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    Table of contents

    • Interviews
      • Practical Tips
        • Preparation
      • In Dialogue
      • Evaluation

    Interviews are similar to juntos and all that is written on the previous page applies equally here. However, the context is slightly different, and so that is what we will focus on in this page.

    Most importantly, Kernel interviews are NOT assessments or examinations. Your primary task is to make the people who turn up to these calls comfortable and to give them a taste of what conversations in Kernel are like. The core team filters all applications before the interview stage, so you can be sure that anyone you're speaking to is interesting and that it will be an hour well spent.

    Practical Tips



    Each interview slot is assigned a "pre-read" which is one of the Core Readings from the first 3 modules. If you have the time, try and re-familiarise yourself with that reading, as the interviewees will come in expecting to discuss it.


    One of the stewards will share a spreadsheet prior to the interview with a brief description of the people assigned to you. Familiarise yourself with them, as this will make asking introductory questions easier and more fruitful.


    You will need to provide your perspective about whether the people you talked to are suited for Kernel or not in this same spreadsheet at the end of the interviews.


    Remember, Kernel fellows are open, honest, generous with their time and gifts, willing to serve and put others before themselves. Try your best to identify these characteristics in the people you speak with.

    In Dialogue

    Everything that is written on the Juntos page applies equally here. Especially the skill of finding and asking those linking questions based on how people introduce themselves in order to set the norm of people talking to each other, rather than having to go through you every time. The more you can encourage genuine discussion, rather than stilted questions and response, the easier your job will be. Some addtional points to consider include:


    Express gratitude that these people have taken the time out of their day to come to this conversation.


    Emphasise that it is not an assessment, but a conversation aimed at getting to know one another and form genuine connections.


    Focus on why they chose to be here and what they expect to learn from going through Kernel.


    Use the answers to these why questions to encourage the participants to respond to each other.


    Use the pre-read as a springboard to discussion by asking "What touched your heart in this reading?" and "What did you disagree with?"


    Ask further clarifying questions, especially when asking about disagreements. These are vital, as they illustrate that Kernel is not about group-think: it's about genuine and open exploration with our peers.


    Try and relate any questions you ask to the participant's actual lived experience, and encourage them to speak about that. For instance, with trust, ask them about who they trust and why. How does this abstract concept actually play out in their lives?


    If you're really grasping at straws for conversation, ask them, "What important thing did you recently change your mind about?" This tends to produce interesting and revealing answers.


    Make sure to thank them at the end of the discussion and encourage them to keep asking the meaningful questions no matter where they end up or what they end up doing.


    How you evaluate the people you speak with is ultimately up to you. Remember, Kernel is what we make it to be between all of us and you're helping with interviews because you are trusted to help define who is welcome here and why.

    That said, here are some questions you can ask yourself as you choose between the different options we provide in the spreadsheet for evaluations after your discussion.


    Do you see or would you like to see this person as your teammate for a project in this (or any) cohort?


    How likely are you to trust this person with a core component of a project (either working in team or solo)?


    Did the conversation feel transparent?


    Would you like to delve deeper on any one topic that you touched during this conversation later on?


    What is the one thing that stood out in that person's speech, ideas and thoughts for you?

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