Why working hard isn’t enough in the sportscasting job market

When University of Memphis basketball coach Josh Pastner was a high school senior, he mailed letters to every NCAA Division I basketball coach. He wanted to be a coach and he was looking for a program that would accept him as a player/coach-in-training. He heard back from just a small handful of folks, but one of them was Lute Olson at the University of Arizona. Pastner went to Tucson, spent four years as an end-of-the-bench player, became a graduate assistant, and the rest is history.

work smarter in the sports broadcasting job market

A lot of sports broadcasters approach the job market much like Pastner approached looking for a school. They send demos and resumes to countless employers hoping to hear back from someone. What works for aspiring basketball coaches, though, almost never works for sportscasters.

You might be working hard in the sports broadcasting job market, but are you working smart?

There is a BIG difference.

Working hard is…

Sending your demo, resume and a form letter to 50 different employers and hoping that someone gets back to you.

Working smart is…

  • Targeting a manageable list of 15 or 20 employers
  • Customizing your cover letters based on your research of each employer
  • Crafting customized demos when appropriate (This is critical when applying for sports talk host and update anchor jobs outside your market).
  • Following-up consistently and creatively with each employer.
  • Building relationships with people who can help you with your search.

Working smart requires considerably more time and effort. That is why the payoff is often great for the people who do it.