4 Reasons Saying 'No' to Your
News Director is Necessary
4 Reasons Saying
'No' to Your
News Director is Necessary
I hate when people tell me no.
“Can you do an interview?” No.
“Can I have tomorrow off?” No.
“Want to go on a date?” No.
Yeah, hearing “No” really sucks.
Since I hate hearing no, I always feel badly saying no, too.
I’ve always been the girl who will say yes, even if it’s going to totally inconvenience me. At my first few jobs, I would work any shift for anyone, even if it meant pulling doubles. I would stay late all the time, work on my days off, and give up vacation time because I thought that’s what I was supposed to do.
I thought that always saying yes would help me advance. In reality, it was hurting me.
Once you become the person who managers and co-workers know will never say “No”, you get abused.
I was always the one to get called in. Always the one who had to stay late. Always the one having to change plans.
I started getting really cranky. I started resenting my coworkers who could easily say “No” to everything. I started getting so stressed out that I didn’t want to go to work anymore.
Finally, it hit me. SAY NO.
I remember the first time I told my boss I couldn’t work on my day off. He was shocked, and, to be honest, so was I. I couldn’t believe I had finally told my boss he’d have to find someone else to inconvenience.
It felt good. It felt even better to actually have a day off!
Once I said no the first time, they quickly found someone else to say yes.
I don’t say no all the time, but I don’t just give up my life to please my bosses anymore. You need to find a balance. So here are four reasons it can be necessary to say no to your news director:
1. Your safety is at stake.
This is the most important one. If you don’t feel safe, GET OUT OF THERE. No story is worth your life.
If you feel uncomfortable in your surroundings, if someone threatens you, if you see lightning—call your boss and tell them what’s going on.
No manager should ever disagree with you about your safety, and if they do, you need to go to HR immediately.
2. You’re being used and abused
If your bosses are taking advantage of you by making you do things they would never ask someone else to do, speak up!
If you’re the one who always gets called in, or the one who always has to stay late—say something. It’s not fair that you should have to pick up the slack for other people.
In some cases, maybe the bosses don’t even realize they’re doing it to you. If you don’t let them know, you’ll just keep getting more and more bitter and resentful.
3. Your mental health is in question
We cover a lot of difficult stories. From homicide to deadly crashes to freak accidents, the stories we cover, and the scene we see, can have a huge impact on us.
If you have been covering some really tough stuff, sometimes you just need a break.
It’s not healthy to see dead bodies every day. It’s not healthy to sit with grieving parents every day. It’s not healthy to go into stressful situations every day. Your mental health is just as important as your physical health, and if you don’t take care of your brain, the rest of your body won’t function either.
If you know that going to another tense, high drama, very emotional scene is going to have you crying at home with a panic attack, you need to tell your boss.
There is no shame in saying, “For my sanity, I just can’t cover this today.“
A lot of stations offer programs where they will find you a therapist to talk with if you need it. Take advantage of those offers and don’t let anyone make you feel uncomfortable about it.
4. It’s your day off.
Days off are paradise.
They are the two days a week where you don’t have to think about work if you don’t want to. When my work phone rings on my day off, I don’t answer it. I let it go to voicemail and see what they have to say.
It is so unfair to ask people to work on their day off, and expect them to be happy about it. You earn your days off. You bust your butt all week, and if you don’t have your days to recharge you’re just hurting yourself and the product.
If it’s your day off, just tell your boss you have plans, and don’t let them guilt you into giving up your day of peace for a day of newsroom chaos.