What we should teach in J-school
Received these words of wisdom from an industry veteran today by e-mail. Thought they were worth sharing (with some very slight edits to make sure this blog will pass through those corporate firewalls that look for certain words ...)
From a Newsroom Veteran
Be on very good terms with the secretary who takes down how many days off you have had. If she likes you, that's worth another week of vacation every year.
Do not date anyone in law enforcement. It does not matter how intelligent they sound. They do not share your values.
Do not date a stripper.
Be active in a journalism related organization. You will meet people who can give you jobs if yours goes to crap, and maybe even some sources.
Learn to say: "Yes boss. What can I do for you?" Then do it, unless banned by the Geneva Convention. It takes less time than fighting and then you can get back to your real job. Try not to insult anyone with the BS you put into it.
Find something that is important, but too complicated for the guy that reads the paper or scans the Internet all day. He is there to do the "Woman bites dog who killed her children" story. You are there to make a difference.
Go to an office supply store and get a receipt book. When you are out there, you sometimes don't have the time to document your expenses. Make sure you pull receipts from your book in random order.
Always have several cases of water at your house and another in the back of your car. You can live a lot longer without food than you can without water.
And the most important thing - if the story is worth running, you need a photog. For one thing, it costs twice as much to send a reporter and a photographer, so editors think it is worth better play. For the second thing, a great photo will get you on A1 with a so-so story. And, if you get a great story, you assuredly want a photo.
And never get drunk at a company party. Put in half an hour of shaking hands and then split. There is nothing good here.