Journalists must be prepared for anything. Seriously, anything.
Now, preparation isn’t limited to just having the right equipment handy and ready to go — that’s a given. You must also dress the part. And while most journos aren’t covering Fashion Week, it’s still important to look appropriate. And it certainly can’t hurt to look good, too.
I’ve heard from several people in different newsrooms that you should keep some “junk shoes” handy, in case you’re sent to a muddy field and don’t want your nice shoes ruined. To most people, these go-to shoes are a pair of old tennis shoes. My go-to shoes?
That’s right, cowboy boots. I’ve got a trusty pair of simple black ones. They’ve gotten me through construction sites and bison pens, and I have no doubt they’ll make an appearance in many more places.
The biggest rule with cowboy boots, though, is keeping it simple. Crazy colors or Ed Hardy-esque designs are just way too much.
Make sure the heel isn’t too much for you to handle and, when trying on different sizes, remember to have enough room for thicker or multiple socks if you live somewhere that gets cold. These suckers aren’t meant to keep your toes toasty.
Now for a pretty universal tip for the guys: keep a button-up and tie in your desk/locker/car/whatever.
I’ve heard several people in different newsrooms repeat this advice, and it seems sound. If you suddenly need to go interview the governor or whoever for something, you can’t exactly show up in a t-shirt. And sorry guys, but even a polo wouldn’t cut it in that situation.
Ladies, let’s have a chat about dresses. As the warm weather begins to ever-so-slowly appear, the return of these one-piece wonders is sure to follow.
I trust most of you know which styles are appropriate for work and which you should save for after hours. But as a quick refresher: cleavage is a no-no and you should be able to bend over without fear.**Or, if you’re fearless, then anyone behind you shouldn’t get a free show.
A little mystery never hurt anybody.
Obviously you can still have a little fun with your outfits with different accessories. But your sources and audience should be focused on the news, not your appearance. Keep it clean, keep it simple. Keep it classy.
Bonus tip: A journalist’s best accessory? Something to take notes with.
Whether that’s an iPhone or pen and paper…just be ready.
The news isn’t waiting for you.