What Do You Do to Admonish Interviewees?
What do I do to admonish an interviewee? My admonishments include introducing my law firm, introducing myself, introducing who I am, my role in this process. I generally will talk about the methods of investigation that are possible. I do that in part so that I can make the point that talking to people is the most important thing I can do to collect good evidence. I will also talk about honesty and transparency in an investigation. In that, I always say, "I'm going to ask you to pledge to be open and honest with me," and ask them to give me some affirmation that they will do the same. But then I also say, "I pledge to be open and honest with you. And so, if you have a question for me, I'll either answer your question or I'll explain to you why I can't answer your question." And that relates to the admonishment about confidentiality. And so, in my case, I feel very strongly about not going from interview to interview telling people what other people said. I know that there are investigators that do that, but I think it is just absolutely destructive to the culture of an organization if you don't maintain confidentiality between interviews. I'm not saying I don't tell my client what's going on, my client gets a full report. But as between the accused and the witness, in between different witnesses, there's no reason to say who said what. I mean, people are smart, and they can make their own conclusions, but I never go from interview to interview telling people what other people said. If the person involved is the accused, then I also tell them, "You've been accused of some bad behaviors in the workplace, and we're going to talk about it. This is your opportunity to explain the rest of the story or why you did the thing that you did. " This is their time to explain to their employer why they made the decisions they did. And then lastly, if the environment that I'm in is a union environment, I always ask if the person's in a union. Even if I know they're not, I ask them every single time. If they're in a union environment, I will ask that question.