5 Tips To Follow When Being Interviewed

Kicking off June with a blast from the past.

Oh… these aren’t job interview tips… although maybe they apply here too.

In 2006 I was interviewed on a Christian Radio Station in Latvia.  I was pretty honored.  I played a live version of a song I wrote, and then they played a recording I had made too.  They’d ask me questions in Latvian which would be translated for me.  I would respond.  And then my response would be translated.  The final show they cut out the translation of the original question in Latvian.  I can’t find the full interview but I did dig up this one clip, you can check it out below.  Haha.  Funny.  You’ll hear the early 2000’s screamo influence in a song I wrote in my twenties.  :)

My friends Chris Bischoff and Mark Krebs were in the studio with me.  We were there because Chris was a missionary in Latvia at the time and my friend Mark and I were there to work with them.  I remember them being a little offended that I didn’t mention them in the interview and that was a huge oversight of mine.  I was excited and only focused on me.

I had an American Government and economics teacher in high school named Mr. Bryant.  I think that was his name… I can’t remember if it was or not.  There are a few things I remember from his class.

The very first class he took one chair out of the room.  I was most likely intentionally late to class and so I didn’t have a seat.  It was a lesson on scarcity.

Mr Bryant was also the varsity baseball coach and I remember him teaching how he instructed all of his players on how to do an interview.  The local newspapers would show up often looking for a story.  It’s been well over 10 years since I took this class so here’s what I remember.  He outlined 3 steps that I remember and I add two more at the end.

1.  Speak positively about the other team

Start your interview off by speaking highly of the other team.  Don’t come off as arrogant.  I think this applies to any interview by simply thanking whoever is interviewing you for taking the time to do so.

2.  Talk about your team mates

You didn’t get here alone.  You might be the star of the game and that’s why they are interviewing you, but you just shared the field with other players who helped you win the game.

In the Latvian Radio interview, I wouldn’t be there if Chris and his wife Lydia hadn’t committed to that country and done the hard work to make connections.  And Mark was a huge support to me, he even showed me some of the chords that I was using in one of my songs.  Sorry guys.

3.  Talk about you

After you’ve honored others then you can talk about yourself.

4.  Honor those who got you to where you are

If someone has played a big role in your life, then share that in the interview.  If there is a book or resource that has helped shape you or inspire you share that in the interview too.

5.  Have interview questions ready for the interviewer

I remember reading a Michael Hyatt blog post about interviews where he says to not assume that the interviewer has read your book, and to send them interview questions ahead of time.  For some reason this blew my mind, but it makes sense.  I just did an interview for my podcast Doing Ministry Well with Fr. John an Orthodox Priest and I wanted to share about Orthodoxy with our listeners but didn’t even really know where to start.  He sent me a list of questions to ask him to get started and that was a huge help.

Don’t forget to check out the 5 minute clip of my interview below.  hahahahahaha

Have you ever been interviewed live or in print?  What are some tips you would share?


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