My Advice for Future Producers
The biggest thing I wish I knew at the start of the semester was to develop relationships with reporters, MJs, assignment desk, and studio. It’s so important to know everyone by name and ask them how their week is going, but it helps to know the extras, like what grade they are in and where they are from. There are plenty of times as producers that we all snap at MJs in a crisis situation, but if you make an effort to build a relationship, the more motivation they will have to want to do a good job. Sometimes it’s someone with a morning assignment desk shift who’s peppy energy gets you through the morning meeting, or someone who will selflessly use her Trojan plan to buy you coffee. I’ve been trying to bring back MVP for Team Thursdays so those who go above and beyond for assignment desk and MJ will know that the producers are recognizing their hard work! Also, the better your relationship, the more likely they are to do you favors, like if at the last minute there isn’t a camera operator and you can convince someone on the assignment desk to stay past his shift and run over to the studio—you know who you are ;) My goal for my shadow day this week is to not even use the sign-in sheet to write the full list of MJs and assignment desk on the board!
Another piece of advice I have for future producers is to stay calm and have a plan “B.” It’s so important to have backup package ideas if one falls through in the morning. The more research you do the night before, and the more you know what is going on around campus, Los Angeles, and the country on your day-of-air, the better. I wish I knew how important it is to pay attention to details when researching story ideas. For example, one Monday night while I was finding package ideas, I saw a Facebook status update about the rainbow floor. This post could have been so easy to overlook, but it caught my eye and I did further research through Daily Trojan articles. And less than 24 hours later, a package on the rainbow floor changes aired on ATVN!