Harawira and Peters show media training skills

16 November 2011
Mana's Hone Harawira and NZ First's Winston Peters showed their media training skills on tonight's minor party leaders debate on TVNZ's Close Up programme. Known for his aggressive approach to media interviews, Harawira dampened down this tactic enough to clearly get his messages across in a highly effective way. Any media training course will highlight the need to show emotion and express yourself as much as possible. Harawira did this throughout the interview. His passion clearly came through in his voice and his arm gestures reinforced his genuine belief in his answers. He also kept his answers brief and used simple language. These are all vital elements in holding the attention of the audience. Peters also dampened down his usual confrontational approach. This was effective as it allowed him to communicate more of his views rather than just criticising others. He replaced his usual condescending tone with a more positive attitude that was likely to have swung a few swinging voters his way. Most media training consultants recommend this positive approach as it usually resonates better with viewers than constant criticism of others. Act leader Don Brash on the other hand looked old and out of his depth from a media training standpoint. He continually had his hands on the lecturn as if it was holding him up and he failed to break down his arguements into clear media messages. But perhaps the most interesting point to come from the debate was the synergy between Harawira and Maori Party leader Tariana Turia. They agreed on almost everything including the need for a Financial Transaction Tax. From a Maori perspective, it's a pitty these two leaders and their parties will probably split the Maori vote and be far less effective as individuals than a unified force.
Filed under Media Training

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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.

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