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How a Leader of Large Organization is Portrayed in the Media


In the contemporary society mass media plays an important role as the main channel of communication. The organizations and the common man relies on the news media of their choice based on formed opinion, taste and preference. According to social science theory, any selected mass media will somewhat have profound effect on the entire society. The essay will discuss how a leader of large organization is portrayed in the media.

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Firstly, it is important to state that there are forces governing mass media in the free and unregulated market. However, there is increased competition among the globally renowned media houses in the quest to impact media consumption; the main concern is to fight for the attention of the listeners, readers and TV viewers (Coombs & Holladay 2011). Organization’s managers as well, derive pleasure in making use of media services from reputable media organizations so that their aims and objectives as far as publicity is involved, would be effectively accomplished (Gabriel 2008).

There are problems that arise in competition between the print and electronic media for survival (Coombs & Holladay 2011). The print media are of low preference, a fact that necessitated the desire to integrate strategies like entertainment, spreading fears` and scandal mongering, while spending fewer hours on researching of news. This is not only geared towards survival for the fittest, but also for social-cultural selection of what is expected of the media (Carpenter 2014).

Electronic Media

Research indicates that the media houses take sides depending on preference. In is pragmatic to state that media should be neutral in reporting incidents and occurrences (Collins 2010). But the preferred media by majority of the audience take the positive side of the managers of big organizations, while the media houses with low preference by the audience take the negative side of the leaders of big organizations (Stacks & Salwen 2014). This is a strategy used to influence readers from all perspectives. Managers and other leaders for large organizations often take the initiative to ensure that their existence is felt within respective organizations and beyond (Iszatt-White 2012). It implies that they would endeavor to seek attention of the preferred media so that they would be able to sell their organizational policies and as well elevate themselves selfishly in the view of the public. The media therefore take such opportunities to scavenge and report all facts that make the manager shoulder high amongst selected leaders (Coombs & Holladay 2011).

However, when handling the managers for large organization, the media is often very attentive to all what the managers perceive or ought to have said (Gabriel 2008). They “media” go as far as narrative the perception rather that spoken word from such managers and probe further if they could still have more information that could suite public consumption (Iszatt-White 2012; Stacks & Salwen 2014). At times, the media may take very simplified information and derive a huge story out of it, in favor of the distinct manager of large organization; it is retrospective that managers of large organizations would not utter a word when they are positively portrayed in the media, instead, they continue to restate the same content that had been aired to the public (Carpenter 2014).

Many at time the managers of large organization go as far as inviting the electronic media houses to their organizations/ offices in order to strike deals for the benefit for the organizations and self (Berrey 2008). This is often adopted as effective strategy for reaching out huge population since electronic media is pacifying comparatively to the print media (Iszatt-White 2012). It is imperative to state that not all media houses have both electronic and print media services, hence the media houses that have televised services are ranked high as far as accomplishing the needs of large organization’s mangers on the media is concerned (Collins 2010).

Print Media and Gutter Press

The print media from media houses that produce both audio and visual media materials are comparatively better of as far as portrayal of the managers of large organization are concerned (Gabriel 2008). This is due to the fact that they have to produce similar information that does not complement each other the view of the public (Coombs & Holladay 2011). But, the information from media houses that are specialized in print media alone, inclusive of the gutter press is composed of negative side of the prominent leaders of large organization. For instance, a print media may consider publishing information like “the other side of Mr. X,” in the literature, it may depict unfamiliar, unimaginable facts or fiction about the leader. It is imperative to state that, just as illustrated in social science theory, the media would imitate what the targeted audience would prefer to read from their newspaper printouts. In fact the articles illustrated may be too short so that the audience get the urge to know more about the article (Carpenter 2014). As smart as they are, it would be obvious that they advise the readers to check the next day paper for the continuation of the story (Carpenter 2014).

Moreover, cases like leader arrested, leaders daughter caught smuggling drugs, leader’s wife caught on the act with another man, and the like are the common features that characterize the print media. They tend to hide the leader’s name so that they do not expose the persons (Collins 2010). Comparatively to the common man, their cases would be aired both electronically and through print media without anonymity. It implies that the media is used as a tool to protect the dignity of leaders of large organizations.

Experimental research indicate that, in spite of the belief that mass media could influence and change opinion, partially yes, but on issue that a people have formed opinions, it does not bring any change (Collins 2010). Hence the leaders of large organizations should strive to portray positive image towards the general public and the employees so that they would enjoy media coverage. Conversely, on initiative new issues, media cold be used effectively (Stacks & Salwen 2014). Although, it has routinely been a social problem that media is to blame for covering information that negatively impacts the community and organization’s fraternity. This should not always be the case since product of news always go through several processes before it is approved to be palatable to the targeted audience (Coombs & Holladay 2011; Carpenter 2014).

However, among the sources of news for the media include but not limited to reporters, news agencies, press agents, journalists and editors (Berrey 2008). According to research, completing information entails many other media citing from opinion leaders and other media respectively; thus making the process of information flow quite long (Coombs & Holladay 2011). But it is realistic to state that the longer the communication chain, the higher the chances of experiencing distortion.

Source of Information

To avoid fear of victimization media fraternity is often courageous when reporting the information derived from reputable sources like the police (Gabriel 2008); the leaders of big organization could at all-time not be able to disclose information that would negatively portray their image to the public (Coombs & Holladay 2011). At times, the media reports when such persons try to block their faces so that the public may not take note of their appearance. Media reports from courtrooms are also affirmed to portray the leaders of big organizations in their true picture and colors (Carpenter 2014). The media crew team that reports from the court yards have firsthand information that does not hide or leave any stone unturned. That is why most of the media crews work with ease when it comes to reporting information conveyed by legally registered organizations or groups (Iszatt-White 2012).

Routinely, media has since been criticized for publication of too much bad news (Coombs & Holladay 2011). But, based on targeted audience, more attentions given to stories that explore disastrous situations and crime for example, rather than what is generally perceived to be good news (Carpenter 2014). Research indicates that most of the people within the targeted audience like bad news, such are very relevant to them (Iszatt-White 2012; Stacks & Salwen 2014). Moreover, it is often interesting to read about horrific stories on morbid and bizarre that happen far away comparatively to reports about well-known trivial dangers that is common everywhere (Gabriel 2008).

Considering the psychological implication of social information, it is true that leaders do not intend to have their personality side aired on the media, instead they opt for the abstract principles (Berrey 2008). That is why the famous media gagging is why the leaders of big organization embrace the act of media gagging so that their personality side may not be exposed to the general public (Collins 2010). In such a case, the media has to work with utmost intelligence to explore personality traits and facets that leaders ought not to see or read through the media (Carpenter 2014).


The portrayal of leaders of big organization in the media is somewhat compromised. The leaders strive to ensure that only the positive aspect are illustrated; this is mainly to protect their moral values within the community. It is imperative to reiterate that some of the leaders of big organizations are also stakeholders in the media houses, which makes it difficult to enhance transparency and impartiality in news coverage especially on TV. The commonly renowned media houses tend to convey positive side of the leaders of big organizations while the print media  inclusive of gutter press tend to focus on the news that have negative implications like bizarre. It is more interesting if the content is associated with prominent personality. Media gagging is profound in media houses which are partially owned by the same leaders. Thus jeopardizing the ability to scavenge and transmit the truth. This is in contrast to the obligated roles of media, which is mainly to act with impartiality in executing work obligations.


Berrey, E. C., 2008. How Diversity Transforms the Project of Racial Equality. Paris- France: ProQuest.
Carpenter, S. P., 2014. Mennonites and Media: Mentioned in It, Maligned by It, and Makers of It: How Mennonites Have Been Portrayed in Media and How They Have Shaped Media for Identity and Outreach. Berlin- Germany: Wipf and Stock Publishers.
Collins, R., 2010. Leadership in a Wiki World: Leveraging Collective Knowledge to Make the Leap to Extraordinary Performance. London- UK: Dog Ear Publishing .
Coombs, T. W. & Holladay, S. J., 2011. The Handbook of Crisis Communication: Volume 22 of Handbooks in Communication and Media. New York- USA: John Wiley & Sons.
Gabriel, Y., 2008. Organizing Words: A Critical Thesaurus for Social and Organization Studies. London- UK: Oxford University Press .
Iszatt-White, M., 2012. Leadership As Emotional Labour: Management and the ‘Managed Heart’. Berlin- Germant: Routledge.
Stacks, D. W. & Salwen, M. B., 2014. An Integrated Approach to Communication Theory and Research: Routledge Communication Series. London- UK: Routledge.

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