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Old 03-31-2011, 04:51 PM
ferlonjr ferlonjr is offline
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Default I've been made Chief after 5 months in the biz.!

Hey guys, I've been made chief photog at my station (market 89) and I've only been in the biz. for 5 months next week. It feels weird but I couldn't turn the opportunity down when it came up.

Two problems:

1) I don't really know what to do different or the same now. What do I do different with everyone and the same, how do handle the new responsiblities?

2) They want to switch me from nightside (1:45-10:45) to dayside (9:30-6:30) which I don't want. I work with a great reporter and EP (we have a good thing going) and all is well (I've gotten so much better while working with them and continue to do so). Is there something I can say that I can convince my News Director to help me stay nightside or do I just have to deal with it?

Thanks so much in advance guys and any other advice or comments about this is greatly appreciated!

-Ferlon

Last edited by ferlonjr; 05-10-2011 at 10:09 AM.
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Old 03-31-2011, 06:39 PM
Tom Servo Tom Servo is offline
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If you want to be chief, you're gonna have to be, at least mostly, dayside. The chief liaises with the ND and the GM, and they work days.

As to what to do different, since you're still, as the kids say, a noob, were I in your shoes I'd keep my head down and work on gear/vehicle/etc issues. I certainly wouldn't be holding critiques of my colleagues at this point because they'll (probably rightly) tell you precisely what lake you can jump in.

I don't really envy you your situation. While I can't say that I wouldn't have jumped at a salary/resume bump at 5 months in (especially since 1st job wages are generally somewhat below starvation level), I'm kind of glad the opportunity didn't present itself. I'd have felt very uncomfortable taking a leadership role in something I had less than half a year experience in.
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Old 03-31-2011, 08:17 PM
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That's my thing, I do feel uncomfortable. It's just odd but at the same time I'm glad about it, it is a blessing. And like you sad first jobs start right at the starvation level, so I had to take the raise, I'd feel pretty stupid if I didn't.

The job was offered to me yesterday, I didn't ask, they just saw fit to put me there. The fired the chief about 3 weeks ago, which really sucked, but hey...

But thanks for the advice! I was thinking the same thing, that I'd not do any critiques on anything but "keep my head down" so to speak and just take care of my extra responsiblities.
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Old 04-01-2011, 01:41 PM
Tom Servo Tom Servo is offline
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They fired the chief? Well, first thing then is to figure out what he did to get fired, and make sure you don't do that
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Old 04-01-2011, 03:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Servo View Post
They fired the chief? Well, first thing then is to figure out what he did to get fired, and make sure you don't do that
They fired him because he lost the company's iphone and prior to that (about a year before) lost a receiver. He was a great worker but they hate when people lose stuff (understandable) but it really didn't make sense to get rid of him. But things are working out for him though. So that is what I will continue to be careful of.
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Old 04-02-2011, 11:58 PM
torontophotog torontophotog is offline
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Hold on... he was fired for losing an iPhone, and a year earlier, a receiver??! There's more to that story for sure.
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Old 04-04-2011, 01:19 PM
Tom Servo Tom Servo is offline
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Agreed. Either there's more to that story, or you should already be planning what to do when you get fired. Stuff gets lost and broken in this business. It just happens. They can't expect you to do stories on speedboats, hanging out of helicopters, and chasing fire and swat crews around without something occasionally falling out of your pocket. If they do, you're working for the wrong people.
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Old 04-04-2011, 03:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by torontophotog View Post
Hold on... he was fired for losing an iPhone, and a year earlier, a receiver??! There's more to that story for sure.
Everyone thinks the same thing that there is something more, but then again he had to sign a paper stating that if he ever lost something again he would be terminated. So.... I definitely don't agree with the system but what can you do?...
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Old 04-04-2011, 03:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Servo View Post
Agreed. Either there's more to that story, or you should already be planning what to do when you get fired. Stuff gets lost and broken in this business. It just happens. They can't expect you to do stories on speedboats, hanging out of helicopters, and chasing fire and swat crews around without something occasionally falling out of your pocket. If they do, you're working for the wrong people.
I completely agree with this as well. When I saw he was fired, I said, man I could be fired at any time as well, I realized my job was not that secure, and had to start making plans. My goal is and has been always, to shoot my stories and edit them to the best of my ability and keep improving so if that day ever comes I'll have some good stuff for a reel so I can find another job (even though eventually I'll be applying for other jobs anyway).
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Old 04-07-2011, 01:10 PM
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I don't envy your situation. I wish you the best of luck. That being said, and please don't take this personally, but a station offering a chief job to someone only 5 months into his FIRST job tells you all you need to know about how this station/company views its photogs. Not a good place to be.
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Old 04-07-2011, 05:07 PM
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For now, keep your head down. Make sure all your gear is in as good of shape as you can possibly get it. Make a list of stuff you need and make sure you can justify WHY you need it. Remember downtime? Now forget it. Anytime you have a break you should be checking out vehicles, going through live trucks, checking gear and/or looking for ways to improve your skills as a photojournalist. Learn your gear, live trucks and edit bays, inside and out. Attend as many meetings as they'll let you in the door for and pay attention.

I've been in the biz over 15 yrs and a medium/large market chief for over five years and I still learn something on every shoot, every meeting, every convention and every time I talk to someone with different experiences. Basically, right now, be a sponge and absorb everything you can. No one ever knows-it-all.
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Old 04-08-2011, 02:18 PM
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Thanks again for the comments guys! And I know what you mean about someone making someone chief after 5 months on his first job is weird... but nevertheless I wasn't turning it down considering my previous wage. But yeah the next place I work I would like the guy to be a REAL chief and be able to teach me a lot more than I know now or will know then (even though I spend a lot of time trying to perfect my craft on my own, watching nppa photogs and learning from you all).

And I will start spending my down time checking vehicles and maintaining equipment, thanks for that, I honestly wouldn't have done this if you had not said it. I'll keep learning, and keep asking questions, because I definitely don't know it all.

-Ferlon
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Old 04-08-2011, 06:34 PM
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It's people that make the newscast work. Take care of your people the best you can.
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Old 04-09-2011, 06:10 PM
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I believe i know the place and who you replaced.

If it is the place i am thinking, keeping your head down is a good idea. Up your learning curve as best you can. Learn and know your equipment, because if its where i think it is, it is all new there for the most part.

As far as the time change. You learn more by changing things up. SO, while it is nice being in a comfortable environment, as in knowing how things will work. You will become a better person overall, especially in news in putting yourself in a new environment/time slot.
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Old 04-12-2011, 03:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cornelio78 View Post
I believe i know the place and who you replaced.

If it is the place i am thinking, keeping your head down is a good idea. Up your learning curve as best you can. Learn and know your equipment, because if its where i think it is, it is all new there for the most part.

As far as the time change. You learn more by changing things up. SO, while it is nice being in a comfortable environment, as in knowing how things will work. You will become a better person overall, especially in news in putting yourself in a new environment/time slot.
I didn't realize you had posted on this page! That's definitely something I needed to hear, "adjusting to a new environment", because that was bothering me for a while, but seeing how change does help a lot in developing someone as a person, I see how it's going to be a good thing. Thanks again man!
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Old 04-21-2011, 01:42 PM
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Most importantly, treat your staff with respect! If someone messes up, ask for their side of the story and try to understand what went wrong. It is more important to fix the problem and make sure it never happens again than it is to punish the offender...

Learn as much about your craft as you can and become a teacher as well as a leader.
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Old 06-11-2011, 02:19 PM
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Give Praise publicly. Criticize in private. And when you do criticize in private give them a time table to work/improve
on something if needed and then try to end on a positive with something they are doing well.
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Old 06-11-2011, 02:20 PM
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Give Praise publicly. Criticize in private. And when you do criticize in private give them a time table to work/improve on something if needed and then try to end on a positive with something they are doing well.
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Last edited by thru-the-lens; 06-11-2011 at 02:21 PM. Reason: removed huge gap in sentence
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  #19  
Old 06-17-2011, 11:25 AM
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If you need the promotion, take it !!!!....esp working in news and the bump in pay ????
Whatever you do, BE HUMBLE but confident and NOT cocky !!!...I was the Director of Photography on a 1/2 hour home show, worked with an Assistant who'd been laid off from his Chief Photographer job while in Houston, he was only 24 (from what I remembered)....Even though he was OK to work with and did his job, he was very cocky and arrogant, esp since he had just been promoted to CP....many veterans under him didn't respect him, since they had been in the business longer....Again, be humble about the position, but also confident in your abilities.....The best supervisors are always the best leaders......Now, if your station fired the old CP for equipment issues, there's way more to the story, since I was fired too long ago, but it was because the Managing Producer was an idiot, didn't know how to handle stressful situations.....
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Old 06-17-2011, 11:26 AM
paulisphotoman paulisphotoman is offline
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If you need the promotion, take it !!!!....esp working in news and the bump in pay ????
Whatever you do, BE HUMBLE but confident and NOT cocky !!!...I was the Director of Photography on a 1/2 hour home show, worked with an Assistant who'd been laid off from his Chief Photographer job while in Houston, he was only 24 (from what I remembered)....Even though he was OK to work with and did his job, he was very cocky and arrogant, esp since he had just been promoted to CP....many veterans under him didn't respect him, since they had been in the business longer....Again, be humble about the position, but also confident in your abilities.....The best supervisors are always the best leaders......Now, if your station fired the old CP for equipment issues, there's more to the story, since I was fired too long ago, but it was because the Managing Producer was an idiot, didn't know how to handle stressful situations.....
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