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How to succeed at TV interviews

How to succeed at TV interviews – By Roz Morris, Managing Director, TV News London Ltd

Why you should sit up straight and look confident

Television interviews are conversational. They sometimes look as though the presenter and the interviewee are just having a chat about a topic. But don’t’ be fooled. This is just a surface appearance of casualness.  In reality, a TV interview is as demanding as a job interview or a major presentation to a conference.

So, you need to make an effort. This doesn’t just mean putting in work on your content and the messages you want to get across. It means looking and sounding the best you can.

Your posture matters

One of the first things that people will notice about you is your posture.  Just as in a job interview, you have to sit up straight and looked confident and pleased to be there (even if you don’t feel this!).

To help yourself to sit up straight it’s best to sit back in the chair with your back against the back of the chair.  You also have to watch out that you don’t put your head on one side because this makes you look more submissive and less authoritative.

Listening mode doesn’t work

In my experience, quite a lot of people find when they do their first TV interviews, either for real or on media training courses, that they have spent their lives in listening mode – leaning their head to one side. 

In normal conversation, this is not noticed, but on the TV screen it gets exaggerated and the leaning looks far more than it actually is. It can even sometimes look rather odd and defensive. Not what you want people to think about when you’re talking to them.

Your appearance must be positive

Make sure your whole demeanor is very positive because, if you look worried, TV viewers will not listen to you, and all that brilliant content you want to put across will be wasted.

So – to look your best on TV – here’s the summary on how best to succeed at TV interviews :

Sit back in your seat

Keep your shoulders down

Don’t slouch, don’t swivel and don’t lean to one side on one arm of a chair

Don’t put your head on one side

Don’t look worried

Look confident and pleased to be there

To find out more on how to succeed at TV interviews watch Roz’s Tips video below or email us on

For information on media training click here.