6 steps for media training technical staff

Some employees would rather get a root canal than talk to the media. If it’s your job to prepare them for an interview with a reporter, this handy guide will help.

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If I asked that question of a company’s technical staff, they would most likely choose the latter.

Take Jack Zeepfield, for instance. Jack works as an engineer for a national firm, with a concentration on designing seismically resistant buildings and ensuring they meet the codes. Jack is great one-on-one with clients, and he’s technically brilliant. But put him in a media interview and he loses all his confidence. He becomes shy and freezes up, consumed by the fear of “saying the wrong thing.”

Despite the fear that Jack and others like him possess, media interviews help establish your brand as an expert. As a result, saying “no” is not your best option.

Here are some coaching and training tricks that you can use to help the Jacks of your firm have a successful interview:

1. Remind them of their talent and importance

Even though Jack has been designing and making recommendations to clients for seismically resistant buildings for years, as soon as he finds out a reporter wants to interview him he asks “Why me?”

This is the first hurdle you’ll need to help Jack and others like him overcome.

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