Once a month, Freshly Pressed hunt down rising professionals, all game-changers in their industry, and ask them how they got to where they are in their careers. Beyond “It is God o!”, we want to learn about their skills, systems, and story.
The internet and social media may slowly be taking over television and radio especially in relaying the news and that is why broadcasting is ever-evolving with the times. But if you still love to listen in the mornings or in cars to a calming voice interchanged with music on the radio, then you would love to meet a versatile on-air personality in this interview.
Today, we had a chat with a radio broadcaster and she shared what the important skillsets are to succeed in broadcasting, journalism, and voice-over art.
FP: What do you do?
I am a broadcaster, voice-over artist and content creator, and writer. I currently work at Dukia Radio.
Dukia Radio is an online gospel radio station. Nigeria, being a secular state does not allow for religious stations hence why most religious stations can only be online and not terrestrial.
It is a 24/7 radio based in Lagos and I’m the Production/Studio Manager. It’s been in existence for over 4years but went off the air shortly last year till I came on board this January. Presently we have an audience based all over Nigeria and in the United States. In a day we record about 500 people who listen to us from abroad.
The station is owned by The Wells Oasis International of Pastor Bidemi Mark-Mordi. A family, purpose, and leadership radio station geared at empowering every listener with the knowledge to give life full expression. Its content is purely inspirational, purpose-driven, and life-changing. This is why our motto is Activating Purpose and Enhancing Pursuit.
FP: How did you begin your career?
I have always loved the media but preferred journalism because I believed I’m not eloquent. But when I was in 200level in college, I had an assignment that had to do with anchoring a show. I did it and everyone working there gave me a standing ovation when I was through asking if I’ve ever worked in the media. From there I was connected with stations and got my first job as a Voice Over Artist.
FP: How relevant is your undergraduate major to your work?
It is very relevant. It boosted my confidence and built my passion. Working in the school’s studio from 200level till I graduated made me love the studio environment.
FP: How does your job affect your general lifestyle?
I’m always thinking about content. I listen to people and watch things that others won’t pay attention to whenever I’m in a public space. I am always like how do I create content out of the happenings in my surrounding?
FP: How did you become interested in this field?
I grew up listening to Radio OYO. It was my companion most of the time so, it was only right I follow that path.
FP: What kind of education, training, or background does your job require?
To be a broadcaster, Mass Communication is the course to start with in Nigeria and you can major in Broadcasting in your final year. There are many broadcast training institutions in Nigeria that offer the vocational training needed. Radio Nigeria Training School, NTA Training School in Jos, etc are some of the places you can earn a certificate and learn the ropes of the ever-evolving profession. Also, you need passion and a never-say-never attitude to carve a niche for yourself.
FP: What skills, abilities, and personal attributes are essential to success in your job?
You must be an eloquent speaker of whichever language you want to use. You’re not allowed to stammer, use fillers, or pause while on air. Your diction and elocution must be top-notch. There are many diction tutors online that can help with this; if you devote some minutes of each day, in a few months, you’ll see the difference in how you speak. It is not about faking an accent but speaking well.
You must have a nose for news; know what your target audience wants at each season and time. Be patient to achieve (you won’t make a name for yourself overnight). Be ready to volunteer in as many organizations as you can because broadcast houses rarely put out adverts that they need staff and you have to find them out yourself. Volunteering allows you to build your brand and carve your niche, it also provides you with a foot in the door.
FP: What kinds of accomplishments tend to be valued and rewarded in this field?
Whatever show you’re anchoring, how accepted is it? Does it impact society? Are people always eager to listen to you? The impact of your show will be recognized.
FP: What current issues and trends in the field should we know about?
Online news media is taking over and changing the face of broadcasting. It is no longer just about radio and television. We have online radios and TV stations at the moment and the National Broadcasting Commission has made it compulsory for all radio stations to have an online presence.
FP: What is something you wish you knew earlier in your career?
Volunteering is the way to go if you will penetrate the field soon enough. I would have put in more effort in that aspect.
FP: What do you like most about your work?
I like the anonymity radio gives. People recognize your voice but not your face. (😂Not always now, though) I love that it helps explore my creative side.
FP: If you could do it all over again, would you choose the same path for yourself? If not, what would you change?
I definitely would do this but I would start earlier than I did.
Tope Stephen is a broadcast journalist, VOA, Writer, and Political Analyst. She lives with her family in Lagos, Nigeria.
Do you have a budding/great career? Have you a growing business? We invite you to tell our audience about it. Inspire students, upcoming professionals, entrepreneurs, goal-getters, and those who may be struggling to get on their feet. If you would like to share about it, shoot us a mail at email@example.com or click WhatsApp. We’d love to hear from you.