Politics- everyone’s favourite topic. We all know about politicians, whether we like them or not, but how much do we know about the people supporting the politicians?
This week I was able to learn a bit more about Patrick Searle’s job, one of the staff supporting Glen Murray, the Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure for the Government of Ontario.
Patrick Searle is the Press Secretary and Communications Manager for the Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. The job is fast-paced and everything must be quick and concise in order for the minister’s messages to reach the public at the right time in the right manner.
Patrick says, “Our job is always to communicate what needs to be communicated” in order to make the public understand.
Patrick says, “We’re faced with a tired population.” When running press conferences for Glenn Murray, he must consider what a reporter would ask and how to make relevant connections for the public. When working with government, there is also an understanding that the majority of population don’t have time for them and even aren’t very interested in them. The messages must be clear, concise, and to the point. The first two sentences coming out of a politician’s mouth are the most important because they determine whether someone will continue listening or not, and whether the media will continue to report on the event or move on to a more interesting topic.
When we watch the news, we see politicians speak at podiums and in auditoriums, but we don’t consider all the details that went into the location, the background, the lighting, the speech, the sound, and all the other details that were crafted to create a memorable moment. A moment that Patrick hopes would make it into the 6:00 news, the pinnacle of the news day.
There are people who have orchestrated these events to ensure that what needs to be communicated is communicated. They ensure that the media is communicated by the minute so they don’t become bored, that the room will accommodate all the media, that the background appropriately reflects the speech, that the politician has transportation to the event at the right moment and more.
Next time you watch the news, look behind the clips of the politicians and consider all the details that went into the press conference and behind the scenes.