balance out?
- How does your career affect your life-style?
- Time available for relationships and other interests?
- Salary and benefits that support a particular way of life?
- Impact of this field on being single? ... partnered? ... having children?
- If you were to start over, would you choose the same path? ... the same work?
- What major changes are anticipated in your field in the next ten years?
Contact's Company or Organization
- What are primary goals and concerns of this organization?
- What are the prospects for advancement?
- Is that typical of organizations in this field/industry?
- My stongest assets (skills, areas of knowledge, personality traits, values) are … Where would they fit in with this organization? Where might they fit in other fields? Where might they fit in other organizations?
- Is there a basic philosophy of the company or organization and what is it? (Is it a people, services, or product oriented business?
Recommended Next Steps
- Can you suggest reading material that might give me further insight into this field (organization)? What publications and professional associations are important to the field?
- Whom else would you recommend that I speak to for advice? May I tell them that you suggested I contact them?
- Can you suggest other professionals who might be helpful?