If you’re a football fan this is a great time of year. Unless you’re a Jets fan like me, but that’s for another conversation. The playoffs are upon us and with that comes pressure and tension. And if you don’t believe that, just watch a reporter interview a coach before they run off the field at halftime.
If the coach is losing, that can be a tough interview. If you’re a fearless reporter (or even if you’re terrified of Patriots’ coach Bill Belichick) here’s what you need to remember: you have every right to ask a difficult question. That’s your job, and if you don’t ask it you lose credibility. If they don’t want to answer, or if they give you a mean-spirited answer, that’s on them. You’ve done what you needed to do by asking.
For a fun little reminder of how tough coach Belichick is, check out this montage.
Remember Bill Parcells? I once got lectured by coach Parcells when I asked him about changing the losing culture of the locker room. But it was a good question, it needed to be asked, and we used the answer. The point is, if you’re a journalist, be confident when you ask tough questions, just make sure they’re well thought out. Stand your ground and you’ll end up earning respect from your colleagues, the viewers, and quite possibly the person you’re interviewing.
If you’d like to learn more about hosting and interviewing, just reach out to me here.