Takeaways from the Viral BBC Interview We Can’t Stop Watching
Written by: Jessica Emery
Have you seen it? A video of a BBC contributor whose children not-so-casually interrupt his on-air interview has gone viral, and while we can’t stop watching the hilarity ensue, we also stopped to think about what we’d do if this had happened to one of our clients.
In today’s media environment, outlets are utilizing a number of new technology tools to broadcast interviews. The introduction of Cheddar TV and Facebook Live has increased the popularity of Skype and remote guest interviews, which has led to us expanding our media training program to discuss how to prepare for these non-traditional environments. Below are a few quick takeaways for how to ensure your interview doesn’t end up taking the internet by storm in a not so flattering way.
Know your environment.
When preparing for a Skype interview that will take place in your home, office, or elsewhere, consider your surroundings before stepping into the limelight. Make sure the lighting is flattering and any clutter behind you doesn’t detract from what you are saying. Visually unappealing items in the background draw the viewer’s eye, so take the time to do a little clean up beforehand. In the case of the viral video mentioned above, consider locking your door if your kids are home to make sure they don’t come storming in during your screen time.
Know your audience.
We stress this in any interview setting, and it’s just as important for broadcast interviews. The emergence of these new channels will continue to break the mold, so double check that your talking points are geared toward the audience you are addressing. Cheddar and Facebook Live target millennials, while traditional outlets like CNBC and Fox Business—who have also started to conduct Skype-style interviews—are geared toward more experienced investors.
Know your technology.
Unless you have an on-site studio at your office, chances are you are working with a web-camera. Do a test drive with a family member, colleague or PR team to know where the camera is angled, how you should be sitting and if you need to adjust your lighting. Have your Skype account set up beforehand and check your internet connection to avoid any glitches.
At the end of the day, remember that Murphy’s Law can always come into play. Anything that can happen, will happen. There’s no such thing as too much preparation when your reputation and credibility are on the line.
Why Lasting Change Is Hard
Before we had any children, my wife and I lived in the heart of Dallas. One day, on our way back to our house, we were driving down Skillman Avenue when we were caught in a sudden torrential downpour.
The rain was coming down incredibly hard, which wouldn’t have been a problem if the storm drains were equipped to handle that much water. Instead, the road itself filled with water faster than we could have anticipated. Quickly, the water rose up the side of our car. Trying not to panic, we realized that we could not continue and would need to turn around and get to higher ground.
Water rising up the side of your car door is the kind of roadblock you might not expect to encounter, but when you do, it’s formidable. We couldn’t drive through it or even around it. We had to deal with it quickly or face serious consequences.
When we’re trying to implement change in our own lives, it’s important to identify and plan for common roadblocks to lasting change.
The first and, in my opinion, most important roadblock to lasting change is not addressing the real issue.
Let’s say you wake up in the middle of the night with a sore throat. You’re annoyed by feeling sick but your throat really hurts, so you get up and spray a little Chloraseptic in your mouth and drift off to sleep. When you wake up the next day, you still have a sore throat, so you pop in a cough drop and go about your day.
The change you’re making – using a numbing agent – might work if you’ve only got a cold, but if it’s strep throat, you’re not addressing the real problem. Only an antibiotic will cure what ails you, even if Chloraseptic will keep the pain at bay for a while.
Just like how more information is needed to diagnose your sore throat than one feeling, problems you encounter in your life or business require diagnostics, too. Figuring out the real problem – not just your most apparent needs – requires some introspection and a little bit of time.
Here are eight questions to ask when you need to discover the root cause, courtesy of MindTools.com:
- What do you see happening?
- What are the specific symptoms?
- What proof do you have that the problem exists?
- How long has the problem existed?
- What is the impact of the problem?
- What sequence of events leads to the problem?
- What conditions allow the problem to occur?
- What other problems surround the occurrence of the central problem?
Once you have your answers to these key questions, you can’t stop there. Your vantage point is skewed from your own perspective. You’re going to want to ask someone else to evaluate the problem at hand with the same questions and then compare your answers.
If you and all of the partners at your firm have similar answers, you’ll know you’re on the right track. If you wind up with wildly different ideas, I suggest seeking the advice of someone outside your organization. Fresh eyes can make all the difference in understanding a problem.
I often talk about being ‘too close’ to understand. You’ve probably heard the illustration about a group of people standing by an elephant with blindfolds on, trying to describe what they’re experiencing. Depending on what part of the elephant you’re next to, you’re going to have different observations.
But someone outside of that elephant’s cage can clearly identify the elephant.
The first key to making a lasting change is to make sure you’ve addressed the real problem and are looking for authentic change.
Next time, we’ll address the second major roadblock to creating last change.
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