If nothing else, lockdown has shown us what’s really essential in our lives and what isn’t. And the concept of key workers has really put industries such as the energy sector quite rightly in the spotlight. Suddenly the ability to just turn on a switch and be able to connect with colleagues and loved ones has become a real lifeline.
There’s a huge amount of goodwill and opportunity here for the energy sector to use in their engagement with the media and the public. As life and business starts to get back to normal (we hope!) using your key messages appropriately will be vital.
We’ve worked with a number of energy companies over the past two decades, helping them develop their skills in media awareness and broadcasting or supporting their public consultation process. Our Broadcast Skills training course includes:
- Recognising a media opportunity: Sometimes they come to you, sometimes you can create them. Think creatively about what you can offer, particularly in terms of interview or photo opportunity and use it effectively
- Identifying your key messages: Whatever the opportunity, an interviewee needs to know their key messages. Work with us to identify your priorities and learn how you can weave those into your media opportunity
- People: The media love a good people story, so a fantastic photo, a great interview or anything with human interest will help get their attention
- Preparation: Our training will give you the ‘as real as it gets’ experience to enable you to respond properly to difficult questions.
Energy companies and organisations also need to be prepared to respond to the media in a crisis.
A death off-shore, an industrial accident, an employment dispute – a crisis can take many forms. Many organisations within the energy sector will already have risk management procedures and crisis plans but if something was to happen, would you know how to deal with the media if they were camping on your doorstep?
Many occupations within the energy sector are high-risk and it is therefore essential that energy companies have sufficient crisis plans in place that include a media element to protect reputation.
With your whole company’s reputation and future at stake, handling the media in times of crises can be a tricky and delicate matter. Crises often come as a nasty shock and can be extremely stressful, so here are some important tips to help you manage the situation:
- Know the facts. Don’t make blanket statements to the press – or no comment at all – get your key messages in order so your response can’t be disputed
- Have empathy. With many crisis situations other people are involved – their well-being, families and finances may be at stake. Take their situation seriously and always respond in an appropriate manner
- Don’t wait! When a crisis hits, act fast. Get your best team together, formulate an action plan and implement.
With the support of a specialist agency such as Mosaic and by ensuring spokespeople are media trained, the fall-out can be managed to reduce the impact.
Both these courses are available from Mosaic Media Training. Our tailored courses are designed particularly for the energy sector by former journalists.