Archives for October 2014

What Not to Wear on TV

After beating the Baltimore Orioles in Game 3 of the American League Championship, putting Kansas City on the brink of the World Series, Royals pitcher Jeremy Guthrie created a firestorm of protest without saying a word.

Playing off Chris Brown’s rap song “Loyal,” Mr. Guthrie wore a T-shirt to the post-game press conference that read “These O’s Ain’t Royal.” Not only did the shirt infuriate the opposing team—the vulgar nature of its reference offended many fans as well.

Guthrie wearing his controversial undershirt (courtesy of USA TODAY)

Guthrie wearing his controversial undershirt (courtesy of USA TODAY)

Making the situation even trickier for Mr. Guthrie is that he spent five seasons with the Orioles from 2007-11.  It is not always what you say, but how you say it that can leave others speechless.

With the proper media training in communication skills, Mr. Guthrie would have learned that press conferences, on-camera interviews and even Youtube are visual mediums and branded or slogan T-shirts act as billboards of advertising. It’s why companies invest so much in branding athletes with their logos!

Mr. Guthrie, who is noted for his distinctive T-shirts, said he would be more careful in choosing his apparel in the future. In an attempt to douse the flames caused by his racy attire, Mr. Guthrie stated “I’ve already apologized to a number of people because there was no intention to offend. ”

Whether it’s a casual conversation or a Major League interview—avoid starting a fire with your attire.

A+ for Characteristic Candor

Personalizing a presentation with candor is one of the C’s of good communication. Other C’s include: Conversational, Convincing and Compassionate which help to create a speaker’s Charisma.  As Bloomberg News reported on a recent Chicago conference for the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing and Care, Ben Bernanke was refreshingly and characteristically candid:

“I recently tried to refinance my mortgage and was unsuccessful in doing so.

I’m not making that up.”

Former Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke (courtesy of LA Times)

Former Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke (courtesy of the LA Times)

If the two-term, former Chairman of the US Federal Reserve can’t refinance his home, who can?

In the aftermath of the 2000’s housing bubble burst, lending institutions have become extremely cautious and, according to Mr. Bernanke, much too limiting on their lending standards.

” Tactful candor and simple honesty is very refreshing in today’s world of bluffing and hype,” our CEO Anne Ready writes in her latest book from Career Press, Off the Cuff/What to Say at a Moment’s Notice. But she cautions not waiting until you arrive and step to the podium or are asked a question, to decide what you can reveal.

“Ahead of time, explore with yourself and your company, what you/they are willing to share.

If you can’t give your audience or interviewers everything, which in most cases you shouldn’t,

know what you can give them to make a story or anecdote colorful,

interesting and worth listening to or writing about.”

No matter what your experience or level of presentation skills, use Candor and the C’s of Communication to deliver your message effectively… as evidenced by Mr. Bernanke’s candid constitution.