Recently we conducted a media training summit for the leadership team of a regional educational institution. Each team member has experience being interviewed by the media — either at this institution and/or at institutions where they previously worked. The goal of the summit was to remind them of the importance of preparing for interviews and to provide basic techniques for effectively communicating with reporters. Most, if not all, of these techniques were new to them.
Once again, the technique that resonated the most with each team member, as well as with the majority of other executives we’ve trained over the years, is “bridging” — a simple transition tool to move from one issue to another such negative to positive. Phrases such as “I think what you’re really asking is…” or “Let me just add…” are just two examples of how to effectively bridge to answer a reporter’s question with information you want to provide.
We welcome the opportunity to tell you more about our media training summit and how it can be tailored to meet your specific situation. As they told us after the session, there’s nothing like a formal media training exercise — even if it’s a refresher — to feel really prepared.