Labour should reconsider media training for Shearer

Posted February 25, 2012

Reports that Labour leader David Shearer will not seek external media training advice is a decision that must be reconsidered if he is to reconnect his Party with its traditional support base. Many leaders from all walks of life are unaware how media interviews are unlike any other conversation. Without professional media training, most of these people fail to connect properly with their stakeholders. Shearer will risk that possibility if he fails to grasp the benefits of media training. While he has admitted he doesn't want to look like a politician, he still needs to communicate effectively through the media if he wants people to vote for him in 2014. It's true that John Key's popularity is partially because he doesn't seem like your average politician. But the difference is that he can communicate well through the media. He can get his point across in a matter of seconds, but Shearer finds this difficult. If he doesn't sort this out, he will never get his party's messages out. He needs to remember that only snippets of media interviews actually make it into the subsequent news stories. He needs to make sure they are the snippets he wants used. This is so important for a political leader. By taking part in some professional media training, he will learn how to do this along with a number of other important interview techniques. He could then become a serious contender for Key's job. But if he doesn't, he may be even less effective at reaching Labour's traditional grass routes support than his predecessor.
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