I Expected To Be Rich: Biggest Culture Shock Revealed By 3 Kenyan TV Stars
The three held a sit-down interview with Pulse Kenya's Muthoni Irungu on Wednesday, January 31 where they discussed how they made it in the media industry
Three female TV personalities Kalondu Musyimi, Claudia Naisabwa, and Azeezah Hashim who are emerging stars in the Kenyan media industry, opened up on how their perceptions and expectations of the media space were shot down when they immersed themselves in the industry itself.
The three held a sit-down interview with Pulse Kenya's Muthoni Irungu on Wednesday, January 31 where they discussed how they made it in the media industry despite starting against odds from a very young age.
For Kalondu, who was the first to respond when asked about the differences between what she hoped for when joining the media and the reality of working in the media, she revealed that she saw the media industry as one of the wealthiest industries on the planet and in Kenya.
From left: Kalondu Musyimi, Azeezah Hashim and Claudia Naisabwa speaking to Muthoni Irungu on January 31, 2023. /PULSE KENYA.YOUTUBE
This is owing to a section of both local and international media stars taking home salaries that can rival the President of Kenya through their crafts ranging from celebrity presenters to news anchors.
"For me, I expected that where I have reached, I expected to be so wealthy. I expected to have a lot of money.
"I knew the industry is filled with a lot of money, I get into the industry and become a star and chop money," she shared.
Azeezah sided with Kalondu, sharing how a mere Google search regarding the wages of media personalities shocked her, particularly upon seeing reports showing TV and radio personalities taking home hundreds of thousands to millions of shillings every month, and comparing it to what she termed as a salary which was far from what she had hoped, in reality.
However, the 'Media Messiah' opined that a media environment facing digital disruption was making companies channel their advertising budgets to alternative methods, which include influencers, a matter which has affected the financial stability of both mainstream and digital native platforms.
"We also need to understand that the dynamics of media have changed in that a lot of advertising and funding from the corporate field, which basically contributes more to the revenue of the company is going to the digital side.
"So we are sharing the cake when we are many of us and there's only so much that can go around," she sympathised with her bosses, though playfully advocating for a pay rise.
Naisabwa on her part took a slightly different view as she attributed her desire to amass experience in media as what kept her going in the industry, despite confessing to undertaking pro bono work.
"For me, it was more of the experience, I wanted to learn because this is also what I'm studying in school. So I went to compare notes and I saw 'okay, is this realistic', because actually, right now, I'm not saying guys don't go to school but you learn more when you are on the ground when you are actually practising," she explained.
"I wanted to meet people, I was so eager...I'm a very good listener so I was so eager to listen to people talking and know how this works. Right now I have experience, I've learnt and I'm still learning."
The former KTN presenter however emphasized the importance of earning from her craft, revealing that she considers her brand especially when negotiating job offers and gigs such as MC, which she does on the sidelines.
She also emphasized compensation for extra tasks that she might be allocated from what was initially agreed upon, adding that "There are some people who love to abuse you or the roles they have allocated you...they want to throw you everywhere. I'll stand on it, I think I'm a very firm person."
"I stand on it and I say 'no, I'm only doing one show. If you want to give me another show, top up the amount'."