Pete Burdon

Pete is a leading New Zealand media trainer and regular blogger for his company, Media Training NZ . He has helped leaders from all sectors of society communicate with the media and other stakeholders. Pete is a former daily newspaper reporter and press secretary in the New Zealand government. From these roles, he understands the media process from both sides of the camera.

ACC make another serious media training mistake

13 September 2012
The first thing we tell our media training clients is that their organisation must have a single designated spokesperson on any issue with a competent substitute ready to step in at any time. This is for two reasons. Firstly, it prevents mixed messages getting through to the media. And secondly, it's because anyone who talks to the media must have been through a media training course. Over the last week, ACC have failed on both counts. Firstly, when finally agreeing to...

Hone shows media training skills by use of the N word

6 September 2012
Hone Harawira may infuriate many people, but his use of the word ‘nigger’ this week shows how his media training skills keep him in the headlines. By saying on Twitter that “John Key can tell his house nigger boys what to do” people were clearly going to think he was talking about the Maori Party leadership. But soon he distanced himself from that, saying he was referring to National MPs. From a media training standpoint, this was a clever tactic, although...

Media Training tip for Louisa Wall

31 August 2012
She’s been effective at getting her views about same sex marriage across, but there’s one piece of media training advice that would make Louisa Wall be heard more clearly. She needs to ditch the big earrings. In every television appearance, she wears large earrings that constantly wobble when she moves her head. This can distract people from what she is saying. These have not been seen since the days of Christine Rankin. We tell our media training clients to dress conservatively...

Events highlight importance of media training for school leaders

24 August 2012
Events of the past few weeks and issues that will soon confront schools are why principals and board chairs should all have a media training course under their belt. Tragic deaths of pupils and horrific sexual abuse by teachers have suddenly thrust a few schools into the national media spotlight. Some have done well from a media training perspective, while others have been conspicuous by their absence. Often people learn the hard way that media training should be a fundamental part...

Media Training tip for Beast of Blenheim Lawyer

17 August 2012
He’s done an OK job in a difficult position, but there is one vital media training tip that will help Beast of Blenheim Lawyer Andrew McKenzie come across a lot better of TV. Improving his body language is the best media training advice he could take at the moment. He may have conflicting personal views on the debate about what should happen to his client after his release. If so, this is showing because he is communicating conflicting signals. His words...

Ben Fouhy commits cardinal media training sin

10 August 2012
Our media training advice to athletes who are overwhelmed by the emotion of a disappointment is to take a deep breath before criticising others in-front of journalists. Ben Fouhy was clearly frustrated after he failed to make the final of his kayaking event in London. But from a media training and sporting perspective, his outburst of abuse against the funding body, Sport New Zealand, did no-one any favours. It was bad publicity for the sport in New Zealand, adding to earlier...

Olympics offer important media training lesson

3 August 2012
Before we begin our media training sessions, many clients believe that journalists are always looking for negative stories and are never interested in the positive. This is a common misperception and that’s why many people avoid the media at all cost, even if it’s to the detriment of their organisation. The Olympics provide an important media training lesson here, because 90 percent of the media coverage is positive, particularly from the New Zealand journalists in London covering their countrymen and women....

Media Training advice for Maggie Barry

27 July 2012
As a former TV presenter, Maggie Barry shouldn’t need much media training advice. She knows what journalists look for. So she must have known that her attack on the childless Jacinda Ardern’s credibility in commenting on paid parental leave would make the news. From a media training standpoint, the use of conflict or the hint of an attack is a great way to get publicity. If that was Barry’s aim, she certainly succeeded. But this is unlikely as the subsequent publicity...

Media training important for Olympians

21 July 2012
Media training is something high performance athletes should undertake so they can maximise their own reputations and that of their sports when in-front of the World’s TV cameras. It will be plain to see who is prepared for the media onslaught when the Olympics get into full swing. Those who have been through media training will appear conversational with reporters, and not be afraid to express their true feelings about their performance. This is what people want to see. But many...

Paula Bennett shows her media training skills

3 July 2012
While media training is all about mastering media interviews, Social Development Minister Paula Bennett showed this week that there are times when requests by journalists can and should be turned down. Mrs Bennett’s daughter Ana resigned from her role at the Waipareira Trust, which is locked in a legal battle with the Government over the decision to withdraw funding for the provision of the Family Start programme. The battle is being fought by Mrs Bennett’s own Ministry. Anna said she would...
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My Latest Blog Posts

28 April 2022
Luxon's tax question problem and possible answer
3 February 2022
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16 December 2021
Why Greg Foran is my Media Communicator of the Year

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PO Box 105721
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PO Box 36-251
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Email: Pete Burdon
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