In the ninth of our UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 series with Women in Football we sit down Betty Glover, radio and TV sports reporter for the BBC!
Tell us about yourself, what is your current role and what roles have you done previously?
Hey! I’m Betty and I’m a sports reporter at the BBC on radio and TV. My day-to-day job is on Radio 1 and 1xtra presenting the sport for Newsbeat. I’m also a football reporter for Football Focus on BBC 1, Final Score and 5live sport – so I spend most of my Saturday’s very cold at different grounds around the country doing live reports. And this summer I’m working as a pitch side reporter for The Women’s Euros and The Hundred, as well as working on The Commonwealth Games.
I previously worked as a Broadcast Journalist for 5live, reading and writing the sports bulletins… and before that, World Service as a broadcast assistant, cutting clips and helping to write scripts. I started off and found my love for radio at BBC Radio Solent.
What do you do in your current role?
For Radio 1 Newsbeat my job is to react to whatever the story of the day is… that mostly involves interviewing players, coaches, and fans. I love football and I’m very passionate about women’s sport so if you listen, you’ll hear a lot of that! The idea is to make sport appeal to Radio 1’s everyday listeners who might not love sport, so my job is to make it accessible and interesting. The best bit for me is getting to interview players and athletes and just having fun with it – my favourite interview recently was with Chelsea’s Mason Mount and Erin Cuthbert ahead of their FA Cup finals.
“Normal” isn’t a thing in sport so what does an “average” week look like for you?
I’m usually all over the place! I can get sent anywhere for Radio 1, depending on where the story is… I work four days a week there – and then either spend my weekday off doing an interview for Football Focus or prepping for whatever match I’m getting sent to on Saturday (during the football season). I work for either Final Score or 5live on the weekend, usually covering games in the Championship.
How did you end up where you are right now? When did you know you wanted to work in sport?
I’ve always wanted to work in sport from such a young age, because it was the only thing I really cared about! If I wasn’t playing it, I wanted to be talking about it. I was going to become a PE teacher, but I was the BIGGEST fan of Gabby Logan and I used to sit there watching any program she was on, so I thought I’d give journalism a go. I studied Broadcast Journalism at Bournemouth University, managed to get on the Kick-off scheme at BBC Sport whilst I was there – which is a 3-month work experience opportunity during the summer – and through that got some contacts at BBC Radio Solent, where I started working part-time around university. When I graduated, I found it really hard to get full-time work anywhere, so I ended up freelancing at Heart FM in Milton Keynes and various other local radio stations… I counted once and I did 78 different job interviews over a 6-month period – didn’t get one! I then finally got some work at BBC Sport in Manchester and the rest is history!
What is your number one focus when it comes to your work?
To be myself (which sounds stupid, but it is so easy to copy other people’s styles when you’re on air)
Can you tell us about a time you failed and what you learned from it?
I went for a job as a broadcast assistant at 5live sport once, and I absolutely bombed the board. I was gutted because I really wanted the job and I had been working in the role as a freelancer – but I tried to wing the interview and I didn’t do enough prep for it. I learnt from that – always do your research!!
What excites you most about UEFA Women’s EURO 2022?
Women, at the top of their game, being taken seriously! Women’s football leading news coverage, record attendances and people just enjoying it for what it is! It’s been a long time coming and I absolutely LOVE watching young kids attend these matches… they probably think it’s the best thing in the world.
If you could change one thing about your Industry, what would you change?
A bigger commitment to women’s sport. The BBC does do this and is trying, but I think even more can be done. The coverage of the women’s Euros and the WSL is great, but I’d love to see more being done to highlight other women’s sport – netball, rugby, hockey etc. I think it’s so important to get women’s sport on terrestrial TV so that it inspires the younger generation.
Sport is a hectic industry, what do you do to switch off?
I don’t…. If you have any tips let me know! I try and walk my dog a lot and go to the gym… but I am ALWAYS on my emails or on social media (I’m also notoriously bad at replying to emails too, which doesn’t make sense)
What is the one piece of advice you would give to someone wanting to work in the sports industry?
Ask people for advice and talk to people in the industry! It’s the best way to learn and get tips. Also, everyone says this – but just say yes to everything. Even if it’s not something you particularly want to do in the long term, because you never know what you’ll take from it, whether it’s contacts or skills.
How to follow Betty Glover…
Thanks for reading our chat with Betty Glover! If you want to read more from our Industry Insider series, you can do so by clicking here.