16 Basic Interview Qs for Business Histories

Use these 16 foundational interview questions to gather the facts, feelings, and framework for your organization’s history. We’ve used them with great results across 1,500 interviews for CorporateHistory.net’s business history books and campaigns.

Your time at The X Company
1. Name (with spelling), credentials, title, location, start date.
2. What led you to this work?
3. What did you know about the company before you started?
4. Which job did you start in?
5. Was that job different from what you do now? How so?
6. What is your most memorable experience or favorite story?
7. What training and development has company provided?
8. Has working here changed you in any way?
9. What is the best compliment you ever received at work?

Your view of The X Company
10. How would you describe the culture?
11. Why is it a good place to work (e.g., people, benefits, training and development, pride in products)?
12. If you’ve worked elsewhere, what makes this company different?
13. What major turning points and challenges have you seen during your time here?
14. What does the name or brand The X Company mean to you?
15. If you could write a thank-you note to your co-workers and/or company founder, what are some of the things you’d tell them?
16. Anything else we haven’t touched on that you’d like to talk about?

These are core Qs, often appended with queries about specific products, services, and events. Coming in the next blog post: specialized Qs that can help you illuminate the personalities of your interviewees.