Name: Abby Huntsman
Job Title and Description: Co-host of FOX & Friends Weekend (Saturdays and Sundays 6-10AM/ET), FOX News Channel Anchor
College Name/Major: University of Pennsylvania, Communications and Political Science
Instagram/Twitter Handle: @huntsmanabby
What does your current job entail? Is there such a thing as a typical day?
AH: The best and worst part of my job is that there is never a “typical” day. I love it because I’m never bored and constantly learning new things - It keeps me on my toes. But it’s tough to stay on top of the news that is always changing, thanks to social media. I can’t tell you how many times we produce a 4-hour show and halfway through news breaks or President Trump tweets something, and then everything changes. I would probably be very bored doing anything else in life. If you love uncertainty and a challenge every time you walk into work, this is your calling! You also have to love working crazy hours. Our show starts at 6 a.m., so my alarm goes off at 4 a.m. I realize I love my job because I still jump out of bed excited to do the show, even at 4 a.m.!
What is the best part of your job?
AH: The best part of my job is the people I get to work with and our audience. FOX & Friends is very much a family show. It’s like we’re sitting in our living room just hanging out with each other and millions are right there with us chiming in on twitter or sending us their own thoughts on social media that we constantly incorporate into the show. At a young age, I loved interviewing people. I always had so many questions (I drove my parents crazy!) so being able to talk to interesting people every day is a dream job for me.
What was your first entry-level job in your field and how did you get it?
AH: My first job was my freshman year of college. I was an intern for ABC4 in Salt Lake City, UT (where I’m from). I worked for their morning show, Good Things Utah. I would wash dishes for their food segments and open mail. Tasks that don’t sound fun at all, but I remember loving every minute of it because I was enamored with TV. I realized during that internship that I wanted to work in news, whether it was producing or on air I didn’t care. The next summer I was an intern for Good Morning America and then, World News. I was able to work for Diane Sawyer who remains my role model. Internships are the best way to figure out if you really something.
What words of wisdom do you find most valuable?
AH: My dad always says, “You know you’re doing something right when people are criticizing you.” It’s a vicious world out there, especially if you chose to have a more public role, the only way to survive it is to believe in yourself and to have a thick skin. My former boss also taught me that as an interviewer and a host, my job is to get the best answers out of the guests. It’s not about me. Sometimes we can get too caught up in wanting to look and sound our best on TV, we forget that our job isn’t about ourselves, it’s about giving a great product to the audience. I try to remember that whenever I interview people. They are the interesting ones, not me!
What is one mistake you made along the way and what did you learn from it?
AH: Oh, I still make mistakes every single show. And I’m sure I will for many years to come. The worst mistake I made (and still do) was being too hard on myself. We are often our worst critics - and for no good reason. I was lucky to start my career so young on TV, but that also meant I was surrounded by the very best. I would compare myself and try to be like others around me, and then I realized I could only be MY very best. I’m not a lawyer, I’m not a war correspondent, I’m not a medical expert, and that’s ok. Once I started to own just being me, I felt this new wave of confidence and I think it’s made me much better at doing my job. Believe in yourself, listen to good advice around you, and don’t be afraid to fail a few times along the way (because you will!).
What has been the most surreal moment of your career thus far?
AH: Probably being able to interview my dad on national tv for the first time. He is someone I have looked up to my whole life for so many reasons. In that moment I was still his little girl, but I could see in his eyes how proud he was. I will never forget that feeling. No matter how old you get you still want your parents to be proud of what you do. I’m sure that will never change.
What do you look for when considering hiring someone?
AH: I look for natural confidence and I look for someone who is genuine and humble. It’s tough to find the combination of confident and humble, but when someone has that it’s a game changer.
What advice would you give to a 20-something with similar aspirations?
AH: I would say go for it! Believe in yourself, because the sky is the limit. TV is all about luck, hard work, and having the ability to connect with your audience. You won’t be perfect on day one, or in year 10, so enjoy the ride without being so hard on yourself. Don’t be afraid to ask for advice from people you look up to or for help getting an internship. Getting in the door is often the hardest part, but once you prove yourself and show people you’re motivated and willing to work hard, anything is possible.
What's the one thing that's stood out to you the most in a resume?
AH: A resume is a requirement for most jobs, but I always say meeting someone face to face is what will stand out more than anything else. Focus on the human interaction. You want them walking away thinking, "we can’t let them go"!