How to land a job as a television presenter

Sonny Ngatai TV presenter

Pathways to becoming a television presenter

Have you dreamed of becoming a TV presenter but aren’t sure how to get there? We spoke to Sonny Ngatai – TV presenter on Hahana, who shared his story.

Although Sonny snapped up a job with Hahana, this wasn’t always his intention. In fact, he started studying medicine before he realised presenting was the career for him! He thanks his school achievements for getting him to where he is today, especially learning and speaking Te Reo, which he is extremely passionate about.

Sonny emphasises that while there are no specific educational requirements to becoming a TV presenter, there are courses which give you skills and confidence and put you in the best position for getting your first job.

Completing these television, film, video or journalism courses also allow you to make contacts and get experience in TV presenting. One popular training faculty is the New Zealand Broadcasting School.

Realities of the job

1. It's competitive

Unfortunately, chances of getting a job as a TV presenter are poor due to high competition for a small number of jobs.  Sonny shares his top tips for making yourself stand out in such a competitive industry.

2. It's hard work

It’s a common misconception that a TV presenter’s role is as easy as sitting down on the couch and interviewing someone. Sonny soon learned that you need to understand the person you are interviewing more than they understand themselves! 

3. You have to learn lines

You have lots of lines, so you need a good memory to recall scripts and facts. Even once you have learnt these lines perfectly, they could change right before you go live! This means you need to have the ability to improvise when necessary.

Inspiration from other presenters and broadcasters

Inspiring stories from those currently in the industry give us motivation to make the first step towards our dream career.

Head over to Oompher to see more videos from presenters and broadcasters such as Mike Hosking and Susan Wood, who share their experiences of how they got started in their presenting careers.

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