In my career days, I did my fair share of media training and interviewing of subjects for television news stories. Some folks were pros at nailing that 30-second sound bite concept. Others? Not so much.
For those who had a harder time grasping the concept, I could spend hours asking questions in different ways in an attempt to draw out that succinct statement that television stations might find compelling enough to include in their nightly broadcasts. There was nothing worse than that passionate researcher with a mind-blowing discovery who just couldn’t understand why their entire white paper couldn’t be the answer to the “why is this so significant” question. I think I’m still working on the Vitamin D deficiency I must have earned sitting in a dark edit room trying to find 30-second on-message magic in the middle of a 5 minute answer.
While attempting to have a conversation with the hubby during dinner the other night, we were constantly interrupted by a babbling five month old who is discovering the throw-it-on-the-floor-so-someone-has-to-retrieve-it game and a boisterous three-year-old who might not have anything to say, but certainly doesn’t want anyone else carrying the conversation. The hubby and I somehow managed to share our days in fits and starts between babbles, nonsensical knock-knock jokes and rattle tosses.
It was then that I had a light bulb moment. I’m going to rent my children out for media training. If a spokesperson can manage to get a clear, concise and compelling statement out before my kids interrupt them, they will be big 3 national newscast ready.
I wonder if that violates any child labor laws? Something to look into…