One of my favourite reads this year has been Rob Burley’s “Why is this Lying Bastard lying to me?’

 He’s a tv editor with more than 25 years’ experience at the top of his profession and his book focuses on the seemingly endless tussle between national politicians and the media.

“…politics on television has always involved deflection, distraction and sometimes outright lying.

Politicians have always tried to rig the game by setting the rules of engagement and threatening reprisals for perceived unfairness.

There has always been a lying bastard tendency.” [page 393, ‘Why is this Lying Bastard lying to me?’ by Rob Burley]

Burley is writing predominantly about MPs  but increasingly senior leadership teams in industry and the public sector are required to give interviews to the media, often at very short notice.

Politics is different

I advise clients NEVER to try to copy the style of national politicians when being interviewed. They operate under a different set of rules to a vastly different agenda. Many feel that if a slight chink in their armour is revealed – say when their party makes a mistake – then they will lose their job and the whole pack of cards will come tumbling down.

Burley’s book has many examples of this from the days  of Margaret Thatcher to present day politicians such as Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer.

He’s particularly adept at explaining how the most effective political interviewers from Brian Walden, Emily Maitlis, Beth Rigby and Andrew Neil tried to get them to answer a straight question honestly, via a whole series of tactics and approaches.

Facing the cameras

Politicians often seem like they operate in a completely different universe to the rest of us and yet when the cameras and the microphones are facing you it can seem like you’re an under-pressure politician being put under under the spotlight by a load of aggressive bullies.

In an era where information spreads at the speed of light, the art of effective media communication has become paramount for many.

For corporate leaders facing public scrutiny, the ability to handle the media with finesse is essential and that’s where we come in.

At Mick Ord Media  we guide and support individuals and organizations through the challenging landscape of media relations and public perception via our intensive media training workshops – getting you and your team to tackle the really difficult issues in a credible and authentic way, rather than brush it aside or ignore like so many of the characters in Rob Burley’s book.

Expect the best, prepare for the worst

When a crisis strikes in a company, local authority or public utility, the way leaders address the situation can make or break their image.

Our workshops equip individuals with the tools to manage and mitigate the fallout of adverse events.

A well-crafted crisis communication strategy can help organisations weather storms of controversy, ensuring their messages are clear, empathetic, and authentic.

By addressing concerns head-on and demonstrating accountability, senior leaders can regain public trust even in the face of seemingly insurmountable challenge.

We provide an immersive learning experience that equips individuals and teams with the skills to navigate the complexities of media interaction, taking a deep dive into all aspects of media communication, from preparing for an interview ( the most important bit) , to honing body language and crafting powerful narratives.

By learning how to communicate effectively and authentically, you can transcend the perception of being mere figureheads or spokespeople and become genuine advocates for your brand or organisation.

In the digital age, where news can be shared globally in seconds, communication must be swift, precise, and authentic.

We equip professionals with the skills to manage their messaging across various platforms, ensuring a consistent and coherent narrative that resonates with both internal and external audiences.

Media training is an indispensable tool in navigating the complex world of public communication.

Crisis communications, media training workshops and corporate comms are all integral components of this practice and our training provides the knowledge and skills needed to thrive in an increasingly interconnected and scrutinizing world, whether you’re part of a corporation trying to regain trust, facing a reputational crisis or part of a team aiming to sharpen your media interaction skills just in case a crisis looms.