Growing up in my cricket-crazy country as a teenager, I was not attracted to cricket but public speaking. I was intrigued by public speaking and the great orators who lived before me – it helped that the 16th president of the US was my all-time hero (Abraham Lincoln). While my peers played cricket, I listened to the wartime speeches of Sir Winston Churchill. My lifetime fascination with public speaking had begun.
At the age of 19 I joined The Colombo Toastmasters Club – at that time it was a CEOs club and the club had to pass a special resolution to permit a 19 year-old to join the club: at the time the age limit was 20. And so began my fascination with CEOs.
When you put “communication” and “CEO” together, you get CEO Communication. This is how the dots in my life connect, to use Steve Jobs’ terminology. And, as Jobs correctly said, our lives can only be understood backwards, but we have to live forwards.
I started YKG Associates in 2013 to pursue my passion – CEO Communication. And I am having a blast.
Welcome to CEO Communication!
Tv and Radio Interviews
Since both mediums are relatively similar, we will take interviews on radio and TV together. However, please note the major difference: radio captures and conveys your emotion to your listeners through your tone of voice, while TV does this by portraying your entire body – including your voice. Therefore, in TV interviews you need to be well rested and show energy and passion – because these get conveyed to your viewers.
- What is the interview all about? Is the situation/topic a positive or negative one?
- What specific information will the interviewer be looking for? Can you ask for the interviewer’s questions beforehand?
- What is my core message? Are there any sub points? If you have more than 3 main points, your message will not achieve its purpose. What do I want the interviewer to broadcast?
- Once you know the answers to the above questions, you can start preparing for the interview.
- Take to the interview your 3 main points as bullet points on note cards, so that you can refer to them in case you forget a point during the ‘crossfire’.
- It is best to formulate answers to all possible questions – especially any tough ones. And, rehearse your answers in front of a communications professional and/or a senior trusted member of your management team to ensure the words and tone are right for the situation.
- At the interview, make sure you first answer the question posed by the journalist and then immediately plug in one of your top 3 points. This technique is called “satisfy and steer” (Virgil Scudder): satisfy the journalist’s question first, and then steer the conversation to one of your main points. This is what is expected of you to add value to the conversation and steer it forward.
- If you can videotape your answers and play back, you will learn what changes to make to enhance the effectiveness of your responses. This will be invaluable in controversial/tense interviews.