It can be tempting if you find something that works well to keep doing it that way. With media interviews, a standard template, while comforting on home ground, can actually get you into trouble.
This is especially true if you don’t adapt when you speak to different journalists from different countries.
Global CEO’s and Media Interviews
In reality, CEO’s need to have more than one approach if they are to cope with the full range of media interview situations they are likely to face. They also have to learn how to interact with a wide range of media. The chances are one minute they could be on camera, the next talking by phone, the next standing in front of a crowd.
It is also true that the media in different counties have different approaches and research practices so being prepared for the differences in international journalism is always an advantage.
- Journalists in America are likely to check out your social media profile before interviewing you.
- If you’re in Germany, the press can often be just as interested in your private life as they are in what’s happing with your company.
- The Swiss will often solicit third party opinions, some of which you may never even have heard of.
The truth is that, where you are being interviewed and by whom at any particular time is often beyond your control. Having a single approach can be detrimental if a journalist throws you a question from left field that you have never considered before or they have information that you previously thought unrelated.
Being prepared for Media Questions
This uncertainty can be compounded by the fact that there are so many news outlets available and not all of them are friendly. You often can’t choose who is sitting around in a press conference, for example, and what one journalist hears can be completely different to how another perceives it.
Clear communication is not just about getting the facts right, it’s about understanding the impact your words have for certain audiences. You can think you’ve delivered a comprehensive and clear answer to a particular question but next day find that your words seem to have been twisted around and influenced by something you wrote on your Twitter timeline two years ago.
Media Training for CEO’s
Media training for anyone likely to come into the contact with the media is a good idea and it is even more important for CEO’s and those that advise them. Media training will arm you with the tools you need to survive in the world of public relations. Making sure that you are equally capable of giving an interview to camera or by phone to a radio station, for instance, helps ensure you come across as competent and knowledgeable at all times. For Global CEO’s you can also ensure you have the knowledge and skills to navigate giving interviews to international media outlets.
There’s no doubt that a standard approach has plenty of pitfalls, especially if your business has a global reach. Understanding the basics and culture of journalists in this country or that region is important if you want to give yourself a head start. To discuss a range of media training options that can be customised to the needs of your business or organisation talk to Hawkeye media today.