6 Tips from IDEO Designers on How to Unlock Insightful Conversation – IDEO U

1. Always say yes to an offer. Whether the other person offers you a glass of water, snacks, or even a tour of their home, you should always accept.

2. Wear generic clothing. Oftentimes, clothing can communicate social status, or reflect personal taste that others may disagree with.

3. Treat people like partners in research. The people you interview aren’t just research subjects or data points.

4. Leave comfortable silences. When it seems like the other person is done speaking … you should create some space by just nodding and writing things down —it gives the other person room to continue speaking beyond…

5. Take the spotlight off the other person. …we like to bring provocations into research sessions. …sketch out rough concepts to show the other person, and ask them for feedback.

6. Try very intentionally to fall in love with each person (even if it’s just a little bit). Even if you don’t naturally click with someone, you can always find something you truly appreciate about them, whether it’s their voice or their passion for the topic at hand.