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Is it what you know or who you know?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by newspaperman, Nov 11, 2010.

  1. newspaperman

    newspaperman Member

    One of the journalism students I got a chance to speak with asked me, "Are journalism careers advanced because of your unique writing style or, like most industries, who you know?

    What's you guys take?
  2. spud

    spud Member

    Combination of both, usually, with more who than what.
  3. CYowSMR

    CYowSMR Member

    Agree with that guy ^^^
  4. 21

    21 Well-Known Member

    The 'who' might get you in the door, but you'd better show the 'what' once you're in.
  5. Oggiedoggie

    Oggiedoggie Well-Known Member

    I think it depends largely on who knows the extent of what you know.

    (And the extent to which you can learn.)
  6. reformedhack

    reformedhack Active Member

    Every single response so far is spot-on.
  7. Mediator

    Mediator Member

    I'll add this: It's who knows what you know, and is in a position to hire you at the right time.

    Cultivate potential who's while augmenting what you know.
  8. shockey

    shockey Active Member

    the only post necessary here.
  9. SF_Express

    SF_Express Active Member

    Yeah, I think 21/shockey kind of nailed it. With the further corollary that you often end up knowing "who" because you're able to do "what."
  10. PCLoadLetter

    PCLoadLetter Well-Known Member

    Most of the jobs I've had, I had some kind of connection that helped get me in the door. I probably would have been a strong candidate for them anyway, but the connections definitely helped.

    It doesn't always work that way, though. My biggest career break by far came in a place where I knew nobody. The boss liked my work and appreciated the fact that my resume was very similar to hers (we were both photogs-turned-producers who had worked in small markets in the northwest.) That jump took me from market 120+ to a top 20 market.

    Connections are nice, but they're not everything.
  11. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    I would say it's about 75 percent "who you know"

    I know lots of outstanding writers who will never get a shot at a big paper because they don't know how to network.

    Obviously you have to deliver when you get there.
  12. spaceman

    spaceman Active Member

    it's 60 percent who, 30 percent what and 10 percent luck.
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