#Grazia10 Invites Us In To ‘Meet The Newsmakers’

Grazia Magazine – the UK’s first weekly glossy – are celebrating their 10th anniversary and they are most definitely doing it in style! Introducing – #Grazia10! This three-week celebration includes a series of ‘Ten Talks’ with inspirational speakers and panel events, and an exhibition, which are all being held at the Getty Images Gallery.

The ‘Ten Talks’ have been arranged to cover a range of topics including love, feminism, technology, celebrity and the one that we went down to, ‘Meet the Newsmakers’. Verge’s Tasha Demi headed down to the Gallery on Wednesday evening to catch some of the biggest female names in current affairs speaking all things surrounding major news events, personal experiences, and lessons they’ve learnt along the way to the top.

Radio 4’s Mishal Husain headed up the female strong panel which included co-author of ‘I Am Malala’, Christina Lamb, Al Jazeera’s Sue Turton, Newsnight presenter Emily Maitlis, and Sky’s Jayne Secker.

The last 10 years has seen the world of journalism change immensely – and of course any change comes with both negatives and positives. Al Jazeera’s Sue Turton explained that, “Before technology, journalists had more time to think about things before they said them. Now, you don’t”. This is one of the factors of journalism which has dramatically changed. Christina Lamb went on to explain how hard it used to be to get a story back to the newsroom and get it out. Journalists used to have to phone in their stories, so can you imagine the difficulty of this when your on the front line in Afghanistan? She explained that sometimes when they called in with a story, they’d have to leave the phone line open so they could quickly pass over their stories without any more waiting time – “This did result in huge phone bills though”, she laughed.

All 5 of these ladies have worked their way through the ranks over the last decade and due to the growth in the Internet and the boom of social media, their jobs have shifted a lot too! But what do they think of it all? What do they think of the ‘citizen journalist’ and Twitter? Sky’s Jayne Secker lead the discussion with an interesting point, “In a weird way, it makes our work look slightly…old fashioned? You know, as opposed to the real energy of the shaky hand held camera…”. Mishal Husain then jumped in and said, “Yeah exactly! (Laughs). And on the same note, even though we get find out through Twitter news as it happens, verification of the stories is so hard. You never really know, and that’s a risky place to be in…”

Sue explained that as well as being careful with what we tweet, we have to also be careful with what we believe on social media. “I don’t know how I’d do my job without Twitter now though” commented Jayne. “Me too. The first thing I look at in the morning is Twitter. Because of my job at a Sunday paper though, it does mean I am quite restricted is what I tweet and when. You don’t want your competitor to run with a story before you do…” added Christina. “Never tweet if you’re pissed, or pissed off”, was the gem given to us by Jayne!

With so many aspiring journalists out there, and so many people taking to their own blogs to kickstart their journey, these leading ladies gave us some key advice:

“Don’t procrastinate! Learn to write things quickly. Something I love about this job, is that sense of the daily deadline. That sense of just get it out – imperfection. Just get it done! ” Jayne Secker

“You have to be nosey, pushy, curious… Don’t take no for an answer! You’ve got to be bloody determined. Oh, and you should know that it’s not a 9 to 5! Also, women have to be a bit more ballsy. We have to smash the glass ceiling more and ask for more!” Emily Maitlis

“You have to know that you can tackle anyone. It doesn’t matter who they are. Everyone who is reading your article or watching you, wants to know the answer. So ask the right questions.” Sue Turton

Being a journalist is a hugely thrilling job and it’s clear that each of these ladies truly love what they’re doing. But it’s clearly no trip in the park either! Being a successful journalist nowadays, is in some way easier than before, because you can now give yourself a head start with your own blog which can help you get noticed.

Here are Verge’s Tasha Demi’s five top tips to get started and get ahead in the world of journalism:

1. Work hard – Pretty obvious right? But you can’t cheat real, hard work.

2. Work to deadline – Never miss a deadline, always be early. News loses it’s Same goes for meetings, and interviews – always be there 15 minutes before you need to be.

3. Always do more than expected – Go the extra mile! Add that extra bit of spark to your work.

4. Embrace the world of social networking – This is the World we live in, so you may as well use it to your advantage! There’s no end to your reach when you use your social networks properly.

5. Never stop networking – This is a super important point! At no point in your career should you ever feel that your contact book is strong enough.

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Images: Courtesy of Getty Images

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