Participants at the Ask the Programme Manager webinar got all the tips for cracking into the radio industry. 

The key to acquiring and enhancing the skills required in the radio industry today is to be multitalented in the digital platforms

This was the advice for those eager to break into the radio industry, from programme managers who were panelists at an Ask the Programme Manager webinar hosted by Radio Days Africa (RDA) on Monday, July 27. 

If you are not able to tell a story or connect with an audience across a plethora of platforms, your time is up, said Zane Derbyshire, programme manager at East Coast Radio. According to him, the radio industry is so vast, it’s important to train people in different disciplines for new content, especially in the digital space. 

These views were echoed by Bob Mabena, head of programming at MSG Group, owners of Power FM. He said programme managers are pressed for time, therefore people need to work out their creativity in multiple areas and in various facets to be considered in today’s working environment

“Get your foot in, in any way, shape or form, and you will find your way in if you’ve got what it takes. The more you can do, the better chances you have of getting through the door,” Mabena said.

The third panelist, Zandile Tembe, programme manager at Ukhozi FM, said that the digital space has a lot to offer, and that includes improvements on demos when applying for jobs.  I can’t listen to the same demo that sounded the same a year ago,” she said. 

On demo tapes, Derbyshire added that, “I don’t want a beautifully crafted demo, I want clips of your radio shows that you’ve doneThe shorter and more impactful, the better. If you can grab me in 10 seconds, all the better.” 

He said radio stations consider people with a basic level of experience.

“People should try [a] crack at community radio, It’s the best learning shot you could ever [get],” Derbyshire said.

RDA is an annual conference presented by the Wits Radio Academy. It is scheduled to run until July 31. 

FEATURED IMAGE: The takeaway from the 2020 Radio Days Africa annual conference is the importance of versatility. Photo: File