Career Adventure Guide

Expanding and Exploring in the Real World

How can you search for combinations and new jobs in the real world?

Most people find two main avenues as a starting point:

    1. You can informational interview and meet people, talking with them about their jobs, learning where you want to work and the types of jobs that you can do, or
    2. You can submit your resume to online websites in gigantic volumes and pray that the algorithms work for you.

We recommend leaning hardest on #1 above, and will show you shortly ways to at least play the Game in #2 above. We greatly encourage that you

    • explore what is out there from real people
    • learn from what is needed in terms of future skills
    • make connections that can help you create a series of possible paths
    • test with experiments
    • evaluate options and look at new combinations, and
    • keep testing/trying.

How can you Explore?

We strongly suggest that before you look for internships and/or jobs that you do a lot of Informational Interviewing. This process is talking with real people to both investigate options and start building your “Tribe” of people to help you and take risks on you in the future. It is a process of thoughtfully connecting with alumni from your school and industry execs who are just out of school or another 5-10 years older to talk about their paths (NOT about looking for a job or internship).

Many people are challenged by the daunting task of making first contact with someone they don’t know; affectionately known as “Fear of Reaching Out” or FORO. This is one of the biggest hurdles in career work for a lot of individuals. Some may not want to talk to you, and that’s okay. You may need to reach out to a decent variety in order to make the right connections for your path.


There are many resources about Informational Interviewing…

Seeking resources for companies and ideas?

  • You can find trade associations at  Trade associations have conferences, YouTube channels, often free newsletters, and sometimes job boards.  You can see who speaks at their conferences and find their words and work stories on YouTube or LinkedIn.
  • If you went to college or are in college, look through your university alumni in your sectors on LinkedIn — and see who knows who.  For example, you could look at Cal State Fullerton alumni by searching and finding the School page at  On the tabs below, you will find an Alumni tab at  You there can search by title, keyword, year, employer, and other categories.  You might not know people in common via LinkedIn, so can’t reach out directly unless you subscribe to one of their services.  However, you might find them additionally on Instagram and can kindly direct message them . . . and then move the conversation to email as a follow-up.  You also can look at what types of jobs alumni have to see where they have worked in the past, where they also will know people.


Seeking ideas for U.S. companies more broadly?