How to watch an interview

I know one of the reasons you’re reading this post is to learn how to be great in an interview: how to look and feel confident, come across as relatable and an expert, and how to add lots of value (even if you only have 3 minutes!).

And one of the keys to learning this craft is knowing how to watch other people’s interviews and learn from them.

It’s something that I started doing as a reporter for NBC, so I could hone my interview skills…and then when I became the spokesperson for my own business, and started sharing my story, I continued to watch interviews…not just to see how the interviewer was crafting questions and interacting, but also how the interview was coming across.

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So, here are five things you can do to start watching interviews more effectively.

1. Set aside time to watch an interview several times so you can really absorb all that it has to teach you.

2. The first time you watch, really experience both people: do you like the person being interviewed? Do you like the interviewer? Does it make you laugh, cry, feel nothing? Simply watch for initial reactions.

3. Next, if you like (or don’t like—this can be equally as valuable) the person being interviewed, watch again for why: what are they doing specifically that allows you to feel something? What makes you feel connected? How did she/he interact with the interviewer?

4. Watch again for how the person handled each question: did the questions play to that person’s strengths? Did the interviewer seem to like her/him? Did the interviewee answer each question directly, or did they shift to speak about something that they thought was more important?

5. What can you takeaway and commit to trying in your next interview? You’ll gather a lot of new insights if you start watching interviews this way, {click to tweet} but I want you to commit to trying ONE new thing that really stood out to you.

So, let’s practice with a fun one!

Watch this five year-old interviewed by Ellen, and tell me in the comments below: what stands out to you about this interview? How do you feel about the little boy? And Ellen? What’s your biggest takeaway?




P.S. Itching for more interviews to review? Allow me to introduce my new resource page created just for you, bombshells!  I’ve selected a bunch of goodies to help you master your message: interviews, how-to guides, video tutorials, and more, so pop on over and take a peek!



  1. Patrick Dyson said:

    OK, that one made me laugh until I cried. Hard to analyze it, what a great find!
    I thought that they both did really well – Ellen was prepared and gracious, letting him answer, with good timing to come in. He answered the question and made it clear that his answers were heartfelt and honest. Serious love!


    • Ellie said:

      So glad you enjoyed it, Patrick. And yes, I picked it because I thought it was a refreshing interview with two very solid personalities. 🙂 One of the reasons I love this interview is because this 5 year-old is just totally confident in being himself {he hasn’t learned not to be yet!} and saying whatever he feels like saying, even if it has nothing to do with the question he was asked.

      And I totally agree: Ellen was able to handle the interview with grace and humor, which is what she does so well.

      So, Patrick, I’m curious… after watching this would you be inspired to try anything new in your next interview? I’d love to hear what stood out to you most that you can use!


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