As I’m sure you already know, my dad is local news maverick Steve Krafft, who just retired after 34 years of reporting. In all that time, he picked up a few tips that he passed on to me. Now, I would like to pass them on to you.
Here are some tips from my dad:
It pays to pay attention. My dad led by example throughout my childhood, constantly playing NPR on the radio and always having his trusty reporter’s notebook in the back seat ready to jot down ideas for a story. Keeping up with the news is the best way to know what people are talking about, and what’s newsworthy in this moment.
Know something about everything.
This stems all the way back to my grandpa, who taught us to learn three new things every day. My dad is always sending my siblings and me interesting articles he reads in the New York Times, about anything from Rami Malek’s new thriller podcast to a 6-mile, round-the-museum tour of the Prado Museum (articles that I pulled directly from this week’s family group chat). Knowing something about everything, if even just a few bullet points, helps give a fresh perspective on creative ways to pitch stories.
Always be nice!
I have never met anyone who didn’t have a kind word to say about my dad. He helped me learn early on that, in a world built on relationships, there is no room for anything other than kindness and a positive attitude. You’ll meet a lot of people in this industry, and quickly learn that everyone knows everyone. The last thing you want is to build a bad reputation for yourself.