Although informational interviews are far more relaxed than a regular interview, (since there is much less at stake than an actual job or an internship), don’t be lax in your appearance or behavior when meeting with the interviewer. Professional attire and behavior are required as is preparation to ensure that you do not waste your time or that of the interviewer. Prior to the interview make sure that you explain the purpose of the interview. Most professionals are happy to share their insight on their profession with those who are serious about entering the field. They often wish that they could have received the same tips and recommendations prior to embarking on their own career.
To ensure a successful interview, prepare a list of questions for the interviewer in advance. Be aware of time and conclude the interview once the allotted time you set in advance has been met. Be sure to thank the interviewer for his/her time and follow up with a timely thank you note. Maintain connections with the interviewer after the interview and be sure to apprise them of any recommendations you followed up on or any future internships or jobs you accept in the future.
Informational interviewing can provide good experience when interviewing for internships or jobs. They are a good way to become more relaxed in an interview situation since the more practice you get interviewing the more comfortable you will become with the process. They can also help you to build a strong networking connection through follow-up and continual communication.