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26 Questions and Answers by Christina Erne
Updated August 23rd, 2018 | Christina Erne is a meteorologist and a journalist at News 10 ABC in Albany, NY.
Job Interviews     Careers     Media    

Question 1 of 26

What is your favorite story you have ever covered?

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1.

What is your favorite story you have ever covered?

The candidate should give an example of their favorite story and why it is their favorite. They may discuss how much work they put into it, how difficult it was to interview, or how emotional the story became. An interviewer is looking for a candidate who is passionate about the stories they cover and want to know that they hire someone who will constantly strive to write and report the best stories possible. A candidate should prove their dedication to reporting though this answer.

Christina's Answer

"My favorite story is when I covered a boy being saved from a burning building. I interviewed the mother who was grateful her son was saved, and I caught the moment of them being reunited on camera. This was the most passionate story I have ever captured and took creative writing to make it just right."

2.

What experience do you have making difficult decisions surrounding tragic stories?

A hiring manager is looking for a candidate who is able to report on often sad or emotional stories with a level head. The candidate must show they are able of reporting on difficult stories by making good ethical decisions. A good response would be to give examples of previous difficult stories and how the candidate has dealt with covering it, despite the tragedy or emotions involved with it.

Christina's Answer

"No matter the emotional aspect of the story I report on, I am able to keep my professional work separate from my personal emotions. While I have covered many stories where parents have lost young children in a tragic event, I must report the story fairly and accurately, and must keep my own emotions separate so I can give the story the time and justice it deserves."

3.

What unique qualities can you offer our station/newspaper/website?

The candidate should respond by finding a way to set his or herself apart from the other potential candidates applying for the same position. The candidate should mention specific traits and skills they possess that make them the best possible reporter at the specific station or publication and why it makes them the perfect choice to fill the position.

Christina's Answer

"While I am sure there are many qualified reporters for this job, I was born and raised in this town, and I know the people and the news here better than anyone else. I know the local language and how to draw in readers because I am a source that they trust."

4.

How do you work under pressure?

A reporter is expected to produce well written and visual stories often in less than a day. Tight deadlines often put much stress on reporters, and the hiring manager wants to see if the candidate is able to put up with the high stress career. A good response discusses the candidate's ability to produce good work while rushed or under pressure.

Christina's Answer

"I understand what it takes to create a story in just a few hours and still have it be my best work possible. I have experience writing clean work quickly with little to no mistakes for editors to check over, and I often enjoy the rush of being put under pressure to create my stories."

5.

What are your career aspirations in the future?

The candidate can respond well by discussing how this current job would positively affect their career goals. They should discuss their aspirations for the future and how working at this station or publication will help them improve and eventually reach their goals.

Christina's Answer

"In the future, I hope to settle down with a family in Florida working for a news station. However, I am looking forward to taking a job here to improve my skills and form a strong relationship with the staff because I sense that there is much talent here from which I can learn."

6.

Have you progressed in your career as you have expected?

All people move through a career at various paces. The candidate should answer the question honestly and discuss the changes that have taken place over the course of their working career that have lead them to applying for this job. They should be positive about the future within the company as a reporter, even if the past has not been as fluid or quick as they had hoped.

Christina's Answer

"Honestly, it has taken me a few extra years to progress to a job such as this one, although I have worked extremely hard to get here. Now that I have the opportunity to work in this city as a reporter, I know I will continue to grow as a person in this career."

7.

What is your experience with social media?

The candidate must demonstrate their extensive knowledge and mastery of social media. A successful reporter knows how to reach out to find stories on social media, as well as informing the public on the most up to date and breaking stories on social media platforms as they happen. The candidate should respond by giving examples of how they have used social media in past reporter jobs and how frequently they plan on posting and updating their sites in the current job.

Christina's Answer

"I extensively use Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to update my viewers. I produce Facebook Lives every shift so the public will be on top of the stories I am covering that day before our nightly newscast. I have gained many followers over the years and they have given me story tips on my social media accounts."

8.

Why do you want to report on this specific area?

A candidate must use this question to set themselves apart from the others applying for the position by discussing why they will be a good addition to the news team in that area. The candidate should talk about their familiarity with the surrounding communities, the local hot topics, the environment, and any of the local stories that matter most.

Christina's Answer

"I want to be a reporter in New York City because I not only love the city and love the seasons, but I believe I am a perfect reporter to cover local breaking news. I am familiar with the businesses downtown and the issues business owners face there, and I feel that New York City business owners would have a trusted source to come to with me in town."

9.

What are some techniques you use to evoke emotion from your interviews?

A good response is to discuss how the candidate creates stories that do not only report facts, but also tell a story full of emotion. The candidate should discuss the types of questions they ask to interview emotional characters to evoke their strongest feelings about the subject. They should also talk about some of their favorite stories in the past and how they used thinking outside of the box to make the story unique and interesting.

Christina's Answer

"In every story I produce, I try to first write a story with strictly the facts, then I go back and add specific quotes from the person I interviewed that show their passion about the subject. I include pauses they may leave in speaking to best show their personality as well as their story."

10.

What time of day do you work best?

Reporters work around the clock, and there are many shifts open based on when the candidate feels they work the best. Reporters should figure out what time of the day they create their best work, and tell this to the hiring manager, so they can see how well the person may fit into the current open schedule. The candidate should also discuss how if made to work at a different time than is what they want, they could still work well for the company.

Christina's Answer

"I consider myself a night owl, and do my best work later at night. I would be a great nightside reporter going live at 11 p.m. However, I can work at any time of day, and know I would be able to adjust to a dayside team because I am very flexible."

11.

If you could start your career over, what path would you take?

The candidate should discuss another interest they have in careers and how while that path might not have been the right one for them at the time, the skills they possess help them in being a reporter.

Christina's Answer

"I wanted to be a history teacher years ago, because I love to tell stories to others. I am a great speaker and have a great memory. However, I realized being a reporter was the best career fit for me because I still get to tell stories, yet I get to create them myself."

12.

How do you plan to form relationships with officials in the community?

A successful reporter not only finds the right people to talk to for a story, but also keeps a working relationship with the person or group so they may be able to reference them in the future. The candidate should discuss with the hiring manager how they stay in touch with contacts they have used and how they plan to make his or herself a trustworthy person for that contact to want to help again.

Christina's Answer

"I know how important it is to create working relationships with good contacts in the area. I have experience working well alongside police officers, and I know at your station I will be able to keep in touch with police officers well and be sure to keep their information quiet until they allow us to release it so we may build up trust with them."

13.

Do you consider yourself approachable?

A successful reporter is able to talk to anyone about any topic and gather information. A reporter must have an approachable personality so that they can approach anyone, whether someone is happy to talk about their story, or does not want to talk about an emotional one. A good response explains the candidate's personality and how they plan to talk to strangers in various situations and gain the insight and information they need to cover the story.

Christina's Answer

"I consider myself a friendly person who always approaches others with a smile, or with a gentle voice. I consider myself open, so others feel comfortable sharing their story with me, even in times of despair."

14.

How are your organizational skills?

A successful reporter is well organized and is able to juggle various types of stories and contacts from many different fields. The reporter should respond by discussing what organizational skills they possess and how their skills will help them be a good fit for the job.

Christina's Answer

"I am a very organized person who keeps folders of all my story ideas, and contacts. I keep my job organized in this way so I am always able to access phone numbers, addresses, and previous notes on a story quickly, so I can be sure to make deadline for the day."

15.

How would you describe your writing style?

The candidate may respond by describing their writing style and how it fits well into the job description. A successful response provides examples of how the candidate's writing has been strong in the past, and how the style would fit well in the current job.

Christina's Answer

"I describe my writing as descriptive and colorful. My writing has been successful in the past because I have had many people approach me in my previous job telling me how interesting and fun my writing was, and I believe I can use the same colorful and visual writing in this job to bring the words to life and attract new readers."

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Interview Questions

  1. What is your favorite story you have ever covered?
  2. What experience do you have making difficult decisions surrounding tragic stories?
  3. What unique qualities can you offer our station/newspaper/website?
  4. How do you work under pressure?
  5. What are your career aspirations in the future?
  6. Have you progressed in your career as you have expected?
  7. What is your experience with social media?
  8. Why do you want to report on this specific area?
  9. What are some techniques you use to evoke emotion from your interviews?
  10. What time of day do you work best?
  11. If you could start your career over, what path would you take?
  12. How do you plan to form relationships with officials in the community?
  13. Do you consider yourself approachable?
  14. How are your organizational skills?
  15. How would you describe your writing style?
  16. What is your experience working with a photographer?
  17. How do you work as part of a team?
  18. Why did you decide to become a reporter?
  19. How do you plan to find new stories to cover?
  20. How does this position fit into your career plans?
  21. Why did you decide to become a reporter over other writing jobs?
  22. What are your benefits expectations?
  23. What are your salary expectations?
  24. If you could choose just one subject to report on, what would it be?
  25. What is the most difficult story you have ever covered?
  26. Why is this job a good fit?
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