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Career Story: Radio Talk Show Host

Radio Talk Show Host

Job Title: Radio Talk Show Host

Type of Company: I work for a major regional radio station in Boston, Massachusetts

Education: BA, English, Boston State College •• JD, Boston University Law School

Previous Experience: I worked as on on-air television reporter at WBZ-TV in Boston for 31 years.

Job Tasks: As a talk show host, my responsibility is to generate conversation among my listeners. I host a variety of guests including authors, politicians and celebrities. I think it is very important to allow people to express their opinions, The motto of my show is "I don't care what you are thinking... just as long as you are thinking". We also encourage people to "think responsibly." Too many talk shows are mere shoutfests. The callers also need to know that they will be challenged by the host. We, therefore, emphasize the need for conversation as the show's format. When people call up with the sole intention of making a speech, I try to interrupt them and start a conversation. If it's apparent that they're not interested, I will caution them that I'm about to end the call unless a conversation starts. Many callers just barge ahead and continue to make their statement, at which time I end the call. But others do realize that they are about to be disconnected and we can slowly start to talk.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is the opportunity it affords me to talk with and listen to people in some thirty-eight states across the nation. Our signal reaches from Boston to states as far west as Illinois, Michigan and Iowa and as far south as Florida. We also have many callers from the eastern half of Canada and have a presence on the worldwide web. I honestly cannot think of any negative aspect to my job as a radio talk show host.

Job Tips: Any person trying for a job in the media needs to secure as broad a liberal arts education as possible. Radio and television are very competitive businesses and many aspirants think that getting a job in the media is easy. Not true! Learn as much as you can about any issue because that issue will some day be of interest to your audience.

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