Sports Journalism Institute

Helping women and minorities get into newsrooms since 1993

Drop the notebook, listen to people

In a sports world that is so focused on technology and statistics, Wilbon was discouraged at how many young people turn their attention away from people, to the point that many of them do not know how to talk to somebody face-to-face.

Wilbon was determined to remind us that numbers aren’t what make writing stand out, people do. So, if I want to be a successful journalist and make SJI proud, I will have to continue to develop my humanity and listen.

While most of my work comes from broadcasting, I spend a lot of time interviewing my subjects for stories. To me, nothing is more important than making sure that my sources trust me and are comfortable to with talking to me. But listening to Wilbon made me remember just how crucial this is: knowing how to talk to people isn’t just a quirk, it’s necessary to be remembered as a great communicator.

As I continue to grow as a professional, I’ll do everything I can to relax, sit back, and listen to the voices that matter most.

–Steven Hernandez

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