5 ways to respond to tough media questions

Preparation is crucial, of course, but there are also techniques to employ when interviews or press conferences don’t follow your planned route.

However, there may come a time when a reporter does hit you with a challenging question. Your ability to handle a tough line of questioning will play a huge role in determining the direction and outcome of the interview. If you panic and drop the ball, your brand’s image (and your own) could take a serious hit.

So, how should you react when a reporter asks a hard question?

1. Prepare yourself. First things first: You have to be prepared for your interviews. Rare is the moment where a tough question will come out of left field. If you’re in a situation where a reporter might hit you with a question you don’t like, you should probably know ahead of time. Be prepared for any and every type of question the reporter might ask, and study the reporter’s work before the interview to determine whether he/she tends to ask hard questions.

2. Attack questions that lack validity. If the reporter asks a tough question that is irrelevant, inaccurate, or too personal/inappropriate, it’s well within your rights to attack the quality of the question. Don’t let yourself be bullied.

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