Media Training For Top Executives
An important training program, every Learning & Development manager is adding to their must-have list of trainings for the top management is media training. Media training is vital and necessary for anyone with the responsibility of addressing the press. Facing a multitude of people with flashing cameras can be intimidating and may even leave one disoriented.
But with the right tools and information, you will be able to expertly guide your company spokesperson or senior management on how to deal with the media during an interview. Also, you can significantly boost your organization’s media relations efforts by reiterating the importance of media training for senior staff.
So we are going to make every L&D manager’s dream come true and share some tips on how to go about conducting a media training session.
Below are some quick tips on how to conduct a media training exercise for top executives
These tips will come in handy especially when facing situations that attract a lot of media attention.
The Basics of Media Training
Ensure there are no distractions (Set the Agenda)
Sessions need to be short and precise, so ensure that they are free of distractions. Ask your trainees to switch off their phones before the sessions start. That way, interruptions will be limited and you’ll be able to capture your audience’s attention. Ensure that everyone participates and ensure that you stay on topic with a set agenda.
Research on your trainees
Take some time to learn about your trainees and their experiences in media interviews. Find out if they have any, and use their past experiences to identify mistakes they may have made. Work on those mistakes to help them hone their skills. By learning a little about each spokesperson, you will be personalizing your interaction with them, which will help establish trust between you and them.
For those that have no experience whatsoever, come up with practical scenarios touching on their areas of expertise, to mimic an actual interview. Let them know beforehand, and allow them to prepare in whatever way they can, then use that to point out areas they need to improve on.
Talk about body language and dressing
The attentiveness of an audience is often times determined by how the speaker dresses as well as how they speak. If they are dressed in a way that elicits interest, then it is likely that their audience will be attentive and keen. On the other hand, they might find themselves being ignored simply because of their body language. Therefore, it is important to point out what the correct and expected mode of dressing and body language is.
This can be done by collecting a few short clips carrying various messages to determine whether the trainees can be able to capture anything that the interviewees are talking about. Find out at the end of the session if the body language was convincing enough or whether their attire was distracting.
Conduct a survey at the end of the session
Consider conducting a survey after the lesson, so as to know whether your trainees learned the fundamentals of media training. Ask their opinions regarding how the lesson was conducted. Find out if there are areas you may need to improve on. Provide space for them to ask additional questions that you can use to start your next session. Lastly, ensure there is accountability within the communications department so that, time spent training is as productive as possible.
Some executives may be reluctant to attend this kind of activity. However, you can get these executives to submit to media training. One effective trick is to let them watch or listen to a recording of themselves giving a media interview. By reviewing their own performance, they will quickly realize that they actually need it after all.
Need help in conducting a media training session for your senior staff? Get in touch with our team today.