Sunday, January 18, 2009


I was out to brunch with my friend, a co-worker and his wife. We were all talking about the economy, jobs, and how we're all looking for new opportunities. The conversation turned to me and they asked what have I been finding. I said that there wasn't much out there but I've been wrestling with the idea of switching careers and becoming a TV reporter. Going to a smaller market and taking a HUGE pay cut. Like I'd be making about half. Then after we talked more I started to wonder..."Am I really cut out for that job?"

Many people don't understand that the media business is very cut throat. I mean look at our show! It's not like Mathew, AJ, or I did anything wrong...or even that we're bad people. We're not but, we didn't fit the new plan for the radio station and so there you go. When people ask me or my friend about our business they just thinks it's crazy. They can't imagine working 12 hours days without overtime, or the kind of talk that goes on in the halls. It would probably make most people blush. Although, at the moment I can't imagine what I'd want to do more. I think a lot of people can't imagine doing anything else.

On Tuesday, one of the biggest companies in the industry, Clear Channel plans to lay off possibly thousands of people. Tuesday is also inauguration day for Barack Obama. It's not a coincidence. They hope that the inauguration will over shadow the laying off of many people. My friends and ex husband could be one of them. I cross my fingers for them. In a way, especially my ex. This business is all he knows. He started working in radio when he was 14 and didn't go to college because he was off doing his career. He does very well for himself now and he's high on the food chain but the higher you are, the more money make, and the bigger target you are. He wonders what will be next for him if he gets the ax...and I wonder too.

So, back to my dilemma. When we were at brunch talking about jobs, my friend started telling a story of how horrible it can be at times. And I started freaking out. Thinking, "Can I really do this job? Am I going to suck at it?" What happens if i get my first job in a smaller town and then I can't get out?! I can't imagine living in El Paso, TX for the rest of my life. All I know is that the state of radio isn't the same. And I need to figure out what I should go for. TV has always been a path I wanted to go for but, will I be good at it? I almost wish God would send this huge sign that says..."GO THIS WAY...YOU WON'T FAIL!" I just don't want to fail or be unsuccessful in life.

A lot of people I know have family that has money and if things don't work out for them then they can always bum a few bucks from daddy. I can't. It's not even an option. In fact, I have no one to rely on but myself, so if I fail I have no one to depend on or blame but me. I think most people when they make huge career changes they have someone to rely on. The uncertainty is a little unnerving and to be honest, the fact that I'll possibly be making No money scares the snot out of me. I thank God I don't have any debt...but when you make no money you can't save money either.

I'm really hoping I can get a sign of a clear path I should go down.


Shawn said...

Hey Erin,
It seems like there's just a little too much group think reactivity going on with some companies lately. In radio, maybe the numbers justify reformats, but I always thought people connect with personalities moreso than playlists. Take what you did, the things you said and wrote are the kinds of things women of different ages can relate to and laugh about. I heard things like "it's so true", and "that was too funny" and "she says what I would never say out loud". LBS, is there any comparison between that kind of feeback and "good tune" towards an airborne ipod?

Eating the expense of moving and taking a cut when things are well, tighter than you're comfortable with, is a lot to swallow. It sounds like you have strong faith and a great support group now. If you can succeed in going it alone in a new field, that would speak volumes. You have some things in your favor, faith, being debt free, and no spouse to persuade into moving, and yeah, your personality.

A couple times after work, I've seen you do the news and from the male casual observer's point you view, you come across as confident, charming, knowledable, and attractive. May I ask what your ultimate dream job in TV would be?

busterp said...

Brother-in-law works in the radio industy. Tough times from selling to the other end (on the air). Clear Channel needs to fail so we can get back to real programming. Good luck. Maybe things will turn around, though not soon.