Interviews are more than asking questions and expecting a response.
Interviews are a dialogue waiting to emerge, and, therefore, should be recorded (of course, with permission) so you can keep the conversation focused and undistracted. Plus, it just makes for a better experience (like being rid of any awkward long pauses and silence while trying to take notes).
When arranging your interviews, be face-to-face. Why? Interviews are more than just aggregating data. Such an opportunity allows you to glean additional information that comes from a visually intuitive and interpretive place.
As an interviewer, be prepared with your core set of questions that is ALWAYS customized to your interviewee. This gives them the opportunity to respond appropriately from their experience and background. Oh, and keep your questions a surprise so that the responses you receive remain spontaneous and genuine.
The interview process requires trust in order to create an insightful rapport. So sit, observe, and listen while you inquire about your brand, taking in the strengths, weaknesses, and overall perceptions that are beyond your purview.
Action: Create a list of what insight you hope to gain from your internal and external interviews.
“So tell me what you want, what you really, really want” – Spice Girls, “Wannabe”