In this project management tutorial Angela shares tips for ending the interview well.
- Too many meetings today end with a swift knock on the meeting room door and everyone scurries to let the next group in. Sound familiar? Requirement solicitation meetings need to have endings that truly show our next steps and ensure stakeholders are comfortable with the progress. Without this, stakeholders leave the room feeling uneasy, frustrated, and may talk behind your back, creating unneeded conflict and drama for the project. I would like to go over some tips on ending your elicitation interviews with comfort and ease for both parties.
Make sure to keep your eye on the clock and save time for ending the interview well. I believe it is much better to schedule a follow-up if everything did not get covered rather than skipping a meaningful ending. First, review and summarize what was covered. You may want to review the key points of the notes you've taken about what was discussed, decisions made, and next steps for both parties. I also like to ask what remains lingering in their minds. This simple, yet powerful, technique helps you connect with the interviewee and see how their mindset has evolved throughout the dialogue.
This question helps you understand what the stakeholder is thinking about and how their view has evolved or changed with your dialogue. I love to use this question. As a follow-on to the what lingers question, I like to ask what concerns or risks are they thinking about. This shows you really care about their concerns and are not just an order taker and solely tactical in your role. This question also helps provide more context to empathize and understand the stakeholder's point of view.
Once you understand where their mindset is, you will need to quickly determine if more time is needed. Let the interviewee know why you feel more time is needed. Or, you can ask them if they think more time would be helpful to explore certain topics. Agree on a rough date and amount of time with them. Last, but not least, review items to follow-up on with each person including scheduling any follow-up meetings and when they can expect to hear from you next.
And, of course, don't forget to thank them for their time.
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- Choosing to use interviews
- Selecting the right person to interview
- Planning interview questions
- Building rapport in an interview
- Choosing probing questions
- Listening and taking notes
- Analyzing and reviewing notes before following up