Gina London is an Emmy award-winning CNN anchor and correspondent. She is also Founder and CEO at Gina London Better Communications working internationally as a Communications consultant and coach who works with executives, journalists and other professionals on mastering all aspects of communications.
Gina, wow, you've had a pretty remarkable career. How did you end up based in Cork?
Gina: Ireland is the technology center of Europe and the only English speaking country in the Eurozone, so with my wide range of international tech clients, it makes sense for me to be here. That and Ireland is also a lovely place to raise my eight-year-old daughter.
You've worked with Fox News and were an anchor with CNN, so you've covered your fair share of US political news. Have you been keeping up to date with the current US Presidential race, and if so, what do you make of it all?
Gina: Before television, I started my career in Washington, DC on the political side - first as an aide to a Congressman, then as a strategist for the Democratic Party. The convergence, for me, means that even though I'm not reporting on the current presidential race, politics and current events are always in my blood. I am active in the CNN Alumni forum, glued to the debates and definitely following the Primary Election results so far. As such, I've been regularly contributing to RTE and NewsTalk radio news and talk programs covering US politics.
The US public seem to thrive on the theatrics of the election race. In your opinion, is it hard for politicians to break through the noise and effectively deliver their message?
Gina: Yes and yes. Message penetration takes millions of dollars while at the same time the media compete for the public's attention by spotlighting the theatrics through 24-hour news coverage.
You obviously feel passionate about good communication skills and there really is no substitute for a good speaker. Is there any person in politics (or any other industry) at present who you think is a great example of a good communicator?
Gina: I am extremely passionate about communications skills, they're what distinguishes any dynamic leader - no matter what field. I firmly believe engaging communications skills can be learned by anyone through proper coaching and dedicated practice. My favorite business communicator is Bill McDermott, CEO of the world's largest enterprise software provider, SAP. His Executive Presence is engaging and personable. He recently wrote a book about his "relentless optimism" called, "Winners Dream" and he is active on Twitter and LinkedIn. A role model leader. Politically, I am captivated by the compassionate leading style of Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. He opened his country to Syrian refugees, personally greeting some of them with coats at the airport, he pokes fun at himself in political ads and appointed a gender-balanced cabinet! All that and he has more than a million followers on Twitter. A very personable world leader.
Finally, what are your feelings on social media, friend or foe of people running for election?
Gina: Big friend! Engaging through social media platforms is not an option, it's a requirement of any serious politician today - full stop.
Learn more about Gina London and her services here.