Behind the Scenes of the “Today” Show
Many of you know that I was on the Today show a couple of weeks ago to talk with Kathie Lee and Hoda about my new book, Business Networking and Sex (not what you think). Some of you might like to hear the “real” dirt on what Hoda and Kathie Lee are like off camera.
Ready for it?? It’s really juicy! Here it comes . . . they are fun and professional. OK . . . maybe that’s not juicy but it’s the truth.
Both women were very friendly and welcoming to me before the interview started. In the few minutes we had during the break, they engaged with me and asked questions. They also talked a lot about Hoda’s Mardi Gras beads and, well . . . that conversation I really can’t repeat here. Let’s just say that my contribution to that topic started and ended with me making one comment: “Ummm . . I’m not sure I know how to participate in this conversation.” To that, everyone laughed and I was off the hook–PHEW!
The “Today” show is a really well-oiled machine that operates like a media factory. Yet, at the same time almost everyone was very friendly and professional (starting with Gil, the producer, and going all the way through the sound crew in the studio). It’s hard to visualize just how many people are running through the studio facilities in the morning – trust me, it’s a lot. People are lined up, ready to go in both the makeup room (yeah, yeah, – they put make-up on me) and the Green Room (where people wait just prior to going on camera).
You may note that I was on air with Nicole Williams. A lot of people have asked me about Nicole and why she was part of the interview with me. Well, I’m not sure if it is true, but I’ve been told that since this was my first BIG national TV show, producers sometimes worry about someone one “freezing” on live television with the hosts (what can I say, they don’t know me well) so they sometimes bring in another person to give a different angle, add color commentary, and be there to ‘catch the guest’ if they fall, so to speak.
Nicole is an author and expert in her own right (having written the book: Girl on Top – about career success for women). However, Nicole told me before we went on that this interview was about my book and that she was there to support that and not take over the interview. I must say she did just that and was a real professional in the process (thanks Nicole, I see why they make a habit of bringing you back on the show to support other guests).
What we all see on the TV screen is very similar to what I saw off camera – except that there is an incredible whirlwind of activity that takes place with moving people and props from one area to another in between segments.
I have to say that it was truly a great experience and a lot of fun. Showing gratitude is an important part of networking. So, let me do that here… I’m grateful to my publicist, Sara Jennings for having lined this up, to my co-authors Frank De Raffele and Hazel Walker for writing Business Networking and Sex with me so I had such solid, cutting-edge content to talk about on the show (I’m also grateful to Frank for being there at the show for moral support), to Gil (the producer) for believing in the topic (and that I’d be a pretty good guest), and of course to Kathie Lee, Hoda, and Nicole for doing–what I felt–was a great interview in four minutes. Thank you all!