Shawna’s “TAHA” Rule of Media Relations;

Transparent, Available, Honest & Accountable***


If organizations follow this formula, they’re sure to have more positive media coverage:


Transparent – if your organization is involved in something controversial, or has made a serious error that may affect the public, come clean fast!  Beat the media to the punch, because if you don’t, reporters and columnists will jump at the opportunity to “fry” you. 


Available – always be available to reporters, and always return their phone calls.  If you don’t, they’ll just keep hounding you.  Also, never say “no comment”; it suggests that you have something to hide.  Remember, the media doesn’t “make someone look bad”; someone makes themselves look bad by hiding or running from the media.


Honest – don’t lie to reporters and never say “no comment”.  The truth always comes out, and if you aren’t honest, it will come back and bite you.


Accountable – as hard as an organization tries to prevent it, there is always a chance of it making an error that may affect the public.  If that happens to you, publicly admit the mistake; promise to find out what went wrong so that you’d make sure it wouldn’t happen again; and follow through with that promise – let the public know what you learned about the error and how you’d prevent a repeat.


***This is an easy formula, one that unfortunately, few organizations think about.  This is a simple way to ensure that you have a positive public perception in the end, no matter what happens.

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