Do you have a penchant for action? Are you passionate about current affairs? You may want to become a journalist, either online or offline.
What career is this and what is its job functions?
A journalist’s main job is to report current events with accurate information and without bias. You may have to travel once in a while to get your story, entertain tip-offs, and attend meetings, press launches, and court hearings. It is also your duty to reach out to people for interviews or sources of facts. Since news can happen in a flash,
you should need to record details very fast, preferably by shorthand, and submit your work via the Internet.
What are the specific benefits of pursuing this career?
One of the greatest satisfactions in journalism is you can inform your local community and/or state. It’s also not unusual to accidentally discover great businesses and people who can serve as sources of inspiration for your readers. Since you deal with current events, you become an active participant in shaping history. Journalism allows you to meet a variety of people and work with the “top guns” in the
industry, including news agencies such as BBC, Associated Press, or CNN. Some clients are also willing to provide training.
Why is this type of career in demand right now?
People will always be hungry for news. They always want to keep themselves informed. Moreover, as long as you’re willing to adapt to the changes in the field, you’ll never run out of work.
What type of person would love this career?
Those who love to be where the action is will surely enjoy working as a journalist.
What are some disadvantages/obstacles in this
You need to disseminate current events fast; otherwise, you allow your competitors to obtain the recognition. It’s also common among journalists to work ungodly hours or with no definite time schedule since you’re chasing the news. Yet news agencies impose strict deadlines, which you must meet if you want to keep your job. Some even put their own lives on the line.
What skills do you need?
Not all journalists are graduates of communications or journalism, but these courses give you such a huge advantage against your competitors. Bigger news
organizations may want you to obtain a master’s degree in journalism or media. You should also be highly interested in current events, have the ability to present news in an unbiased but engaging fashion, and be aware of the ethical guidelines in the field. You must have a “nose for news,” as journalists says, and be the first one to cover it.
How do you break into this career?
A little know-how in journalism may be necessary since competition is tough. You can look into vacant positions normally published in dailies, magazines, and other news organizations.
Who usually hires in this field?
- National and local papers
- Online news agencies
- News-related websites and blogs
- Broadcasting companies
- Traditional news agencies
- Press release companies
What is the average pay rate / salary?
Entry-level journalists usually earn no more than $34,000 a year. But as you grow into the field, you can increase your income to as much as $50,000. You can receive more if you are already heading a news agency or publication, as well as work as an editor.
How and where to find jobs / clients?
It’s convenient if you begin with the clients who are closest to you, such as your local daily and magazine. You can also go online to find out if other news agencies, especially those abroad, are
searching for international correspondents.
For more information on starting a journalism career, download our FREE eBook, “Jumpstart a Journalism Career.”