What Does A News Anchor Do?
As the job title suggests, news anchors are the professionals who anchor or hold a news program together. They are the ones who open up the news and introduce the reporters who are on the field. They see to it that there is continuity to each segment after field reporters have delivered their respective reports.
The most obvious work of news anchors is delivering the news in early morning, evening or late night news programs. They read from teleprompters or note cards when giving news headlines. Although they can make news stories themselves, the text for teleprompters is typically made by other members of the news team. While the job of reading text may seem simple enough, news anchors still need to have presence of mind when doing so. This is because there are cases when what is written on the teleprompter is not correct or times when the equipment will malfunction. During these times, news anchors must be quick to react and make the necessary corrections without getting flustered since news broadcasts are done live.
Moreover, news anchors can be called any time to anchor a program when there are very important news developments that come up. Since these happen quite quickly, there may not be time to prepare texts for them to read. News anchors would then responsible for giving a background of these news events even without texts prepared ahead of time.
News anchors must also conduct interviews with different personalities who have made it to the news. They can ask pertinent questions about a particular issue. They must not be afraid to ask the hard-hitting questions and make the necessary follow ups if they feel that their queries have not been satisfactorily addressed. They can conduct interviews with guests from inside their studios or via phone patch or other electronic means.
When they are not on air, news anchors also do other work. They look at news wires to keep themselves updated on the latest events and suggest stories that can be included in subsequent news programs. If they are slated to do an interview with a resource person, they research the background of their guest and read up on their stand about the issue at hand as well as any related news items about them. They also familiarize themselves with the news items that will be covered for the news program that they will be anchoring.
Although news anchors often do their work from the studio, there are times when they will need to go on location and do the news program from there. They pretty much perform the same tasks but they may have to familiarize themselves more thoroughly with the news reports since teleprompters might not be available in these situations.
News anchors have to remain objective all throughout their report even if they are reporting on emotionally charged situations that the public feels so strongly about. They must keep themselves from injecting their personal opinion about a news item. They must also learn to contain their emotions even in the face of a very sad or anger-provoking story.