"There's no reporters today," my video producer told me as I excitedly walked into the media center for my Tuesday morning shift.
"What do you mean no reporters? So what are we going to do?" I responded in disappointment.
This was my second time as lead producer, and I was determined to produce a great show with great content. Although my morning started off with bad news, I was still determined to work with what I had and knew that the show must go on. So I stayed calm and kept my cool. In the professional world, I think it's important to be able to maintain your composure, because it helps you organize your own thoughts as well as think clearly. In addition, the rest of the team is relying on you and everyone works better when stress levels are under control.
The morning was slow and smooth as usual. I settled into my desk at the halo and sipped a freshly brewed chai latte from Coffee Bean.
After our morning rundown meeting, I felt like there were many unique stories, but I felt unsure of how I was going to execute all of them without our usual reporters. I knew I had a lot of ideas for how I wanted to start the show
, but with little staff, I was already feeling defeated.
However, as the day progressed, our 11 A.M. multimedia journalists (MJs) rolled in, and things became a little more manageable. MJs are reporters who go out into the field and help report stories. They are responsible for reaching out to sources, securing interviews, and shooting video for the newscast. My video teammate helped to assign stories while I continued to format and organize the rundown.
Because it was Fat Tuesday, I thought it would be
fun to start the show with a live shot at a Mardi Gras event. Since the newsworthiness of all of the day-of-air stories seemed relatively similar, it was tough for me to figure out the best placement for a fun live shot.
Ultimately, the Mardi Gras live shot did not make it into the first block of the newscast, and this was partly because we were frantically searching for a live shot reporter throughout the day.
However, when we finally found one, we were relieved to have our Mardi Gras segment back in the show.
Ultimately, this was a great show despite having no reporters in the morning. We had very few technical errors, and the show was perfectly on time. I think one important lesson that I learned is that it is possible to work through the obstacles and overcome challenges with a combination of diligence and ambition.
I learned an important lesson that I believe will help me in the professional production world. It's important to have a strategy and remain organized throughout the day. Communicating with my team helped me effectively maintain the organization of the rundown and stay calm. Also, I made sure to have a backup plan in case any stories fell through. This is an important skill to have as a producer because the show must go on, and it is your responsibility to get a full show on the air.