Handling Tough News Media Interviews




There’s non doubt about it, handling a tough electronic news media interview is not easy. I was reading only this morning how the Australian Federal Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has been shirking such interviews when compared to Prime Minister Gillard. This year Abbott has appeared twice on The 7.30 Report compared to six times for Gillard; no appearances on Q&A but one for Gillard; one on Sky Agenda compared with four for Gillard and none on Meet The Press where Gillard appeared once.

Looking at the softer options, the tables are turned. Abbott has appeared 10 times on The Today Show while the Prime Minister has turned up only twice. Abbott also comes into his own on talkback and shock-jock radio with 16 appearances on 2GB (2 for Gillard); nine on MTR (0); 5 on 2UE (1); 9 on 2SM (2) and three each on 3AW.

This fear of Abbott’s for tough electronic news media interviews is not his alone. Most business people we media train share that fear. Those who undertake our media training workshops lose a lot of that fear because we put them through very, very tough interviews that are so realistic we’ve had participants not want to do a second interview. Not surprisingly, when they do, they give a much better performance thereby proving the value of media training when it’s carried out properly by people who have a strong history both in the media and in media training.

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