Mike McRoberts has only ever attended one formal job interview and thinks he may have once had a resume back when he was starting his media career 35 years ago, maybe.
It’s not the kind of story we hear a lot in the recruitment sector, but Mike is a perfect example that the way to the top of your chosen career can be found in many ways.
Mike will be the host of this year’s RCSA New Zealand Industry Awards to be held at a gala event at the Hilton Auckland on July 5.
“I applied for a cadetship with Radio New Zealand at the end of 1983,” the popular News Anchor at TV3 explained of his first and only formal interview. “It was quite a gruelling process and took about four or five hours all up.
“I remember that because I had a massive parking bill to pay at the end of it. The interview also included a voice test and a writing test for commercials text. A month later I found out I was one of two cadets RNZ took on, the other one was Simon Barnett.”
Mike wasn’t put off attending interviews after this first one; he simply didn’t need to.
“I’ve actually only worked for three companies in 35 years,” he explained. “Radio NZ, TVNZ and TV3. I was shoulder tapped for the TV roles so my only interview was way back as a 17 year old applying for the RNZ cadetship. I don’t think I’ve even had a CV.
“Growing up I had actually thought of numerous jobs I wanted to do from teaching to architecture and had pretty much settled on studying law when I did a writing course that took me to a radio station.
“I was instantly hooked on the newsroom, it seemed so chaotic but also so vital. From then I knew I wanted to be a journalist.”
And while he may have enjoyed steady employment, Mike certainly has some interesting work war stories – quite literally – to tell.
“I’ve certainly been in some pretty weird situations in my role as a journalist, particularly covering wars and natural disasters,” Mike said. “One that comes to mind was being detained by Hezbollah during the war in Lebanon in 2006. We were only held for a few hours but I was pretty pleased to get out there.”
While Mike has not had a great deal to do with the recruitment sector for his own career, he says he has enormous respect for those who choose to – or accidentally – end up in a recruitment career.
“What a fantastic and important role the recruitment industry plays,” he said. “You are literally changing people’s lives. Very few occupations have the chance to be so instrumental in others futures so enjoy it.”
Asked how he would respond to either of his children choosing a career in recruitment, Mike didn’t hesitate.
“Both of my kids have demonstrated a strong interest in the happiness and welfare of others,” he explained. “I’d be really happy if that was the career they chose to pursue.”
Nominations for the awards close April 23. The selection criteria and award application can be found here.
To chat to Mike and secure your tickets for the gala awards nights to be held at the Hilton Auckland on July 5, book here.