07850 188620 01273 606246

So, where do you stand on the great debate of the day?  Aching with sympathy for Warren, and thinking maybe Faye wasn’t entirely without blame the way she just read the name without reading what else he’d just seen on that card?  Or maybe, like me, you just headed to work that morning knowing there’d only be one topic of conversation in the office that day.

It couldn’t have happened at a better moment for me.  I’ve been sniffing around for some time for a new example of a classic did-you-see-that? video clip clanger to use in my TV news themed confidence building workshops.  They’re a real ice-breaker to fire up debates about news values.  It’s been a while now since Madonna tumbled off the stage.

The lesson I’ve taken from this little fiasco came after the on-stage shambles itself.  Jordan Horowitz, the producer who’d won, and then not won, said this:  “It’s just one of those things that gets thrown at you — and you can choose to lean into it, or push away from it.”

It’s a great ‘take-away’ message about resilience for team-building workshops like mine, and I’ll be playing that very clip at my next half day event in Brighton on 21 April.  When things go wrong, and someone else seizes the prize from your grasp, it could be a chance for you to seize the moment.

The coffee was hot, the room comfortable and the numbers solid for the workshop I’d chosen to attend on strategies for growing your business.  The powerpoint was ready to go, but as I removed my coat I was quietly reassured that it didn’t look quite as exciting as the TV news themed confidence building workshops I offer.

It was a good workshop though, and here’s why.  The host didn’t claim to be what he was not.  Rob Da Costa was soft-spoken and thoughtful, a touch shy perhaps.  But that’s what I found so engaging. The blurb and introduction had spoken of years of experience, and I’m sure it was all true, but by admitting more than once that he didn’t have all the answers, that he himself was still learning, he made me listen all the more carefully to the answers he did have.

It’s a lesson I shall take to my own venture.  I’m an experienced TV journalist, not a consultant in team dynamics, resilience or confidence building in a CPD focussed human resources context.  I certainly know a thing or two about making a quick decision and hitting that evening’s deadline, night after night, but I don’t know all the jargon that may come with it.  As a reporter, I count myself a jargon buster.

I’m taking a punt that that can be a refreshingly good thing when sharing ideas on teamwork, and, having weighed up what I saw this morning, that sharing what you’re not entirely sure about can be as effective as sharing what you are.

The thrill of interviewing someone is not knowing quite what they’re going to say next.  It often proves the edgiest part of my Employability Express workshops for people in their late teens whose teachers have invited me in to try to build their self belief ahead of a job or college interview.

After a series of confidence building games, we reach the climax.  I carefully set out two chairs.  I pick up my video camera and microphone.  “Who’s brave enough sit opposite me in this seat, let me conduct a mock interview, and film it, right now, in front of the class?” I ask.

The silence can last a long time.  But there’s always one winner, eventually.  I write ‘winner’, because I think that’s how they feel once they’ve allowed me to ask them what they’ve learnt today, what their goals are — how they’ll approach that interview for college or a job now.

My latest winner was Ellyn, a 15 year old who had told me she lacked the confidence simply to go near people she didn’t know.  And yet, she took the challenge.  She revealed to my microphone that she dreamt of being an architect.  She kept a notebook, filling it with photos of buildings that caught her eye.  Rudyard Kipling’s Sussex home, Batemans, was a favourite.  I stopped the interview there.  She’d shown passion for something, and that’s what will make her employable.  One day, I hope, as an architect.

Discover my Newsroom Secrets for yourself, for free ...


Try me for free — by signing up to my Newsroom Secrets!  Every month or so I reveal a secret based on my many years in a BBC newsroom — to help you and your teams with your own deadlines and on-the-day delivery, or simply give you ideas about how to bring training, a conference or Away Day to life.  Do take a look, or sign up, here.

Blogs don’t have to be long or boring — I reckon six snappy paragraphs does the job, and gives you something you will actually remember.

See what you think here ...

Get in Touch

If you find these forms a bit annoying, just give me a call on 07850 188620 or 01273 606246 — I always like to chat about how I might be able to help.  Or just send an email to john@johnyoungmedia.co.uk — letting me know what you have in mind, and we can take it from there.  If you do like the forms, don’t forget to put something in each box marked with a *.

I’m pleased to be part of ...