Informational Interview (Executive Summary Memorandum) (I WANT TO DO MARKETING MANAGER IN THE FUTURE)
Interview a person who currently holds a job that you would be interested in holding within five years after graduation. (I wish you the best of luck if you would like to be the CEO of Apple, but I’m talking about a job you could reasonablyexpect to obtain within the designated timeframe.) Your interview should last about 30-45 minutes. There are multiple objectives of this assignment: (1) gives you insight into the position; (2) to develop your research, interviewing, and self-presentation skills; (3) creates a networking opportunity; and (4) most importantly you gain experience writing an executive summary memorandum. WARNING: This is not an employment interview; so do not ask for a job. Present yourself as a student conducting research regarding future career possibilities.
Please follow these steps for this assignment:
- Read the chapter on researching and writing reports (Chapter 11 – specifically the topic of conducting primary qualitative research) regards to interviewing. Then conduct your own research regarding a job and potential companies that interest you. You will need at least three separate sources (from the library, the career services office [Eldridge Hall], the company). Library research may include general research on an entire field, as well as your specific company/person. You should gather basic information such as a job description, starting salary, level and type of education required for the position, and specific information regarding the company of interest (this is a great source of information to formulate interview questions). Write up the information you’ve gathered in an annotated bibliography.
- Contact an individual in the entry-level position of your choice. Do not interview someone in a top managerial position (g., CEO) or someone you know (relatives, friends and their companies are not acceptable for this assignment). Arrange an interview with the appropriate person for approximately 30-45 minutes.
- Formulate your interview questions and re-confirm a couple of days before your interview by telephone.
- For the interview, behave professionally. If the interview is in person, dress appropriately, in business attire. Introduce yourself, your purpose and your goals for the interview (“My goal for this interview is to learn about this job so that I understand what it’s like to work in such a position and what the requirements are to be hired in a job like yours”). Explain that you have a number of questions to ask and that you would like to take notes, if the interviewee does not object. Listen carefully, paraphrase responses, and ask for clarification when you do not understand. After finishing your questions, ask your interviewee if there is anything else they would like to tell you. Be conscious of the time you’ve used and do not go over, unless they indicate they wish to continue. Thank them for their time.
- As soon after the interview as possible, write a thank-you note and mail it to your interviewee. Be sure this brief letter is grammatically correct and error free. Make a copy to include when you turn in your assignment. This kind of note is neatly hand-written (no e-mailed thank-you notes). [Consult p. 607]
- Write a three-page executive summary memorandum about your interview. This report is a professional document in style and content which includes summaries on the following topics: • description of the industry/product/service • description of the position • requirements for the position (education, experience, skills) • general summary of what you learned overall from the interview process, including your thoughts and reactions.
- Your total Interview Package will consist of: • Executive Summary (in memo format, addressed to me) that will also include a reference page from your pre-interview research in proper work cited format • Photocopy of your thank-you note (participation grade).
The Executive Summary should be formatted as follows:
- Left and right margins should be 1”
- Font should be Arial 12 pt.
- Standard spacing (double space guidewords and single space body of memo)
- Length should be no more than 5 pages
- Headings/subheadings should be used as appropriate to the document content
- Include Citation Page in either APA/Chicago/Turabian format