This blog post is for all of the rookies. It is going to be as blunt as possible…. (only because I want you all to succeed and also because I have been told these things from long-time professionals in the field.)
Be persistent: There are going to be times when sources aren’t getting back with you, won’t return phone calls or just seem impossible to get a hold of. Don’t ever give up, keep moving forward and think of ways to improvise.
Be humble: No matter how good you think you are, you ALWAYS have room for improvement. You’re just as good as your latest news package, promo, etc. No one likes to deal with people who are full of themselves, I sure don’t. Accept compliments, but no need to shed them out to the whole world. (or intern room for that matter)
Don’t be cocky: I have run into people who think it’s their duty to brag about the things they have done. To be honest, I don’t care what you have done, show me what you can do. If you have a good on-air personality, that’s great—but you also have to be a good person off-air. I personally get turned off by people who think they are the next best thing (there is a reason why you aren’t in a big news market right now) Never make yourself the highlight of your stories; you are not the center of attention.
Be able to take criticism: The truth hurts. If you can’t handle it, you aren’t in the right business. If you can’t take criticism you will never improve. You have to be able to hear that all of your hard work on the story you just did, isn’t good. Grow some thick skin. Don’t make excuses for not having an interview, the sound not sounding great on your track, etc. Use it for ways to get better. I have had the toughest critics look at my stuff—it has only helped me to become better as a journalist and news reporter.
Help each other out: Do favors for one another. It is so important to help each other out. Create teams, make friendships, and go out on dinner dates. (or drinking dates)
Before you go on camera, live—make sure you smile: or this will happen……
Whining is for babies. It’s ok once and a while though.
No one is perfect. You never will be……
……BUT if your voiceover doesn’t sound perfect, record it until it is.
You are going to have good stories and bad stories: that is OK. It’s not the end of the world if it’s bad.
If you want to be in the news business, you have to work hard. That being said, you will have to work 40 hours a week unpaid, stay up very late at night, and get up very early in the morning. It will eventually pay off—even if it’s in 20 years from now.
On a lighter note, here is a Bloopers video that I made from last semester. Be sure to check it out—it’s a great way for me to make fun of myself without even saying anything. Hope you enjoy!!! Have a great week.