Monday, November 5, 2018

Sports Broadcasting Executives: Three Tips for Hiring Decisions

Sports broadcasting executives have many applicants to choose from, and constantly go through extensive hiring processes. However, it's clear that the vast majority of play-by-play broadcasting positions are held by older, white men. As an undergraduate student at Northwestern, I found two articles that hiring executives will find interesting regarding hiring women in broadcasting roles. 

The first article "Where are all the women in Play-by-play broadcasting?" was written by freelance writer Britni de la Critaz and published on The Ringer. The article discusses why the broadcasting landscape looks the way it does. It delves into the notable trend of more women in broadcasting roles, while maintaining perspective that the trend makes up a small percentage of all broadcasting jobs. She also breaks down why women have the roles they have. For example, the vast majority of women in sports broadcasting are confined to sideline roles, and many male listeners say they find women's voices "annoying, shrill or grating" on play by play. She also talks with Dan D'Uva, who teaches sports broadcasting at Syracuse, about his thoughts on the future of women in sports broadcasting. 


The next article, "Gender inequality in sports broadcasting improved, but work remains" was written by Jerry Liu on the Spartan Newsroom website. Similar to the first article on The Ringer, Liu breaks down the gender disparity in the sports broadcasting field, but points out the increasing trend of female broadcasters. His wide array of sources include broadcasters, journalism teachers and the vice president of the MSU chapter of the Association for Women in Sports Media. The sources all agree that the gender imbalance is a problem, and point out ways that it is being solved, and more things that can be done. For example Dan Dickerson, the Detroit Tigers broadcaster, says men need to be more involved in encouraging aspiring female broadcasters to go for play-by-play roles, rather than settling for sideline reporter jobs. 

Based on these two articles, and my experiences at Northwestern, I have developed three action items broadcasting executives should consider the next time they are making hiring decisions:

Hire Boldly: People need to be willing to change the status quo when it comes to who is on the air, and what roles they are in.

Think Broadcast Diversity: It’s critical to have a healthy and representative variety of perspectives provided on all broadcasts.

Look for Balance: In order to achieve both of those previous goals, your organization needs to provide equal opportunities for different members who apply

Overall, broadcasting executives need to be aware of this trend, and need to consider women as a critical demographic when making hiring decisions.

Matt McHugh is a senior journalism student at Northwestern University. Matt is the director of WNUR Sports, the student-run radio station on campus. You can reach out to him on Twitter or LinkedIn.

Brand Reputation is Now More Important Than Ever

As a public relations or strategic communications professional, you understand the hefty value of your brand and its reputation's impact of your company's bottom line. 

I am a senior at the Medill School of Journalism also studying in the Integrated Marketing Communications program. During my previous work experience in media analytics with Zignal Labs, I became convinced of the value social and news monitoring can add to businesses and I recently came across two excellent articles that explain why. 
How to Use Media Data to Measure Brand Reputation written by Tom Howells of Zignal Labs stresses the importance of not just having a data overload of all things potentially relevant to your brand, but instead having a tight grasp on the specific topics of conversation that revolve around your brand's values. Tom also stresses the competitive insights brand reputation data can provide, "Every company wants to be known as a thought leader within their space. One way to calculate their effectiveness is to look at all the conversations within an industry and measure the number of times each competitor is mentioned, as well as looking for how they are mentioned — are they mentioned positively, considered a thought leader or being associated with a particular trait?" 

Photo C/O Unsplash:    
"Branding is no longer limited to what consumers experience when they encounter a company’s advertising, marketing, communications, or customer service representatives," according to the CMO Insights and Analysis publication on the Wall Street Journal website. Deloitte says there is an increasing connection between a brands reputation and perception and their underlying business operations performance. According to the Deloitte article, the relationship between operations and a brand's reputation health is strong because a reputation is rooted in trust, which requires a brand to consistently deliver a consistent product. “The closer a customer experience is to the brand promise, the healthier the brand,” writes Deloitte. 

Based on these two articles and my academic experience at Northwestern University, I have created a list of 3 items for you to consider next time you are evaluating your company's brand health, looking to mitigate reputational future risks or making strategic decisions regarding your brand's values. 

The most important aspect of a brand’s reputation is trust, and what better way to establish trust than to give your customers a clear, truthful brand value proposition that your product can deliver on.

2. ACTIVELY LISTENThey say to keep your friends close but your enemies closer, so I suggest you listen and develop a through understanding of the space your brand occupies in the marketplace as well as your brands strengths and weakness compared to your competition.

The best defense has always been and will always be a good offense, so sound operational performance is the best way to ensure your brand reputation stays spotless.

Northwestern Student
Class of 2019

Name and Metadata/Tags not included because student does not want to limit future employment opportunities.