37signals is a smart Web site. And by that, of course, I mean that the people behind it are smart and have valuable things to share. In their own words, 37signals is “a privately-held Chicago-based company committed to building the best web-based software products possible with the least number of features necessary.” (The online apps, by the way, are great. And no, we’re not affiliated with them in any way.)
The site (again, the gang behind it) also publishes Signal vs. Noise, which just blogged a SMITH-relevant item about the importance of the question in eliciting the compelling response. Pointing first to this article in the American Journalism Review, the 37signals piece summarizes the advice nicely:
“Bland personalities get spicier information … Don’t hog the mic … Try to learn, not validate your own opinion … etc.”
The post also has lots of great links to advice about interviewing techniques designed to make people not just willing but eager to tell their stories.
It’s a must read for the SMITH crowd.