How to build social skills by interviewing people on the streets

2 min readFeb 7, 2023


You hear it often. You hear it online — you’ve got to build social skills.

And the number of people saying it has increased. The words are social skills, or people skills, or just in general a confidence in interacting with other humans.

And it’s true. At heart, we are created to interact with each others. Believe it or not, we as a human race will not survive without social relations.

And the better you are at it, the more you could get out of it — and out of life in general.

So building social skills is a critical aspect of personal and professional development, and there are many ways to work on it. One approach that can be both fun and informative is to conduct street interviews. By talking to people from different backgrounds, you can learn about various perspectives, improve your communication skills, and enhance your confidence.

Here I am right of the malls at 59th street Columbus Circle, New York City doing street interviews. As a beginner, the key here for you is to keep it simple. Here I only asked here 3 questions and thanked her for her time.

Here are some steps you can take to start doing it.

  1. Choose your location: Look for a place with a lot of foot traffic and diverse people, such as a busy street, a park, or a shopping mall.
  2. Plan your questions: Think about the topics you want to explore and write down a list of questions. Keep them open-ended to encourage conversation and avoid yes or no answers.
  3. Be prepared: Make sure you have a notepad and pen to take notes, and dress appropriately for the location. It’s also a good idea to have a backup plan in case you encounter any issues.
  4. Start with a smile: Approach people with a friendly smile and introduce yourself. Explain the purpose of your interview and ask for their consent to participate.
  5. Listen actively: During the interview, be fully present and listen to the person’s responses. Show interest in what they have to say by making eye contact and nodding.
  6. Be respectful: Be mindful of the person’s opinions, and avoid asking intrusive or personal questions. If they decline to answer, respect their decision and move on.
  7. Practice empathy: Try to understand the person’s perspective and relate to their experiences. This will help you connect with them and build rapport.
  8. Take notes: Write down key points from the conversation to remember later and reflect on what you’ve learned.
Here I am again at Grand Central using talking to Natalie from Texas. She was visiting New York City. Here again, the interview was only for a minute and it was simple — 3 questions.

By conducting street interviews, you can develop your social skills, gain new insights, and make meaningful connections with others. So, grab your notepad, put on a smile, and start chatting with people in your city!

And if you want to actually use this skill to build your network, you can check out my course on how to do exactly that in 21 days!




Founder @kilimanjaro, author of 2 books, and video game design/ programming instructor. Connect with/message me on twitter @kttemanu