Doug Yakel – SFO Public Information Officer
TV is a tricky business. It’s easy to get frustrated and want to give up. But the rules of making a change and stepping out on faith aren’t unique to TV News, Entertainment or any other artistic endeavor. Simply put, if your job feels like too much work, chances are you’re in the wrong career. If you’re ready to start something new, push logic aside and follow your heart. Don’t expect much support from those close to you, however, as they might be nervous about your financial future, especially if you don’t have a solid backup plan. Stand firm and don’t let naysayers drown out the still, small voice inside. Confucius said, “If you love what you do, you won’t work a day in your life.” Only you know what’s right for you. Step out on Faith – Make it Happen.
Trust Your Gut –
Decide what it is that you really want to do with you life. The fact that you want to quit your job and start something new means you know what you don’t want to do (keep working at the same job), but you aren’t really sure what’s in store for the next phase of your career.
Press Conference. Update Bridge closure. Instillation of removable median barrier. Saturday, January 10th 2015
Do some soul searching. Think about what attracted you to your current job in the first place. What are your favorite activities and responsibilities? What are you exceptionally good at? What have you always wanted to learn or try or do more of, but never had the time? If money was no object, how would you spend your days? Ask yourself these questions to get an idea about what you really want to do.
Make A Plan –
Begin planning what your next step will look like and the amount of time and resources that will be required. If you want to get a job in a new field, begin networking with people who already do what you want to do. Find out what kind of training you’ll need. If you need to go back to school, begin looking into courses and costs. If you want to start a new business, decide whether you’ll begin your new company at home or in a leased space. Begin scouting out potential locations or decide how you’ll rearrange your home to house your new endeavor. Decide where you’d like to see yourself in six months, a year, and five years, and begin setting long- and short-term goals. Come up with a loose timeline. Create a vision board to keep motivated in case you begin to doubt yourself.
KGO-TV Newsroom Writing Copy for AM Show
Don’t Put the Cart Before The Horse –
Don’t quit your day job just yet, unless you have at least six months of expenses saved up. If you haven’t saved up at least six months of income, keep working and saving until you have a larger financial cushion. A new endeavor will come with its own set of stresses; don’t add worrying about money to your list of concerns. Save up enough money so that you can give your new undertaking your full attention. If your job has become unbearable, find a way to look at the bright side so that you can hold off jumping ship until you’re in a better financial position. Evaluate ways to do your job better. Perhaps if you change for the better, your job will too. Ask your boss for more of your favorite tasks. If all else fails, use as many vacation and sick days as possible without actually quitting. Hold on as long as you can. I’ve learned that waiting for the next thing to happen – can sometimes be longer than you think.
If You Can Help It – Leave On Good Terms –
Filming L.A. episode of Travel Channel “Street Eats”
Quit your job in a way that doesn’t burn bridges. TV is known to be a ridiculously incestuous business. The EP you had conflict with today, could be the VP of Programming somewhere else tomorrow. Try to get along with everyone. You never know when you’ll need to deal with your boss or colleagues again, either personally or professionally. Don’t say or do anything you wouldn’t want to stake your reputation on. Some day you might need your boss to give you a glowing letter of recommendation in order to help get your foot in a new door.
Focus and Keep The Faith –
Be disciplined with your time and resources once you quit your job. Even though you won’t have to get up and go to work, keep a strict schedule so that each day is productive. During your working hours, keep the television off, refrain from sending personal emails and refuse to take personal calls. Take frequent breaks, though, so you don’t get burned out. Also, create a budget and stick to it so you don’t burn through your cash reserves. Cook meals at home instead of eating out. If weather permits, ride a bike or take public transportation instead of driving. I made sure to find freelance work to keep money coming in.
There is no secret to success or any one-way to get a project you’re passionate about off the ground. By falling these rules, many of them lessons taught to me over the years by my mother, I can honestly say my transition has been manageable. ?