Media training is almost always part of the customized curriculum I design if I’m hired to train a Leadership Team or Board of Directors. I even include it in my executive speech coaching because I think it’s that important. It’s vital that every Senior Executive and Director in your organization is comfortable and confident in front of the media – particularly on camera. Here are three simple but effective tips to share with your team:
Dress to whisper not to shout. You need to wear clothes on camera that are professional, make you look and make you feel confident. Having said that, it’s important that your clothes aren’t so loud that I notice them first – I should notice you, not your clothes. So aim for understated elegance. Also watch the cost of your clothes, sometimes wearing an ultra-expensive designer label on-camera sends the wrong message.
It’s vital that every Senior Executive and Director in your organization is comfortable and confident in front of the media – particularly on camera. ~ Narges Nirumvala
Watch your posture. Stand up straight or sit up straight. Remember some jackets and coats can make you look like you’re slouching, so watch for that too. Good posture is the first step to strong body language and a better executive presence. I’ve seen pictures of me slouching and I didn’t even know I was doing it – so get someone you trust to make some observations of you in this area.
Use your eyes to communicate. Your eyes can communicate so much if you know how – they can smile, you can show displeasure, compassion, anger and they can even cry. Use your eyes to show how you feel while you’re speaking. Sometimes when people are nervous on-camera they get what I call “frozen face” where they show no emotion and it makes them look cold and insensitive. You need to show the general public that you’re a human being and feel the gravity of the situation, particularly if it’s a crisis.
This is an area where I believe strongly that organizations must get training for all key players that may need to answer questions from the media. So get your Communications Department to do training in-house or hire an expert like me, either way get it done. One wrong statement or in-appropriate facial expression in front of a camera and it’s all over the world via social media in about 5-minutes! It can take months to repair that damage. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Called ‘The Secret Weapon’ by one journalist, Narges Nirumvala is a world renowned leadership communication expert and international speaker. She is the CEO of ExecutiveSpeak Coaching International and author of the bestselling book “Capture the Spotlight”. Narges works with executives and leadership teams to help them find their authentic voice and speak the language of leadership. Narges has received numerous accolades; most recently she was nominated for the 2016 Wendy McDonald Awards as Community Catalyst.