“Planet Money” seeks a co-host/reporter
This job is a chance to help millions of listeners make sense of one of the most confusing moments in our nation’s — and the world’s — history. You’ll have to juggle themes of fairness, well-being, inequality, power, race, nationalism along with efficiency, productivity, innovation and all the other usual economic vocabulary words. Does that energize you?
We’re looking for a new co-host/reporter to join an extremely collaborative and tight-knit team with broad creative freedom to tell stories however we can. Sometimes it’s a character narrative, other times it’s field reporting or an expert interview, or doing things for ourselves, like buying 1,000 barrels of oil or a load of Christmas trees for hapless re-sale on a sidewalk. Humor, antics, empathy, pathos, metaphor, or song or anything else: we deploy whatever tools we need to best explain, engage and entertain. Again, does all of this energize you?
We are open to candidates from non-traditional backgrounds within journalism, business, finance, education or anywhere else but you must be a creative storyteller, team player, critical thinker, kind colleague, curious about economics and able to hit tight deadlines. Please read on for details.
We don’t expect any one candidate will have all of the following, but …
The Ideal Candidate will …
- Be an analytical thinker with a sense of humor and narrative.
- Have a deep understanding of economics, finance and business.
- Or at least have an energetic curiosity about the subject matter ready to truly immerse themselves in it.
- Have a knack for translating complex, nuanced knowledge into simple, clear, entertaining audio for lay listeners.
- More importantly, also WANT to translate that information to lay listeners, not just the investor or business press audience.
- Have an on-air presence that sounds informal, smart, friendly and engaging in a scripted and unscripted setting, even about dull, nerdy topics.
- Be able to hit a deadline.
- Have a nose for character and narrative.
- Be able to report, book, edit, interview, and write scripts for the ear.
- Be well sourced in the fields we cover, or demonstrate ability to source up.
- Be able to write a joke or land a joke when needed, and also know when not to tell one.
- Be energized by the challenges of the job like how to describe a chart on the radio.
Who Should Apply?
We are open to candidates from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences.
- Maybe you’re a radio reporter with tons of co-hosting experience, daily news metabolism, and a PhD in economics and a previous life writing sitcoms — a hard nut to crack we know, but if you exist please apply.
- Maybe you are someone who teaches economics to high school kids and also happens to host a podcast in your spare time with a comedic flare.
- Or maybe you’ve written a ton of articles about the inequalities of getting bank loans or systemic unintended consequences of salary negotiations and have your own YouTube channel you just love working on.
- Or maybe you work(ed) in finance or at the Federal Reserve and your job was to explain complicated processes to outsiders all day long and you want to do it into a microphone now.
- But seriously about deadlines: This is not a job for someone who gets too precious about every detail and let’s perfectionism derail a project. We work as a team, your missed deadline hurts everyone else’s ability to do their best work
- Be deeply committed to diversifying the stories we tell and the voices we book for our show
- Have specific ideas for how to change the show for the better.
NOTE: The ideal candidate does NOT have to love Planet Money as it is.
- In fact, we welcome critical voices to join the team. Tell us what bores you about the show, what turns you away from it. We want that voice — delivered with empathy and kindness — in our edit room.
- Find, pitch, report, book, script, narrate an episode and broadcast radio pieces about every three weeks while also helping others do their episodes.
- Co-host, co-write, peer-edit and otherwise chip in helping on episodes reported by teammates
- Contribute to group edits of other staff-members work.
- Ability to work with producers in a way that facilitates their journalistic and professional development
- Ensuring all journalistic and ethical standards are met and exceeded.
- Write radio versions for NPR broadcast programs
- Write web, social, video and newsletter versions as needed
- Represent NPR, Planet Money in live and online events occasionally and appear on other media to promote Planet Money.
- Mentor and assist in the professional development of junior staff
- Along with co-hosts, editor and staff, set the news agenda for the program.
- Factor in diversity of sourcing and representation of all voices when planning and executing the program
- Ability to evolve with the job as the show continues to grow
Though we especially welcome those with economic or finance backgrounds, formal education is not what is important to us.
This is a senior position, so you should be able to demonstrate:
- Leadership, professionalism, ability to meet a tight deadline over and over, high ethical standards, ability to work closely in a team with kindness, compassion, and empathy.
- Ability to work quickly and efficiently under deadline pressure.
- Ability and willingness to work varied shifts.
- Proven ability to consistently work well with others, demonstrating at all times respect for the diverse constituencies at NPR and within the public radio system.
- Economics expertise
- Experience in audio.
- Experience in long-form, narrative journalism.
- Experience working on deadline and working independently.
- An analytical mind.
- Excellent writing chops.
- Ability and willingness to relocate. NPR may choose to transfer employees to other geographic locations. Severance provisions of the AFTRA collective bargaining agreement will apply should you choose not to accept a transfer.
HOW TO APPLY
- Please submit a resume along with a cover letter. We’d love some links to previous audio hosting or reporting, if you have it, if not, explanatory journalism of any kind will do.
- This job is about making complex topics clear and entertaining. So show us how you do it. Please explain something complicated in audio in 90 seconds or less. Choose any topic you feel you know well and link to the audio file in your cover letter. No need for a fancy mix, phone voice memo recording is OK, as is any other way you want to approach it.
To apply, go here.