The brief

MIH Solutions was invited by global pharmaceutical company Allergan to work with an international group of its country medical directors. Although their exposure to the media was historically uncommon, the risk of media activity was increasing significantly, with some directors having particular concerns about being ‘doorstepped’ by journalists on tricky subjects.

Allergan wanted to ensure that its medical directors were capable of developing and sharing key news, information and messages in a skilled, confident and appropriate way. Learning from the day was to be transferrable and relevant to speaking both in public and to staff or stakeholders about challenging, sensitive themes and issues.

What we did

We researched the media in all relevant countries, including style and themes of interest relating to Allergan’s industry. We then probed into Allergan itself and spoke to relevant in-house experts to understand the organisation and develop bespoke scenarios for each of the delegates. This helped us to shape scenarios that were both relevant and realistic to each individual, and we were also able to provide advice on aspects of potential interest to the media.

Our approach to and line of questioning was tailored to suit both individual confidence and experience, as well as the journalistic style typically adopted within each country.

We worked closely with the corporate communications department throughout to understand the organisation’s communications strategy, key messaging, style and tone. This ensured our approach and advice was perfectly aligned with the organisation, its needs and preferences.

While all directors spoke English, it was not the first language for five attendees. We adapted our approach to ensure that everyone was able to make the most of the programme and take away learning that was of most value to them.

The result

All participants reporting increased confidence in dealing with difficult scenarios and getting their messages across. The discussions also elicited a raft of important communications priorities and considerations, which the team found enlightening and helpful and so took away for further action.