UCLA Anderson School of Management – MBA
It might be surprising to hear that Renee Eng, anchor and producer for Time Warner Cable News, didn’t go to school for broadcast journalism. In fact, she’s an MBA who did her undergraduate work in economics. But while she’s clearly got a head for finance and business, Renee also had an interest in broadcasting that led her to an internship at the station. Years later, when she spur-of-the-moment applied for an opening at CitiCABLE (her previous employer), Renee’s old boss remembered her — and her awesome work ethic.
Renee’s an example of living your passion; quick to underscore that life’s too short to not take risks and go for what you want. “There were definitely points in the past where I wondered if I was being silly or was too old; too foolish to be chasing my dreams,” Renee acknowledges. “… [but] if it’s truly something you want, it’s never too late to go for it.”
… The regret of not taking the risk will weigh more heavily on you than trying and failing.
What do your responsibilities involve on a daily basis?
I'm responsible for producing a business show that features a different company in each episode. The production of this involves reaching out to the company, setting up the interviews and filming date, writing the interview questions, conducting the interviews, filming B-roll with a production crew, writing the script after and editing the show so it can air.
What is your favorite part of your job?
I love interviewing others and hearing their stories. In my case, I get to find out how people started their companies and learn more about their professional background and life stories. It’s really inspiring! It’s also a great fit, since I would love to start my own business one day.
What challenges keep you awake at night?
I’m always thinking about how to make each show better than the last. I'm constantly trying to think of ways to improve the show and keep viewers engaged.
Does work/life balance ever pose an issue for you? If so, what’s your suggested no-fail tactic for balancing the two?
Yes, definitely! A no-fail tactic to help me to create balance is to exercise. Even if I’m just running for 30 minutes or going to a yoga or barre class, it’s an instant way for me to de-stress and create balance. I also keep a set of workout clothes in my car, so that way I never have an excuse not to go!
Getting a quick manicure or treating myself to something nice also works, but I truly believe you have to take care of your body physically first. Whether it’s exercising, sleeping or eating right, in order to help better manage work/life balance and stress, you have to take care of yourself.
What are some of the rules you live your life by?
1 / Work with integrity. It will help you end each day with the satisfaction that you did your best work and put your best foot forward.
2 / Always treat others with kindness. You never know when it will come back to you.
3 / Nurture your relationships. As I get older, I realize just how important friends and family are for support, encouragement and overall quality of life. Professional relationships also are important to maintain, because you never know when it could lead to a job opportunity or the chance to learn about a new industry.
What is your advice for a woman who wants to have a job like yours?
You’ll need thick skin, passion and dedication. Being in media, you may not have the right "look" for one station, but on the flip side, you could be a perfect fit for another. The industry can be subjective, so you must have a thick skin to put it all in perspective and not take it personally.
Passion and dedication help, too! Entry-level jobs in our field tend to be low-paying with long hours and you may need to work a second job to help make ends meet (which I did for several years).
What advice would you have for a 21-year-old version of yourself?
I would tell my 21-year-old self not to worry so much about the future! I spent lots of nights wondering if I would get the job I wanted or if I would get the chance to accomplish everything I wanted to do. My mind had so many worries; the list went on and on. But the reality of it is: it all works out in the end — even if it takes you a little longer than you thought to land your dream job or buy that amazing house, things will work out eventually. Don't forget to enjoy your life in the meantime.
What is your advice to all I Want Her Job readers?
You’re never too old to follow your dreams or your passion. There were definitely points in the past where I wondered if I was being silly or was too old; too foolish to be chasing my dreams. I thought maybe I should just go for something more stable, settle down, etc. But at the end of the day, I think the regret of not taking the risk will weigh more heavily on you than trying and failing. I knew I had to keep going for it, even it meant working two jobs and going to school at the same time. If it’s truly something you want, it’s never too late to go for it.