Given these various phases and the variety of goals of an interview, the importance of properly conducted interview should be self-evident. Since each interview is in fact a personal exchange of information between two personalities, a set of guidelines for the interviewer should be established to ensure that nothing interferes with the stated goal,
gathering complete, accurate information. The interview is not an adversary relationship; instead it should be a conversation. Above all it is a process, and like most processes it has certain rules and guidelines which should be followed.
- First and foremost, establish the tone of the interview.
- Let the interviewee know the reason for the interview and why he or she was selected to be interviewed.
- Stress that the interviewee’s knowledge and opinions are important, and will aid in the analysis process.
- Gain the interviewee’s trust and cooperation early on, and maintain it
- Establish what will happen to the information gathered.
- Determine any areas of confidentiality or restricted information.
- Let the interviewee know that candor and honesty will be valued and that nothing will be published or passed on until it has been reviewed and verified by the interviewee.
- Firmly establish that there are no negative consequences to being interviewed.