Introducing our new monthly feature, ‘Meet the journo’!
Meet the faces behind the names and get to know the journalists, editors and key influencers at some of Yorkshire leading publications. To kick off our feature this month, Kayley Worsley, Yorkshire editor at TheBusinessDesk.com Yorkshire talks to us about her career as a journalist, future goals, and advice on pitching your business.
Name: Kayley Worsley
Publication: The Business Desk (Yorkshire)
How did your career in journalism unfold?
It was always an ambition of mine to become a journalist and so I went to the University of Sheffield, where I studied for a degree in Journalism; which included the NCTJ qualification and shorthand. I loved everything about the course, as it gave me the academic side of the trade including media law, while also having my own news patch to cover in the city.
While at university, I took up a series of work placements to gain valuable experience and over the past 11 years I have worked in the media industry in a variety of roles. Before I took up my position as Yorkshire editor at The Business Desk I worked for Leeds Bradford Airport as PR and public affairs manager and before that, I worked as a reporter with the Barnsley Chronicle and Newark Advertiser.
Who inspires you the most?
There are so many people to be honest, especially working with and reporting on so many successful businesses across Yorkshire. In my job I feel privileged to meet people from such a broad spectrum of industries and in lots of roles. In their own way, I would say each inspire me because of the determination they genuinely have to succeed and raise the profile of Yorkshire for the benefit of our economy. It would be unfair to pick one out.
What kind of stories particularly interest you?
Working at The Business Desk, I’m interested in business stories from across the Yorkshire and Humber region. We cover a whole range of sectors, from manufacturing and property to legal and professional. We tend to find that deals stories are particularly well received by our readership, so we are always on the lookout for this type of news, as are stories about people.
We have good relationships with contacts across the business landscape in Yorkshire and the Humber, so we are always being sent stories celebrating business in Yorkshire; which is brilliant. I also quite traditional in that I like to be out on the ‘patch’ as often as I can to source stories and meet people.
At The Business Desk we are at the forefront of breaking news sent direct to our readers’ email inboxes. For that reason we are always looking out for an exclusive (though any journalist will tell you that!). Whether that’s a major deal, a new appointment or just a general newsworthy business story about growth.
What’s the best story you’ve ever received?
That’s a tough one! The region generates so much news and there’s loads of fantastic stories that come through; it is certainly true that no two days in my job are the same.
It’s hard to reflect so much on the ‘best’ but I particularly like stories about property and investment in the region. A recent story that caught my attention was the purchase of the iconic Temple Mill building in Leeds by CEG. The building was sold to the property developer for £1 just before it went to auction. The site had been mooted as one Burberry were interested in developing but that fell through. It’ll be interesting to see how CEG look to redevelop the site and what creative and innovative ideas they come up with for the iconic building.
What are some of your goals for the future?
My vision is to continue to cover the region as broadly as we can, making sure that we are picking up news from across the whole of Yorkshire and the Humber and not just focus on one city.
I also want to make sure that we continue to reach new audiences and host a variety of events and discussions to engage people from across Yorkshire. Relevant topics such as the development of the region, prosperity of businesses and insights from business leaders who represent Yorkshire are all areas I’d like to focus on.
What are some common myths or any challenges about a career in journalism?
I’d love to say, “long hours” is a myth, but it’s not the case!
We’re in a very privileged position as journalists in that we’re invited to a lot of exciting events and meet a real variety of interesting people. So, I’d say a challenge of the job is splitting your time and trying to juggle multiple engagements. Unfortunately, we can’t be in two places at one time, so being able to allocate time effectively is a must!
What do you believe makes a great story?
For me, a great story is something that’s fresh and newsworthy and relevant to what is going on in the region. I always look for a good level of detail in any news story – I want to know the value of a deal, how much profit does this business make, what’s the turnover and so on. Having these facts allows me to give a more detailed story, which is ultimately what our readers want.
Obviously being the Yorkshire editor, everything I cover needs to have a Yorkshire link to it and has the potential to be a great story for us.
I think commentary from key business people from across the region on more general news themes are particularly interesting. Whether it’s commentary on the budget or political landscape such as Brexit, it’s interesting to hear the insights of local business leaders and how they perceive these national issues impacting on the Yorkshire and Humber region.
What kind of publications do you enjoy reading?
I read across pretty much all types of news, from the regional through to the national news as well as keeping an eye on trade media for sector specific stories that break. We live in a world of 24-hour news so I’m constantly keeping abreast of breaking stories both relevant to Yorkshire but also elsewhere. Twitter is increasingly being used as a news outlet so it’s important that I keep up to date on there as nowadays that can often be where a story first breaks.
How do you cope with the stress of tight deadlines?
As a journalist I think it comes with the territory. I like to have a firm deadline and for me it’s very much a case of getting my head down and getting on with it, I’d even say I enjoy the thrill of a deadline!
When working to a tight deadline, it’s important to know who the right people to contact are when you’re under pressure to get something out. If you have a good network and relationships with people who can get you information quickly and accurately it certainly helps to alleviate some of intensity of a tight deadline.
Outside of work, what do you like to do in your spare time?
I’m a keen runner and I love to take my Springer-doodle, Charlie, out for walks in the amazing countryside that Yorkshire has to offer. I absolutely love travel and planning my next adventure is always at the top of my ‘to-do’ list in my spare time. I love to go skiing and I used to do a lot of scuba diving but I’ve not had much time to do that recently.
As a journalist, I’ve been lucky to be invited to a lot of weird and wonderful events and activities over my career, I once went fencing to review the sport and I ended up taking it up for two years! I’m an active person so anything that gets me out and about – I’m all ears!
Finally, what piece of advice would you give to people wanting to pitch their business to you?
Be aware of the type of news we cover, we have quite clear editorial guidelines so understand those and make sure your news is relevant and newsworthy if you’re submitting it. If we’ve already covered the story or the news is a few days old, we won’t be able to cover it so that’s worth bearing in mind. Stick to deadlines, as journalists we’re time poor so understanding this and sending things in a timely and efficient way helps to make our lives easier!
Always send an image with any news you’re submitting, and the devil is in the detail – we look for that level of granularity that gives a news story real depth and insight as that is what our readers want to know.
A huge thanks to Kayley for getting involved in our first ever Meet the journo feature! Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for the next one!