Five Tips For Meetings With Media Talent

If you are leading meetings with on-air talent, keep in mind that you are entertaining for entertainers and communicating with expert communicators. Talk about a tough room!

In many meetings with broadcasters over the years, I have learned a lot through tough trial and error. Here are some of my favorite hacks for more effective, productive meetings that your star players may actually look forward to.

  1. Asking is better than telling. If a segment went too long, help the talent arrive at the answer themselves by asking, “did that segment need more airtime or would it have been better with less?” Follow up with more questions until everyone is on the same page.
  2. Let them teach. It’s called The Feynman Technique. When players have to learn and explain a concept to others, they absorb the idea instantly. Doing it on video makes it more fun. Bonus points for crazy props and creativity.
  3. Teach by example. To teach storytelling, tell great stories. To encourage preparation, show up over-prepared. Skip the “good morning” happy talk and make your first words a killer hook headline to teach immediate segment opens. Build in pattern disruptions to re-engage the audience, just as you would for an on-air show.
  4. Time Blocking. Never meet without a timed agenda. Set aside five minutes at the end for action points, setting deadlines and assigning to-dos. And aim to end your 30-minute meeting at the 25-minute mark. Everyone loves early recess.
  5. Play games. Imagine that you are teaching how to tease upcoming content segments. Print and pass out news stories and have everyone compete to see who can write the most clear, compelling tease for that story.