Reporters and media of all kinds are inevitable sources of stress for many crisis management situations, but that doesn’t mean it’s healthier to shut them out. With the modern 24/7 news cycle and literally millions of places for information to be shared even small issues often mean contacts from media outlets today. The next time the media is reaching out to you, remember these four tips from our expert team of crisis management consultants.
- If you really are severely pressed for time, put on your “calm and confident” face and try telling the reporter that you’d absolutely love to grant an interview but there just isn’t enough time right now, and would they like to get their story via phone or email in the near future?
- If a certain subject needs to stay under wraps, pull that “calm and confident” face out again and tell them you can’t talk about that just yet, but as soon as you’re able they’ll be the first to know.
- If they’re pressing for an in-person interview and you’d rather be in control, put on that face once again and tell them you would just love to do an email interview instead.
- If legal issues really do prevent you from discussing a specific topic, let the reporter know you wish you could, but that your attorney has advised against discussing anything related to litigation, but perhaps some statement would be released at a later point..
A flat, “no comment” should almost never be your answer to members of the media, and strike the condescending smirk and angry scowl from your facial vocabulary. There are many cases where you can, and should, deny a request for further explanation, but always do your very best to offer an alternative, and (noticing a theme yet?) make sure you look calm and confident doing it!