Skillset New Zealand Blog

Ideas to help your team develop personally and professionally.

Normally—as one Australian reporter on the West Coast put it—we eat sausage without knowing what goes into making it. What happened at Pike River mine has forced us to notice what goes into making a news item when tragedy strikes, particularly the actions of reporters, good, bad and ugly.

I feel strongly about this because I was a reporter on the Erebus disaster, when the families got the final, crushing news. The phrase ‘media vultures’ was used then, as it is now.

Suppose you've just made a point in a media interview, and the interviewer says, "So what you're saying is..." Count on it, whatever words follow that, your meaning will be modified - anything from a harmless nuance to an emotionally-loaded torpedo that will sink your career. So, when should you say Yes?

About Michael Brown

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Michael is a senior trainer with Skillset, based in Christchurch.

He is a leading authority on training in presentation and news media skills in New Zealand. He has special expertise in how to present emotionally-charged topics to challenging audiences. Michael has trained thousands of New Zealanders and worked with people who speak on behalf of some of the country's largest organisations.

Michael is a prolific author and his books on speaking and working with the media are in their fourth editions.

Speaking Easy: how to speak to your audiences with confidence and authority

Media Easy: how to handle the news media with confidence and authority

One of Michael's books is about his family's adventures sailing in the Pacific.

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