Didn’t we learn anything from Casey Kasem’s infamous rant about the importance of proper music before delivering a “death dedication?”
There are some good lessons from this tape, but perhaps the biggest one is that you should assume that “all mics are hot.”
This is “Rule #1” for people in media. First-semester broadcasting students know it.
But people are people, so sometimes mistakes are made. You know, when you’re hanging out with your frat boy buddies before the camera starts rolling, the topic of women comes up, and you start talking about how you like to “grab them by the pussy.”
Which brings me to Rule #2 — if you get caught, own it.
Billy Bush, Trump’s frat boy sidekick deleted his social media profiles as soon as this clip was released, burying his head in the sand, before issuing a statement saying he was “younger” (he was 34).
Trump issued a statement saying he’d heard worse from Bill Clinton.
By the way, the woman they were speaking about was Bush’s “Access Hollywood” co-host, Nancy O’Dell.
The Big Takeaway
People will forgive you for something like this, but only if you own your behavior. Pick a side, issue your statement, and move on.
What this looks like…
1. If you don’t think your behavior was a mistake, don’t issue a half-ass “apology” or try to compare what you did to somebody else.
2. If you think you made a mistake, issue a real apology.
Either way, don’t bitch about the responses you get. People want a leader, not somebody who gets defensive and makes excuses for his behavior.
Also published on Medium.