What is the best way to prepare yourself for a future media crisis or some threat to your organization’s reputation? Here it is: be more interesting on a regular basis.
A big problem that many organizations have, whether it is an oil or gas company or a financial institution, is that they never talk to the general broadcast news media for months, years, and at times, half a decade! So now, when there is a crisis such as an eruption, an explosion, or the death of an elite, it will be the first time the media will have even thought about this organization for years. When people don’t know you, it is a lot easier to be tough, confrontational, and treat you like the bad guy who has been hiding.
You can solve a lot of these problems by not waiting for a crisis to hit and putting out interesting and useful information out to the media on a regular basis. You need to make yourself available to the news media on a regular basis so that they know who you are, get more comfortable with you, and it also proves your media abilities.
If you only go in front of the media in a crisis after ten years, you are going to be scared to death. If you give regular interviews, you will be confident. I practice what I preach. I never turn down any interview or speaking opportunity regardless of time or place. If I am giving an interview on a channel in Middle East about controversies in Hollywood, I probably will not get any clients from that but I will gain experience.
If I am doing it, so can you.