The past few weeks, I’ve learned about the benefits of being proactive on the job. Working in the newsroom grants plenty of opportunities to brainstorm and jump in on stories big or small—it just depends on you to take advantage.
This week, one of the editors sent out an email on the newsroom group email system with an opportunity to write about the King Tut exhibit in Seattle (travel required). After a few moments of consideration, I decided to go for it. My email reply went something like this: “I’m interested! But I’m not sure that’s in my jurisdiction as an intern…” With a deep breath, I hit “send.”
The editor promptly replied back that unfortunately someone else had volunteered first. He didn’t say that I was out of line to volunteer to write a bigger story (outside my department, even); he just had a simple reply. I realized at that point that when I volunteer for something potentially out of my reach, the worst that will happen is they will say no. The best that could happen is I get a yes and have a great opportunity. The way I see it, the benefits outweigh the risk of being told I can’t do something.
Although I don’t get to write about “The Golden King” (which would have been awesome), I definitely don’t regret putting myself out there. I think I’m now on the editor’s radar as someone interested in writing bigger stories. If I volunteer for opportunities like this enough times, maybe one day he’ll choose me! You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take, right?
For now, I’ll just entertain myself with Steve Martin’s King Tut skit from Saturday Night Live.