Dear Coach Belichick,

I’m a Massachusetts native, so my team loyalties sway pretty heavily toward the Celtics, Red Sox and Patriots (I’m not much of a hockey fan, but I guess Bruins too). I’ve been observing you for some time as you give media interviews – post-game and others – and I am, like many, mostly amused yet sometimes frustrated.
 
football

 

Yeah, it’s kind of fun and funny to watch how you grunt out one-word answers as you oblige the press in your charmingly begrudging way. And yeah, the hoodie and messy hair are also part of your charm. And yeah, your annoyance with reporters’ stupid questions is our annoyance too. And for sure, you are an amazing coach, you’ll go down as one of the greats. No question there.
 
But.
 
Before Sunday, can we talk about what it would/could look like, sound like, and be like if you gave them (the sports media) and us (your fans and followers) a little bit more? Could I be so bold as to offer you some coaching?
 
Here are just a couple of suggestions for you that would enhance the overall post-game interview experience and outcome for everyone:

  1. Never mind the media, they’re just a conduit to your bigger audience. Show up in a way that tells us you want to connect with us. We love your #brevity, but with all due respect to dentists, don’t show up looking like you’re about to have all your teeth pulled. We feel a little jilted when you do that.
  2. Think about your audience, your ultimate audience – us, your fans and followers. We’re hungry, thirsty, sometimes crazed. Satisfy us, give us something to hold onto, something we can cling to, learn from, and/or repeat to others. #audience-centricity goes a long way toward keeping your fan base engaged and pulling for you.
  3. Win or lose, the emotions are intense. We get that. We have empathy, we’d hug you if we could. Share your emotions with us, let us in, give us a sense of what it’s like to walk around in your hoodie, cleats and headset. Please recognize we’re emotional too, but you’re our leader, and we will take our cues from you. Let us in a little more, give us more #transparency?
  4. We know you have haters, we get it. And we know the media can distort what you say and how you say it. But you’re one of the greats, surely you can rise above and give us all the #graciousness you have. Your loyalists want to be behind a winner, no matter what the outcome of the game is.
  5. You have a Super Bowl to win, so your #preparedness needs to be about strategy for game day and not necessarily about how you present yourself in front of the press. I’ll give you that. But I know you’re a pro, so when the game is over see what you can do to hit some or all of the above four points.

Hey, thanks for your time and good luck on Sunday!
 
Your coach,
Beth #jocktalkbook

Beth Levine

Beth Levine

Communications Coach at SmartMouth Communications
SmartMouth Founder and Principal Beth Noymer Levine is a Communications Coach who is emerging as one of the country’s leading voices on how to prepare and deliver speeches and presentations that actually work for both the audience and the speaker.
Beth Levine

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