For the third year in a row, CareerCast.com has rated newspaper reporter at the top of its “10 Worst Jobs of the Year” list.
Newspaper reporter has come in at the number one spot — even above logger — as the worst job of 2016. CareerCast listed the median income for the job at $37,200 with a growth outlook of -9 percent.
It’s grim to be listed as the worst job of the year. Especially for me — someone who has just started his career. I’m looking at student loan payments, along with the other costs of life in a field with a declining future.
But I think at the absolute worst, newspaper reporter is only the third worst job of the year. Two jobs take the top spots easily. The first is having no job. Even though CareerCast places a dark shadow on my career, I am working. I can pay my bills. I have a roof over my head. I’m not hungry.
And the job I believe deserves the top spot on CareerCast’s list is a job that you hate. No matter how good the pay or the opportunity for growth, I can’t imagine having to walk in everyday and do a job that I can’t stand.
Storytelling is what I love. And for me, that means more than how much money I make or how quickly my field is growing — or shrinking in this case.
Along with income and outlook, CareerCast also rates jobs based on two other criteria: environment and stress. According to CareerCast, environment looks at the amount of hours worked each week, as well as physical and emotional factors, while stress considers deadlines, travel and interaction with the public.
I think these factors play a more important role in newspaper reporter’s spot at the top than its outlook and income. Newspaper reporters do work a lot of hours, and often can’t fall into a set schedule as event times and availability for interviews are always changing.
We also interact with the public on a daily basis and are held responsible for the content we produce by the public — as we should be of course. Travel is frequent and we often have stressful deadlines.
And while these things are largely responsible for the job’s rating as “Worst Job of 2016” — at least in my opinion — they don’t bother me.
I knew that deadlines, travel, stressing over deadlines and weird hours came with the job when I signed up. While it can be a hassle, it’s also part of what I love about the job.
So for me, I like to think we do the job that many people don’t want to do because we love it. It isn’t the worst job. It is simply a job that takes a certain kind of person to work it. And it’s an important job.
So while I’m not happy that my colleagues and I have once again earned the top spot, part of me takes pride in it. Folks need the news, and I help bring it to them. As long as I can keep doing that, I don’t care where we fall on some ranking.
— Chance Hoener is a staff writer for the Morning Sun. He can be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @ReporterChance.