An interview is a process of posing questions to a particular respondent with the purpose of obtaining new information. In various areas, interviews are often recorded and used for various purposes. For instance, the interview with a famous person can reveal the truth on various aspects of his/her life. As for the key interview purposes, they aim to receive the factual information about the respondent or the project he/she produces. If you need to conduct an interview, but you lack the relevant skills or experience, we recommend you to read our essay on interview techniques and it will provide you with many tips and secrets of the successful interview.
How to Conduct an Interview?
Although an interview may have many different forms, usually, it assumes the interaction between the interviewer and a respondent. A good interview is usually conducted in three forms – face-to-face, over the telephone, or via the Internet. Both the interviewer and a respondent need to choose the form that is the most convenient to them and agree on the time of the interview. If you want to succeed in your interview, you need to come prepared for it. It means that in order to ask the right questions, you need to study the background of the respondent carefully in order to understand his/her motivation and beliefs. All in all, every essay on interview techniques will tell you that if you want to get a positive grade for your interview essay you need to spend enough time for both the prewriting and writing stages.
Depending on the interview type, it can be defined either quantitative or qualitative research. When the research objective is exploratory in its nature, the interview is considered as qualitative as this interview enables the respondents to answer the open-ended questions mentioning all the necessary details without constraining the answers. At the same time, highly structured interviews in which the interviewer follows a standardized questionnaire are considered quantitative, especially when the researcher statistically analyzes the data obtained.
Potential Pitfalls of Interview
The interviews, especially those that were poorly structured, can have methodological pitfalls that usually lead to the failing results. As such, the wrong way of asking questions or wording can become a serious obstacle on a way towards getting a satisfactory result. Moreover, in a face-to-face interview, the race, ethnicity, gender, and age of the researcher may influence the respondent`s answers. Moreover, if the interviewer is guided by the certain biases or prejudices, he/she will find it difficult to interpret the findings in an objective way. Therefore, if you want to conduct a good interview, you need to make sure all the answers are honest and objective.
The interview structure depends mainly on the interview format. However, regardless of the type of the interview, it should contain an introduction, body, and a conclusion. A well-structured interview always implies the specific questionnaire that helps reveal the respondent`s personality, as well as the project he or she presents. Undoubtedly, following this questionnaire may help the interviewer conduct a focused and result-oriented interview. At the same time, unstructured types of interviews can help the respondent and the interviewer guide and control the direction of the interview.
Common Interview Tips
As you already know, there are various types of interviews such as informational interviews, portrait interviews, analytical interviews, and many others. However, regardless of the type, all the interviews should follow a number of clearly established rules for communicating with people. As such, when talking to a person, try to use only open-ended questions; the ones that do not imply a definite answer like “yes” or “no.”
- In order to get as much information as possible from your respondent, do not immediately ask him/her serious questions, trying to reveal the essence of his personality. First, try to create the right atmosphere. For this purpose, learn the respondent`s background and tell a funny joke.
- Begin your questions with the words “why,” “how,” “for what purpose,” etc. This will allow the interviewee to think about the answer, and the answer will turn out to be complete and detailed. When asking a question, carefully listen to the answer.
- Do not try to add your reflections or observations to the respondent`s answer. Instead of the intended answer to a seemingly well-known question, the other person may be shocked by listening to your own interpretation of facts.
- Do not interrupt the person interviewed giving him/her the opportunity to speak. The interviewee can be gently stopped only if he has moved away from the given topic.
- Do not turn the interview into an ordinary and even crony conversation. Be sure to prepare for the interview in advance. Think over and write down at least ten questions for the interlocutor, in order not to look like an amateur to him.
- Listen carefully to the answers, as any information that the interviewee will convey to you can be extremely useful and interesting. Keep in mind that more is better than less since it is always easier to cut than to add.
Writing an Interview Essay
Interview essay writing is a rather challenging and time-consuming process that requires much attention and dedication. We recommend you not to wait for too long before its writing since you can miss the important details of the interview. First and foremost, take all your notes and create a good outline. This outline is a base of your essay so be sure to mention everything that is worth attention. When the outline is ready, use it to develop a good interview essay. Although the interview has the question-answer format, your essay should have a classic form allowing to explore the interviewee`s personality from different perspectives. When the essay is ready, be sure to proofread it and fix all grammatical mistakes and logical inconsistencies. Finally, to get a good grade for your interview essay, you need to submit it on time.
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