The inaugural Earthshot awards ceremony rang out last weekend, fuelling climate conversations among global audiences. The Royal headliners and rock star performances, couldn’t outshine the creative ingenuity of the winners who each earned £1m to expand their climate saving plans.
Tips from media interviews with Senior Business Leaders: a year of learning in the virtual room
Global Media and Entertainment; Health, Sports and Fitness; High Street Brands, City Law Firms and Entrepreneurs. Over the last 12 months we’ve trained senior leaders from some of the world’s biggest and most successful brands.
When we pivoted to virtual media training, we never imagined the roll call of people we would work with. And yet a year on, we have had a privileged and unique insight into a diverse roster of senior leaders from many industries.
Listening to and watching interviews is my lockdown fix. News bulletins, current affairs and podcasts – I am compelled to tune in. And as a media trainer, I tell myself this is a healthy, if unconventional daily diet.
The definition of a successful interview depends on whether you are reporting the story or ‘in the chair’. Every journalist has an agenda and as I always explain in media training, interviewees too, need a plan to make themselves heard. And tuning into 3 recent interviews, I heard three people, in very different circumstances, making a success of their air time.
As a BBC producer I heard many outstanding female voices – from presenter Anne Robinson cross-examining CEOs on BBC Watchdog, to numerous female Executive Producers standing up to big bullying businesses trying to kill a great story.
I was part of production teams crafting complex programmes in challenging circumstances. These experiences shaped my own voice, including in the media training room, where I support people preparing to go on the record or in day to day interactions providing crisis management and corporate communications support.
Good biscuits plated up on arrival and participants hovering at the door ahead of schedule. Throw in a tailored crisis simulation – part challenge, part playing to individual strengths – and all the positive omens are there for a good training day.
We were really excited to see Eat Natural on Inside the Factory, BBC2.
In 2019, the wonderful Hannah Norris at Nourish PR asked us to come in and help boost the team and their confidence as they prepared to talk to a BBC TV documentary crew and Greg Wallace during the 2 days long filming for Inside the Factory.
Broadcasts by journalists, spokespeople and celebrities from their living room and virtual meetings are the ‘new’ normal. This way of communicating requires adjustment for many. So, whether speaking to press or colleagues remotely, here are some tips to make the virtual format work for remote interviews and meetings.
As TV news anchors around the world set up studios in their homes with teleprompters, specialist lighting, makeup and HD broadcast cameras; interviewees must also up their game. "News" needs experts, spokespeople and human stories more than ever and the best people you will see and hear, the ones who get invited back, have received media & presentation training – even if they are speaking from a laptop in their living room. Continue reading “Media & Presentation Training 2.0”
“Those difficult situations, they don’t frighten me… never waste a good crisis. When you have a crisis, then you have the fantastic platform for change”.
The refreshing perspective of Airbus Chief Executive Guillaume Faury in the Sunday Times, provides a timely excuse to consider the good that comes out of the bad, for crisis comms professionals.
Prince Andrew would have done well to follow the Green Cross Code as he stepped into the path of the oncoming Newsnight interview. There has since been much scrutiny of the Royal’s press advisors and why they failed to follow the basics when it comes to media handling in a global reputational storm.
Taking time to stop, look and listen to external communications advisors during a crisis is critical to long term reputation. Like a friendly Green Man, people like us, reiterate life outside the crisis bubble and wider public perception both in the moment and the hours, days and weeks to follow.
Most people over 30, remember the well-known washing powder ad, which challenged unsuspecting mums to a live clothes wash, to see whether the product delivered its ‘whiter than whites’ promise. This was a filmed doorstep where everyone was in on the gag. Viewers understood it was an advert, just as the at-home victim knew their kitchen would appear on national TV. Continue reading “Doing the doorstep challenge – can you win when cameras arrive unannounced?”
Over the last few weeks there seems to have a been a flurry of “recorded statements” in response to major crises. To be clear, rather than put someone forward to be interviewed by the press, the boss records a statement and it’s posted on the website or via social channels.
In among political break-ups and breakaways, a commitment to clean up take-aways is hardly big news – at first glance.
And yet the pledge by Just Eat to remove any of the 29,000 UK restaurants registered with them, who score a zero food hygiene rating, gives food for thought. The food ordering app is investing £1m in hygiene and safety standards. Restaurants that fail to make the grade by 01 May will be kicked off the app and any new entries must score ‘generally satisfactory’ for hygiene.
When I first joined Facebook I trusted the platform and genuinely thought it was the best thing since sliced bread. It was so interactive, I could store and share photos of my young kids with friends (yes, I was that parent) and catch up on what everyone was up to from the comfort of my then small London flat. A few years later it seemed to be THE place to get breaking news which was always relevant to what I was interested in, thank you algorithms.
Over the last 10 years though that trust has been eroded. Continue reading “Facebook: can I trust you again? A personal perspective.”
Mangold Consultancy made a welcome return to Marlow FM’s The Buzz last week, opening 2019 with lively discussions about the high street, Chinese economics and speaker confidence. I was one of two guests on the weekly show, invited to look at topical business stories and forecasts for 2019. Continue reading “Radio Waves”
Since political turmoil before breakfast became the new normal in 2018, reading the runes on anything other than tea is a high stakes game. But having digested the best news round ups, here are a few boiled down forecasts to consider for crisis communications and reputation management in the year ahead.
Local newspapers have long teetered on the edge of survival, at risk of relegation to a picture postcard England past, where cub reporters cover village fetes, write the splash on local crime and all before tea time. So the announcement that local publisher Johnston Press is being bought out has triggered further analysis on the future for local news. Facebook has stepped up with a suspiciously well time announcement of £4.5m, to hire and train 80 people as community reporters. Johnston Press is reportedly one of three local publishers in conversation with the social media giant. Continue reading “The Business of Local Newspapers”
Less than a week after revelations about the financial future of Patisserie Valerie made headlines, executive chairman Luke Johnson gave an interview to the same newspaper where he regularly contributed a business column.
The move navigated some tricky reputational waters and a creeping narrative about British retail and high street horror stories. Continue reading “Pattiserie Valerie – Serves up a showstopper interview”
Viewers of the excellent Channel 4 obs doc Inside The Embassy got to follow new U.S Ambassador Woody Johnson – personal friend of Donald Trump and billionaire businessman in his own right. Continue reading “The diplomatic art of delivering the razor sandwich”