Influence of Athletes Course Project
Influence, Athletes, Course, Project
Hilliard focuses on preparedness when explaining the interview process (2015). I do agree with being prepared but in my experience, I’ve found that if you over-prepare you might lose a sense of curiosity and even honesty. I’ve found that some of the best parts of my interviews have come from something unknown. Typically, though, I’m referring to interviews that are not live and allow room for editing.
Working in higher education, I often have to interview students, alumni, faculty and staff. The tone is more informal and the topics aren’t of life and death matters like may be the case in other corporate arenas. With that being said, the video interview is only a part of the overall communications plan.
Along with a video, there will also be a written story from the interview as well as photos. Depending on the results of the interviews and quotable moments – fun quotes and photos may be designed for social media. So the “interview” will have several parts and purposes.
Typically, there are a few ways for me to find out about a story that needs to be covered. Someone might submit a story idea on the website where they share the significance of the story. Someone may personally tell me about something happening that needs to include an interview. Or, I might just learn about someone that warrants an interview.
In all of these cases, I will likely reach out to someone associated to the interviewee to find out their story and why they would make a meaningful interview candidate. Once it’s determined that they, in fact, would make a good interview, I reach out to the interviewee for an interview.
If the topic at hand is something I’m unfamiliar with, I will do additional research on the topic. Recently we had a 22-year-old alumnus who was the first Vietnamese-American to be elected to a town council in North Carolina. This type of story took a little more research on my part because it dealt with things outside of my knowledge.
I needed to learn more about the history of the town council, the alumnus’ journey, and about the business he had also created. Without researching those things, my questions would have been from ignorance rather than being informative. I do agree that there is a thin line between too much and too little preparation (Hilliard, 2015).
In my world, the type of interview – whether someone equal to me, a subordinate, or a supervisor, doesn’t make too much difference. Every interview is going to be in a positive light and have a casual feel about it to be in line with our brand identity’s tone and voice. The difference may come in how comfortable that person is in front of a camera and their ability to answer questions in front of a camera. There are times persistence is key in an interview (Columbia, n.d.).
I recently interviewed a student and realized quickly that there was an issue. Without getting into the details, the interview was terrible and I was getting frustrated within myself. Camera shy doesn’t begin to explain what was happening. But I continued to ask questions trying to get the student to open up.
He was a singer in the university choir – so I even asked him to sing a song. After a long and frustrating interview when I was almost ready to give up, he said “the choir gives me a voice.” How awesome is that? Had I not continued with the interview I would have missed that most important piece. The very thing I wanted all along with all of my questions to get at the heart of this student and his talents – just floated out of nowhere.
So yes, I agree with Hilliard, but there is a balance of preparedness, persistence, and patience and depending in the interviewee there may be various levels at which each is needed.
References Columbia University. (n.d.) Interviewing principles. Retrieved from http://www.columbia.edu/itc/journalism/isaacs/edit/MencherIntv1.html
Hilliard, R. (2015). Writing for television, radio, and new media. (11th ed.). Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning.