Preparation, Key to Interviewing

Matthew Januszek, the CEO of Escape Fitness, provides some useful tips on interviewing (as an interviewer) and overcoming initial nervousness. He has interviewed about 250 persons in the past five years.


Prepare questions for interviewing

In terms of determining the questions to ask, understanding the interviewee's business and also the goal of the interview is key.

Also, provide as many details and different perspectives as possible. Put it all together for a balanced argument on the point that is being put across.

Preparation and practice

One could get a little bit starstruck by some of the famous people and feel nervous prior to the interview. However, if you are prepared, it transforms from being super nervous to super excited. You're ready to go. If not, then that's the cause of being super nervous.

Preparation and practice will help in anticipating when people are going to catch you out and when it's going to go well. So think it through by playing it in your head and deal with the nerves before getting there.

And when you're there, you will be genuinely excited. You need to get to a stage where you're actually excited about what you're going to do, as opposed to being worried about what you're going to say.

Make the interviewee feel comfortable

In order to make the interviewee feel comfortable at the initial stage of the interview, put a few warm-up questions in advance. Ask them what they would like to get out of the interview; anything specifically they wanna talk about or avoid talking about. Try and get them as relaxed as possible.

And if the interview is not live, the pressure is even less. We can stop at any time; the interviewee can raise his or her hand if they say the wrong thing so that it is excluded during editing.

For most people, particularly those who have never done an interview before, there's a lot of nerves. So it's important to reassure them and to let 'em know that, whatever they say, they're in complete control.

As an interviewer, bring out the best in them. Put them in the best light and maybe get 'em to think about things that they've done or achieved that they probably don't necessarily recognize or realize. Try and pull that out of them so that they can tell the best version of themselves.

Pursuing a career as an interviewer

If you wish to take up a career as an interviewer, make sure you are really committed to doing it. Unless you can commit to doing it for a year, it's doubtful whether you've got the time, the resources, or the ability to actually do it. But if you can make it for a year, then you're going to get through the most difficult part. And then you're going to be on a roll.

But if you go and say, you're just going do a few episodes, the chances of you sticking with it and being successful long enough in making it work are very low.

Link to various interviews by Matthew Januszek.