During my final days of working in TV weather, I shared on social media 20 lessons I’d learned throughout my 25-year span in TV news. You may not have seen them if you aren’t on Facebook, so I’m posting them here on my blog. I hope you enjoy this peek inside the TV news business as much as I enjoyed sharing.
Keep an eye on your inbox for other lessons on my list in the days that follow. If you haven’t signed up for email updates yet, you can do so under “contact” at the top of this page.
- HOLIDAYS AND RATINGS
The worst days of the year to work in morning TV are New Year’s Day, the 5th of July, and the morning after Daylight Saving Time begins. The noisy fireworks celebrations and loss of sleep are something people with “normal” schedules don’t give a second thought.
Others in news might say working holidays is also tough. Remember there is no such thing as a holiday in news. We broadcast on Christmas, Thanksgiving, Labor Day, Memorial Day, and all other 365 days each year. I liked being off work on some holidays, but there were pros and cons to working. Yes, I missed out on “typical” celebrations but there were usually fewer people in the building (including some of the bosses) and sometimes food was catered. We usually got a compensatory day off, or holiday pay, which was never a bad thing.
At most TV stations, days off are not allowed during the Nielsen ratings months: February, May, July, and November. For my entire adult life, I never took my birthday off of work (because it’s in November). Besides my honeymoon, I never took an anniversary trip with my husband (in February). I have never taken a family summer vacation in July.
Of course, for the last 18 years in Central Florida, it’s been nearly impossible to take a vacation in August or September, too, thanks to the peak of hurricane season.
It was part of the job and I have zero regrets. It’s the life and business I chose, and I’m thankful my family worked around it. But you can bet now I am taking plenty of time off to make up for it all!
➡️ “Happiness consists of living each day as if it were the first day of your honeymoon and the last day of your vacation.” – Leo Tolstoy