As the leader of your organization and expert in your field, you have the opportunity to share your knowledge and expertise with the general public via the media. It is normal to feel nervous; however, think of a media interview as an opportunity to strut your stuff and better position your organization.
Whether it’s for a newspaper article or television segment, these tips will help you succeed in any media interview.
Prepare your talking points. Know the topics you want to cover beforehand. Work with the reporter to see if you can get the questions before the interview. This will help you strategize the best way to incorporate key sound bites. Also, bring a factsheet with you to help you remember important information and specific details such as how many employees work in your organization or last year’s sales numbers.
Be charismatic. As a leader, you’re probably already a natural at public speaking, but there are a few things to keep in mind. Media interviews should be treated like a relaxed and friendly conversation. The best way to respond to interview questions is to avoid jargon, be succinct and brief, and of course, smile.
Practice makes perfect. Just because you know what you want to say doesn’t mean it’s going to come out as intended. One of the biggest fears of media interviews is being misquoted; therefore, it is important to practice, practice, practice. Rehearse your talking points with your team to hear how they sound out loud because, while they make sense to you, it might not to the audience. You should also videotape the rehearsal so you can hear yourself and watch your body language.
What’s the most stressful element of giving media interviews? Which tip above has helped you the most in the past? Or what would you add?
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