Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views : Ad Clicks : Ad Views :

A Day in the Career of… Caitriona Perry, News Anchor & Author

1080 Views
The best piece of career advice Caitriona Perry received was to always be prepared to work harder and longer than everyone else to get to where you want to be.
From a successful stint as Washington Correspondent to her promotion this year as Co-Anchor of RTE 1’s Six One News, following this advice throughout her career has paid of for the Dublin native.
Caitriona speaks to The Daily Slog about Trump country, ambition, and the importance of never giving up on your dreams.

 

What time do you usually get up and how do you start your day? 

My day now is quite different than it has been for the rest of my professional career as I have a set workday that is mostly Monday to Friday building up to the live broadcast of the RTÉ Six One News.

Generally my day starts with Morning Ireland, some sort of exercise, be it a class at the gym or a run outside, and reading the newspapers from Ireland and the US. There is also always coffee and usually a homemade juice so I’m getting a good dose of fruits and veggies early in the day.

 

Take us on a jaunt through your career to date…

I always wanted to be a journalist, writing books and poems as a young girl, and recording my own radio shows on a little tape recorder so I was very focused on what I would do when I left school.

I did an undergraduate degree in journalism in DCU and went to work on a placement as an unpaid intern at NewsTalk which at the time was just starting up as a local Dublin station. At the end of my 12 week DCU placement I was offered a fulltime job. I was there for 2.5 years or so and then I moved onto Today FM where I was the courts correspondent and the Deputy Head of News for a time.

 

I’m a firm believer in setting a goal and going after it. Ambition is not a dirty word.

 

Then after about another 2.5 years I was offered a job at RTE News, so I moved there in May 2007 and have been there ever since. During my time at RTE, I returned to study part-time for my Masters in International Relations at DCU. As anyone who has worked full-time while studying for a Masters, it is quite a challenging time but it’s all about time management.

I started working in radio news in RTE as that was my background at the time, and then I gradually moved into television news reporting. If you want to be successful in journalism nowadays you have to have the full skillset across all platforms. I was appointed Washington Correspondent in November 2013 and had the time of my life working in the US for four years. It’s only a four year posting so my time was up and I moved back to Ireland at the start of this year to take up my current role as co-presenter of the SixOne News.

 

Caitriona Perry

 

Was there a key turning point in your career that you can attribute to your success?

Not really. I’ve always been very determined and worked very hard. I’m a firm believer in setting a goal and going after it. Ambition is not a dirty word! My current role as a presenter is a little different as I never went looking for this job, it was offered to me, so that is a very different experience for me.

 

You were Washington Correspondent at a really interesting period in U.S. politics. What was your experience of the Trump presidential campaign supporters and what prompted you to write your book ‘In America: Tales from Trump Country’?

I had always wanted to write a book – ask any of my friends, they will tell you I have never shut up talking about it since I was a teenager! It was a great privilege to be asked to write one because publishers felt there was an interest in what I would have to say about the current US political system and the election of Donald Trump, so I was in a very different position to most people who slog and slog for years looking for a publisher.

 

Caitriona Perry

 

The book did so well and I spent the first part of this year re-visiting many of the voters I interviewed for the book which, along with my analysis of President Trump’s first year in office, formed a new bonus chapter for the updated paperback edition which just went on sale at the beginning of May. It was great to be able to stay focused on US politics, which I’m really passionate about, during the first few months that I’ve been back in Ireland…it’s felt like a good transition from one life to another.

 

The best mentors that I have are people with whom the relationship has come about organically, where we have a good friendship as well as a good working relationship and where we both respect each other’s work.

 

Do you have a mentor?

I believe very firmly in the benefits of mentors. I don’t think they have to be part of a formal structure, but I do think it is important to always have people in your own organization and in your wider industry who are more senior and more advanced than you who you can turn to for advice and guidance, or even just to toss ideas around with.

I have a few people in RTE and a few people working at a high level in British and US media who have helped me greatly at various points of my career.

The best mentors that I have are people with whom the relationship has come about organically, where we have a good friendship as well as a good working relationship and where we both respect each other’s work.

Now that I have been working as a journalist for almost twenty years myself, I’ve also become a mentor for younger colleagues so it is really nice to be able to return the favours that others have done for me by paying it forward to the next cohort of journalists!

 

How do you relax & de-stress at the end of the day and during difficult periods? 

I am an exercise nut. I feel there is nothing better to declutter your mind than to get sweaty and put your body through physical exertion. I try to do some sort of exercise every day, that can range from a hard cardio- or strength-training workout to pilates or just a walk. Fresh air is a great tonic, but, when travelling for work, I have also been known to hit the treadmill in a hotel gym at midnight to snatch a twenty minute run. Doing physical exercise gives your brain a break from over-thinking whatever is consuming your day, and actually a long run can help work through problems.

I also love cooking and if I have the time, I find preparing a fancy meal, or a dinner party for good friends is an excellent way to destress and unwind….and of course there is a great reward to be had in eating the fruits of your labour, accompanied by a nice glass of red and good conversation!

 

Nobody else is responsible for your career but you. You have to put in the hard graft and take control of the direction, do not wait for somebody else to do that for you.

 

What has been the best bit of advice you’ve been given in your career?

To never give up. As a journalist, to never give up on a story if you feel there is something to it, and as a person, to never give up on your dreams and your goals. There is not usually a straight road to where you want to go, and you can have fantastic adventures taking the winding road (even if that road is sometimes much longer than you would have hoped it would be).

Always be prepared to work harder and longer than everyone else to get to where you want to be. And a valuable lesson which was shared with me many years ago, is that nobody else is responsible for your career but you. You have to put in the hard graft and take control of the direction, do not wait for somebody else to do that for you – you’ll most likely be left waiting!

And above all, do not carry regrets. Life is scarily short. Not everything works out, draw a line under it, offload the negative energy as best you can and move onto the next thing.

 

Caitriona Perry In America

The new updated edition of Caitriona Perry’s book ‘In America: Tales from Trump Country’ is available in paperback, published by Gill Books, in all good bookshops now.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • Linkedin
  • Pinterest
  • stumbleupon

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *