New Year, New Skills

Posted on December 20, 2010


It’s entirely possible that if you were interviewing for your first job in radio right now you might not get hired. Some stations are expecting a much broader skill set than just a good aircheck.

I attended the recent Arbitron Client Conference and Jacobs Media Summit in Baltimore and realized how much things have changed during a session that featured Joel Oxley, the VP/GM of WTOP/Washington and Michael Yoch, the director of product development at NPR, talking about how their organizations are moving beyond being about just radio toward being true multi-media platforms.

Here’s what each said when Paul Jacobs asked if they had changed their criteria for hiring people:

Oxley said that at WTOP, “It used to be about audio only. Now everybody has to take a writing test.” He talked about hiring some new sports reporters and said the process included seeing if they could handle, “a column, a blog, tweeting and of course they still have to do audio.”

Yoch said at NPR they had been hiring people with specific new-media talents such as blogging but now they prefer to find someone more well-rounded, “because we have to compete with a lot of people with different skill sets.”

By now you’ve probably heard this a hundred times, but just in case it still hasn’t sunk in, being a successful talent isn’t just about doing a great show. It means having a strong online presence, being part of the community, doing a great show and more.

Shameless Plug: If you need help growing into a multi-media personality I know a great coach who’s ready to help out.