Interview and Interrogation Training: Room Distractions

In this week’s WZ / IAI interview and interrogation training tip, Dave Thompson, CFI, discusses the importance of preparation for an interview—specifically in regards to the environment and room setup.

Many interviewers will invest a majority of their time in strategizing the conversation, but often times will forget the importance of setting the room up correctly. Distractions such as posters on the wall, evidence or even family pictures in an office could be an obstacle in the interviewer’s path to obtaining the truth.

It is important to remove all of these distractions, or at a minimum, set up the room in a way that minimizes the subjects view of these items. It is also vitally important in a non-custodial conversation that the subject is free to leave at any time.

Every loss prevention investigator should strive to enhance their investigative interviewing skills as part of an ongoing commitment to best-in-class interviewing performance. This includes holding ourselves to an elite standard of interview and interrogation training that is ethical, moral and legal while demanding excellence in the pursuit of the truth. The International Association of Interviewers (IAI) and Wicklander-Zulawski (WZ) provide interview and interrogation training programs and additional guidance to investigators when dealing with dishonest employees, employee theft, sexual harassment, policy violations, building rapport, pre-employment interviewing, lying, denials and obtaining a statement.

By focusing on the latest information and research from experts in the field as well as academia, legal and psychological resources, these video tips provide interview and interrogation training techniques that can enhance the skill sets of professionals with backgrounds in law enforcement, loss prevention, security, asset protection, human resources, auditors or anyone looking to obtain the truth.

To learn more about interview and interrogation training and how you can further develop your professional skill sets, visit or

This post was originally published in 2016 and was updated September 11, 2017. 

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