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Essential Qualities of a Good Journalist

Do you get inspired by famous journalists and the righteous persona the represent? What are those qualities that make them stand out of the crowd? From courage to honesty, integrity to determination, there are some essential qualities that a professional journalist possesses. If you are aspiring to make a career in journalism, you should have these qualities.

A Way with Words

How do you distinguish between an average news story and an enthralling news piece? Effective writing skills can make all the difference. A writer should know how to play with words and should be able to produce an error-free, grammatically correct and concise article with factual information that would pique the interest of the audience.

Thorough Knowledge

For being a good journalist, you need to be aware of the current events. Read a wide range of both print and digital medium of news sources to stay updated on the happening events. Also, you need to have some background knowledge before you go out to cover a story and write on it. Your ability to research to find out the important details of a story is quite helpful.

Investigative Skills

A journalist relies on facts and evidence, not on emotions while working on a story. An ideal journalist should be observant and possess strong analytical skills to assess a situation if there is something more to it. Whether it is about confirming the credibility of sources or assessing an incident, a journalist should know how to weight a situation critically. Sound judgment to verify the information before drafting the story is equally significant.

Effective Communication Skills

Like any other field, effective communication skills are essential for an ideal journalist. If you know your way with people, you can understand them then you can extract relevant information for a story. An ideal journalist should also know how to take control of a situation if the interview goes wrong. Journalists should be proficient in English and be well-versed to file a story that would attract the target audience.

Professionalism and Confidence

Even if you are a fresher and in your internship phase, you should consider yourself a professional. What professionalism means in the journalism field is meeting deadlines, ready to take up work before regular working hours and have the courage to accept criticism from the editors. Also, journalists should reflect confidence in order to succeed. However, you should always be eager to learn from your limitations and enhance your skills.

Persistence and Discipline

The profession of journalism requires hard work and persistence. Sometimes you might be chasing a story for months to get a lead and hit the newspapers. During such times, an ideal journalist should not give up following on a story and must remain disciplined. The ultimate motive of any journalist should be to find the truth and seek justice in all matters even if he or she has received recognition for their efforts.

Ethics are Important Too

With so much of competition to move ahead in the race, sometimes journalists abandon their ethics for money and fame. A good journalist should always behave ethically and never follow illegal measures even if it helps in uncovering the secrets behind a story. Accuracy and honest should be more important while writing a new piece.

From print to electronic, from newspapers to magazines, the profession of journalism requires some important personality traits and significant skills to succeed. If you are planning to pursue a career in journalism, you should question yourself if you have these essential skills.

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