No one gives you a plan. No one.
At most they BARELY give you an idea.
”Go to college and get your degree so you can get a good job”.
Let’s be honest.
That old propaganda is over and dried out like jerky.
People still try to use it.
But you see right through it.
And it’s all because of that computer that you carry around in your backpack, or your front pocket.
The internet has flipped everything on it’s head. And it’s to your benefit.
And now you see the “investment” in university a bit differently.
You’ve talked with your friends and the thought of the college debt you’ll be carrying around for decades, sounds exhausting.
You don’t want to just go through the motions with your education anymore. You want to do, and learn about something, you actually LIKE!
You have a lot of options now. So why settle?
But there’s a problem.
You’ve been following the normal protocol for years now and you’ve never REALLY thought about what you want to do with your life.
So how the hell do you figure out what your purpose is?
How do you figure out what you like and don’t like in a career?
This hilarious gif is right. You need a plan.
If university isn’t your path, you need to figure something else out.
Believe it or not, there’s a more practical approach to answering your questions.
This three-ish step process, explained in the video, won’t burn a hole in your bank account AND it’ll help you get down to figuring out what the P90X you should be doing with your life!
THE DEEP DIVE
(There are part of the video that could use further explanation. Here it is.)
1. How do I reach out to someone for an informational interview?
You’d be surprised how many people will respond to a DM in their Facebook Messenger or their Instagram DM.
But, of course, there’s also the tried-and-true practice of going to their contact form on their page and filling it out.
Ask them, straight and simple:
Hi [persons name]!
I found your work [e.g., on a whim in Instagram, in an article] and I immediately fell in love with it. Especially your [e.g., name something specific about their work].
I’ve been researching what you do, but would like to get a better perspective of what this career path entails. Would it be cool if I [e.g., sent you a few questions?, asked you a few questions via a 15-20 minute Skype or Zoom call?, could meet up with you for 15-20 minutes to ask my questions?].
Does next Tuesday at 1pm work for you?
If not, no worries. You tell me what time works for you. I'm flexible.
Keep up the brilliant work! [Your Name]
2. What are some other ways to reach out to someone?
Go on LinkedIn and check out their profile.
See if you know someone that has that 1st connection with that individual. If so, ask that person to give an introduction.
So this person doesn’t have to spend 15-20 minutes figuring out what to say in this intro, WRITE IT OUT FOR THEM.
Tell them, ALL they have to do is copy and paste this message to the contact.
E-A-S-Y as Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, right?
A lot of people will be willing to help you if you take the friction out of them doing so. The friction for this, is time.
Meaning, “I don’t want to spend 15-20 minutes trying to figure out what to say in this email”.
To fix this dilemma, you do it for them. And now, it takes them less than 30 seconds with little to no effort on their part.
They can tweak it if they want to, but you’ve done ALL the heavy lifting for them.
3. What should the message say?
Something along the lines of:
Hi [persons name]!
I'll be honest, I can't remember when or how we connected here on LinkedIn.
So starting from scratch, it's nice to meet you.
[Your name] is looking to make a career move in the next few months. [(S)He] learned about you and your career through [e.g., a professor, a project, a friend, an article in a publication] and would like to know more about how you got started in your career and more about your position as a [name of the position].
[Your name] would like to chat with you, perhaps during a 15-20 minute Skype or Zoom call.
Would it be okay if I connected you two? Either way, let me know.
Thanks, [Senders Name]
4. If they agree to the meetup or phone call, what kinds of questions should I be asking them?
Open ended questions. Nothing that can be a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ response.
Ask them questions that need context.
For example: “What education, formal or informal, played a big role in how you excelled in your career”?
5. What should I do afterwards?
You follow-up with them. Tell them what actions you took after speaking with them.
Did you enroll in a course? Did you talk with someone they recommended? Did you execute on that thing they told you to try?
People LOVE to hear that someone followed through on their advice. They especially love to hear that you’re successful because of it.
Don’t be shy. Do a little humble brag.
It could be the beginning of a professional relationship with this person.
QUESTION OF THE DAY:
[For the college grad] If you had to do college or university again, would you? Why or why not?
Let us know in the comments below.