5 in 5! with Britt Hysen, Editor-in-Chief of MiLLENNiAL Magazine
MiLLENNiAL is a lifestyle and culture magazine highlighting those shaping the world we experience. The magazine considers its mission to curate the "best-of" international Millennial culture, providing readers with actionable "take-aways" to encourage individuals to improve their lives and that of their communities. The site continuously delivers diverse content on a wide range of topics including celebrity, CEO, and activist interviews, international news, and socially conscious content
Britt Hysen is the Editor-in-Chief of MiLLENNiAL and has been labeled The Voice of Generation Y by her journalist peers for covering compelling stories about Millennials and their interests.
1. How did you get started in the industry? How can someone who is interested in your work get started?
In 2010, I saw an opportunity to start a web series highlighting Millennials in Los Angeles making a living doing what they loved. I would interview various young professionals on-camera and create short inspirational videos depicting a day in their life. This quickly turned into a journalism career where I produced news segments for a variety of online publications and organizations. I then realized that my beat as a reporter focused on the successes of the Millennial generation and I wanted to create a platform that strictly showcased the innate talents and beautiful qualities of the people who represent us best. Thus, Millennial magazine was born.
My advice to those wanting to get involved in media is to start interviewing people. Learn to share the stories of those you respect. This will make your work much more credible because you are offering the perspective of a direct source. Then use these stories as pieces for your portfolio and offer to contribute to publications you admire. The more your work is published, the better off you will be in creating further opportunities for yourself. Internships with media organizations
are also a wonderful way of building your portfolio because you will be given specific assignments that allow you to grow as a writer. It may even lead to the possibility of being published.
If you are interested in video production, start shooting your life and those that surround you (with permission of course). We live in an era of infinite resources and tools. Your phone now functions as your camera and computer. Start using it if you don't have the funds to buy a professional camera. Storytelling is everything today. If you can tell a good story, you can go a long way.
2. What's the future of your industry or job?
The future of media is digital content. We are transitioning from print to digital publications. And what makes digital publications unique is the turnover rate. Gone are the days of receiving content once a month. Now we ingest it by the second. This is getting increasingly hard for breaking news sites, and retractions are occurring now more than ever. The other challenge is creating original content that no other outlet has published. A whole new level of creative storytelling is going to be required.
3. What do you look for when you hire an intern or entry-level candidate?
Quality of work is the number one thing I look for. This means the ability to fluidly deliver a story or execute beautiful photography. I also want to see a unique style. This includes everything from the tone of the writing or subject matter to interesting use of lighting and composition in photos. The most important thing to remember when applying to MiLLENNiAL is that we do require everyone to have a portfolio. We need to SEE your talents, not just read about it in your resume.
4. What is one thing an intern can do to make a favorable impression?
Communication is key! A lot of our work is done in the virtual space and this requires excellent communication skills whether in the form of writing (emails, stories, texts, etc.) or getting on the phone to cut through a lot of back and forth. If you can't communicate, I don't suggest media.
5. Can you share a positive intern story and/or an intern horror story? (no names needed!)
I've been using Internships.com
since 2012 and have been very proud of the people that have come to me. I'm especially proud of a particular Albania[n] girl living in New York who came to me with only her passion for poetry and a willingness to grow as a writer. She left an accomplished journalist with 12+ stories to include in her portfolio and went on to write for some respected music publications. It was amazing to see her growth over the time we spent together and how well she took direction. The biggest reward is seeing someone blossom in front of my eyes and knowing that I helped pave that initial path to success for them.