NBC’s today show‘s host Matt Lauer came on campus to speak today. He was one of the greatest public speakers I’ve seen yet. He was remarkably down-to-earth and his overall tone was both gracious and conversational.
His advice for upcoming journalists: Study a specialty (which is one of the aims of this blog- to gain an insight on anything and everything related to health/fitness/nutrition). “If I were to do it over again, I’d study the environment,” said Lauer. Good choice.
He also advised to develop a “thick skin”. There will always be critics and it’s there job to critique you. “Ask yourself the question: do you have what it takes?” he said. Surrounding yourself with good people that will be honest with you are also essential Lauer told us. After all, you need to have someone out there to tell you if what you’re producing is crap.
His best interview advice: Listen. This is key. The real difference between a sloppy journalist and a good journalist is how well they pay attention to their interviewee so that their questions have continuity and interest.
He also said it’s important to put yourself in the other person’s shoes. “I try not to judge people because I don’t know everything.”
When asked about entrepeneurial journalisms (blogs, websites, etc.), he said that they are “the wave of the future”.
“You can all have your voice heard…and somebody somewhere will read it. I’m a big, big fan and wish I was a little more up [to date] with it.” Yay for blogs! I’m also a personal fan, haha.
Matt Lauer was simply an inspiration. Though he does have to get up at 4 o’clock every morning and do almost 2 hours of homework every night, a schedule which seems much more rigorous than my own as a student, Lauer ultimately gets to wake up and go to a job everyday that he loves. He’s been working with the NBC Today Show for 16 years. While he says he looks forward to the last few years remaining on his contract, he plans on “slowing down” sometime in the near future.
“I look forward to the days when I can take my kids to school in the morning,” he said with a smile on his face. “I also want to give others the chance to have this job.” Well said. I’m sure that more than enough people would be willing take his place.