You have worked so hard to network your way into a meeting with someone that works for your dream employer or within your industry of interest. Your objective is to create a professional impression with the person, demonstrate your knowledge of the industry and begin on the road to becoming a trusted member of their network. But what to ask at the meeting? Let's take a look at the type of questions you can ask:
1. How did you break into the industry?
2. If you could give advice to your younger self, what would it be?
3. What do you enjoy most about your job?
4. What do you enjoy least?
5. What is the culture like?
6. Do people tend to switch from job to job within the industry or stay at one company?
7. Are there any industry conventions that you suggest I attend?
8. Are there any industry publications/websites that are 'must reads' for you?
9. Can someone who is willing to put in extra hours but leave early for the sabbath fit in to the company culture?
10. Given the current developments in the industry (insert well developed, insightful research here!), where do you see the business going?
11. Where do you think my skills would best fit in the industry?
12. What are some tips you can give me for breaking into the industry?
13. How important is it that I get a masters degree?
14. What is valued more in the industry, education or experience?
15. Are there any additional short term trainings/certificate programs that would give me a better leg up in entering the industry?
16. What would be a reasonable salary expectation for someone looking to enter into the field, given my background?
17. Should I concentrate on working in a smaller firm or a transferable industry first or look to start at the bottom of a larger company in the industry?
18. What are some suggestions you would have for applying for a job in the industry?
19. Are most hires through networking or should I go through the company websites?
20. When one is building a professional relationship, at what point do you feel it would be appropriate to inquire if the person would be comfortable submitting a resume on my behalf?
21. Is there anything I can do to help you?
Remember to respect the person's time. After half an hour, get a sense if they are fully engaged in the conversation or seem ready to get back to the office. There is no need to get every question in, just use the list above as a guide for greater success.
When to ask a new contact for helphttp://www.lioncubjobsearch.com/2011/07/when-to-ask-for-help-on-networking.html
8 questions to determine if your connections can helphttp://www.lioncubjobsearch.com/2011/06/are-your-connections-really-your-best.html