Clive Palmer knows how to get the media’s attention but his recent dummy spit on ABC TV did him no favours. The mining magnate and leader of the Palmer United Party walked out during a 7.30 interview with presenter Sarah Ferguson. Take a look.
Walking out during a live or pre-recorded interview is rarely a good idea. It’s fraught with danger for a number of reasons.
- It makes you look like you cannot handle tough questions.
- You may appear as though you have something to hide or you are running away from a particular issue.
- The walkout highlights the issue you got defensive about and draws even more attention to it than you would want.
- The walkout and vision of the walkout becomes the story.
- The vision may end up being played time and time again for years to come as part of Top Ten dummy spits or TV walkout lists like this recent one put together by The Sydney Morning Herald’s Patrick Begley.
The trick is, as always, to prepare properly. If you agree to do an interview on national TV, think about the likely questions you will be asked and have a go at answering them before-hand (See my tip sheet called “If you fail to plan”).
Mr Palmer should have expected some questions about the legal battle he is involved in. He agreed to the interview with Sarah Ferguson and he should have known she does not do “soft” interviews. If he had practised answering some of those tough but predictable questions he may not have lost his cool and finished the interview in a calm and controlled manner.