Here the media interviews are conducted in full public glare and everything that is stated by the interviewee goes directly to the viewers. Such interviews may be either pre-recorded or telecast live.
Obviously, the person giving the interview should be fully prepared and well informed about the topic under discussion. Quite often, in such interviews the interviewer asks a series of questions to elicit appropriate response from the interviewee. The person interviewed may not always know in advance about the range of questions that will be asked during the interview.
Any goof up or ignorance or repetitive evasion would only create a poor impression, not only about the person, but also about the organization he/she represents. The interviewee should keep the notes, if any, well organized and readily accessible, so that no time is wasted while consulting them. Further, it is desirable that the interviewee covers the main points to be conveyed without wasting much time or at the first available opportunity. One cannot be sure how the interview would progress. Interviewers can be of all kinds—good, bad and ugly. While most interviewers are considerate and friendly, there may be some who are difficult to deal with. They try to corner the interviewee and pressurize them to reveal sensitive or confidential matters that the interviewee has no intention to convey. Interviewees should be well prepared to face the interview with equanimity and poise even when the going gets tough.
It is necessary to keep the cool and desist from getting into argumentation. It is worth remembering that the interviewee has more at stake than the interviewer. It is the image of the person and the organization that suffers if the interview goes wrong. If the interviewee is not confident, it is better to stay away. Hence, it is worth emphasizing that effective media interviews bring significant publicity mileage and achieve worthwhile objective. From the interviewer’s standpoint, it is worth noting that the objective is to get the best out of the interview so that the viewers benefit. In a very friendly and progressive manner, the interviewer should elicit all relevant information.
He/she should make it a point to help and guide the interviewee in making the interview smooth and informative. For the interview to be successful, both the parties should play their respective roles in a mature way. Finally, given the limited time available, the questions and answers should be brief, clear and focussed. They owe it to the viewers, listeners and readers.