Debate Camp for Business Leaders

As we approach the last few weeks of the Presidential campaign, you've probably already come across the term "debate camp" many times. It refers to the practice of candidates sequestering themselves with a small staff of trusted advisers and media training coaches to prepare for the most important question-and-answer event of their lives: the Presidential debates. The skills that Barack Obama, John McCain, Sarah Palin, and Joe Biden practice in those sessions can be applied to many important events in your own life as a business professional: conducting media interviews, winning over reluctant customers, or pitching skeptical investors. As someone who has worked in closed-door sessions to prepare Fortune 500 CEOs to face difficult—and often uncomfortable—questions, I've tried to distill the lessons into a three-step process.

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