When interviewing podcast guests it is easy to default to standard questions such as “tell us about yourself” or “what do you do for a living”, however your audience will likely already know the basics about who your guest is and what they do. You will need to ask thought-provoking questions to encourage your guest to dig deeper and share some more interesting insights.
Here are 9 of our favourite questions for podcast guests.
How would your parents describe what you do for a living?
With this question the guest is able to talk about what they do, keeping it interesting and bringing in outsiders’ perspectives. They will likely tell you how their parents see their job, and then correct that idea by explaining what they actually do.
What is the biggest myth about what you do that you would like to debunk?
This is a good way to ask any podcast guest to tell you about what they do while keeping the question open-ended and interesting.
What is the best compliment you have ever received?
With this question you give your podcast guest the option to be more personal and move from speaking about their career to their personal life should they wish to.
If you were president/king for a day what would you do?
It is always good to mix in some questions that aren’t work related, or about the guest specifically. The guest has control over how they want to answer and whether they want to keep the conversation light-hearted, or steer it into a more serious direction.
What was your biggest failure and what have you learnt from it? (You can personalise this based on the podcast guest.)
Sharing failure helps the guest to seem more human and real to your audience, and allows for a deeper connection. The story of how they have overcome and learnt from their failures will also inspire those hoping to follow a similar path.
How do you continue to learn and keep up to date with current trends and changes in your industry?
This question is three fold. Your podcast guest will be able to tell you about what they are learning about, share resources, and share industry trends that they are keeping up with or interested in.
What advice would you give to someone starting out it this business/industry/life path?
Sharing advice is a perfect way for your guest to connect with and inspire your audience – especially those hoping to follow in the speaker’s footsteps. This also allows the speaker to offer value to your listeners and feel that they have made a difference.
If you were me, what would you have asked yourself that I haven’t asked you?
This question allows your guest to share anything that you may not have given them an opportunity to talk about yet.
Where can our listeners connect with / follow you online?
This gives your guest an opportunity to promote themselves and any projects they are working on while hopefully also gaining followers and growing their online community. If the guest isn’t already well-known they will appreciate this gesture even more.
How to come up with your own podcast guest questions.
Prefer to think of your own interview questions? Here are some tips.
Think about your goal; what are you trying to achieve with this interview.
Jot down all the questions that come to mind when you think about your guest and what he/she does.
Write down things that you, or your audience might want to learn from your guest.
Think about any wisdom or lessons that the guest might want to share with you and the audience.
Compile everything you have written down into a list of well thought out, thought-provoking questions, along with follow up questions, that would be interesting to your podcast audience while making your guest feel that they have contributed something of value.