In search of media training

In this busy and fast moving world what you say first when you are put in front of the camera will last. The chances of a camera being put in front of your face are high as we all have the means to do it in the palm of our hands.

Yet it seems that the good old-fashioned media training has, for many, dropped off the priority list. Perhaps we think that people know what to do?

A prime example of when media training and strong PR support could have made a difference was Oliver Townend at this weekend’s Badminton three day event. For the non-horsey this is one of the highlights of the eventing calendar and attracts significant numbers of viewers as it is shown on the BBC.

This year the top rider Oliver Townend was given an official warning after he was judged to have over-used the whip on his horses. When approached at the conclusion of the competition he was unrepentant and proceeded to talk about it as a job and he would do what he had to do to win. The words sparked further anger and discussion about his sportsmanship and horsemanship.

Today he published an apology and back tracked on the comments he had made less than 24 hours before. So where was his advice and had he ever had media training?

It is more important now than ever before to have been through some thorough media training that will test you against expected scenarios. After all as a professional rider you are likely to face criticism of your riding at some point. This is an investment for the future as a poor performance is likely to impact on your business whether you are small or large.

There are many examples where media training seems to have been ignored or forgotten including the CEO of Sainsbury’s and his singing. In fact you can see it every day in the news so as a communicator I would recommend reviewing interviews and making sure those you work with have been given relevant media training.

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