I found the website, clicked on the “listen now” icon, and waited for the interviews to begin.
See, Indiana girls’ soccer season is starting up again, and Regional Sports Radio conducts live interviews with the coaches and up to three of the players. My daughter, her coach, and two teammates were scheduled to begin their interview at 4:15.
That didn’t happen. The interview actually happened an hour later, but I listened to quite a few local team interviews while waiting for the one I was truly interested in hearing.
Many of the athletes interviewed during that hour were 4.0 and above GPA students. Yet, almost all of them inserted the words “like, umm, and, you know, and I think” throughout ever response to questions from the interviewers.
Now I realize public speaking does not come naturally to everyone, and I am not out to try and discredit anyone of these amazing ladies’ academic abilities, but I would like to offer a great suggestion to anyone who has committed to a live interview: practice and prepare.
Almost every one of these girls could have anticipated the questions that would be asked of them at this statewide aired radio interview, yet I can only conclude, from the responses I heard, that not many of them sat down with a friend or family member and conducted a mock interview before the radio broadcast. And I am absolutely sure such preparation would have made every interview better.
Just as God has called the Christian to be prepared when talking to others about the “hope” we have (see 1 Peter 3:15) in our risen Savior, it is just as important to properly prepare for any task we commit ourselves to.
Before attending a scheduled interview, write out a list of questions the interviewer will probably be asking. Have a friend or family member read the questions, then answer the questions under these less stressful conditions. It might help to actually write down or tape record your answers. Review your responses and analyze the words you chose. Did you say what you wanted to? Do you believe other will easily understand your point of view? Conduct the interview a few times to see if improvements can be made.
Now here is the amazing part; it really doesn’t matter if you give the same answers at the actual interview. The simple act of setting up an interview scenario and acting out some of the possibilities will calm your nerves and allow your answers to seem more natural. There will be no need to fill in the blanks with “like” or “you know” because you have a general idea of what points you would like to get across to the listening public.
God wants his people to speak with confidence and wisdom (see James 1:5). Preparation always brings about a better performance. And even with the difficult, nerve-racking, and scary task of public speaking, it almost always eases some of the butterflies.
The title certainly lures readers! Very well written. A timely and necessary piece -- not just for teens. Thank you for writing it. --- I visited your site. I may have to pick up your book! :) Sounds very interesting.