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Published on October 21st, 2011 | by charliesaidthat


How to Get A Job In The Media Industry – #4TGenC

The Connected Generation in the UK Media Industry

I went to Channel 4’s, 4Talent event on Wednesday evening discussing social mobility in the creative industries and the ways in which the talent in the connected generation (Gen C) are entering, and can enter, the media industry.

This is an issue which is really close to the hearts of many who work in the media industry, myself included.

Personally, after university I felt exasperated with the lack of paid opportunities, so I started my own digital marketing agency.

The panel was incredibly diverse:

Tim & panel
Tim Campbell (chairing the event) – Entrepreneur & winner of The Apprentice

(left to right behind Tim)
Jo Swinson MP – East Dunbartonshire Liberal Democrats
Martin Bright – Chief Executive of NDotM
David Abraham – Channel 4’s CEO
Jamel Edwards – Young Entrepreneur
Andy Pickles – Entrepreneur and DJ
Hannah Musisi – Business Development Manager Turner Broadcasting
4Talent Gen C

Questioning the Media Industry Entry Paths

Question from the floor
The session looked to answer some of the most common questions;

How do you get into the media industry?
Should you take that unpaid internship?
Should you wait until a better opportunity comes up?
Or should you take the plunge and start something yourself?

Jamal Edwards

And whilst no clear answers emerged about internships, the message was loud and clear…

@4Talent: “Passion drives creative industries. Love it. Believe in it. Do it. #4TGenC


So, Is Experience better than a qualification?

In short, yes.

Experience in the media industry is vital. A degree on it’s own doesn’t really make you better placed for a job in the media industry.

David Abraham

@SkillsetSSC: “C4 CEO: degree not necessary to work in media – it’s about passion, creativity and commitment. Apprenticeships a great option too #4TGenC

The best bit of advice was to do something you love. Get stuck in, build your portfolio and be different.

You don’t have to get a degree, but if you do, think about how you can add value through your other time and activities.

You need to be more than a certificate to an interviewer.

Should Companies Lead With Better Opportunities?

Talk quickly moved from talented candidates to companies. What more can they be doing to help nurture talent in the UK?

Martin Bright

@MiniAnastasiaMartin Bright talks the Virus of Free internships! It’s a moral obligation to pay people working for your business! #4TGenC

@4TalentWe have to be extremely careful on the internship issue. We don’t want to cut off opportunities in the media industry. #4TGenC

4Talent Gen C Panel

@CoreyTDDPaying interns would encourage companies to give them worthwhile experiences and nurture the most out of them over menial tasks #4TGenC

Andy Pickles

@4TalentAppenticeships are great says@andypickles . BUT I need talent, I don’t care about qualifications. Get a good portfolio. #4TGenC

Media: Just a young person’s industry?

4Talent Gen C

Whilst the focus on this discussion was on young talent (do you need a degree, or not?). It was increasingly apparent that entering the media industry is more about demonstrating your talent and having that kick ass portfolio.

It shouldn’t matter if you are young, old, black, white and got a degree or not. What matters is the quality of your ideas and execution.
4Talent Gen C Panel

@4Talent: Have a niche. Be different and get yourself known for it says @jamaledwards #4TGenC

Key Take-aways

Get involved, whether it’s doing your own thing, or jumping at any opportunities that present themselves, free or otherwise. Just don’t expect the opportunities to come to you and have a thick skin. The media industry can seem cruel, but dust yourself down and carry on. It’s about your passion.

So get out there, get involved and start doing something you love. Persevere and make a difference.

@4Talent: Take every opportunity. The industry is full of them. Don’t be afraid. Roll up your sleeves and get stuck in! #4TGenC

Synchronised tweet

@4Talent: Want to be in media? Honestly? Don’t be afraid of rejection says David Abraham. #4TGenC

Hannah Musisi

@4Talent: Hannah Musisi says that her mentor has been extremely helpful in helping her see opportunities. #4TGenC

Very Glam


Disclaimer: I was hired by 4Talent and livetweeted from @4Talent for the duration of the event.

All the photographs above were taken by @paul_clarke, see all the #4TGenC photos and the of Paul’s amazing photography.

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About the Author

Hi I’m Charlie, a digital strategist, I have an interest in social media, SEO, lead acquisition and understanding consumer behaviour to make a definitive difference to the businesses I work with. Find me on: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | Linkedin | or just Email Me  

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