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How To Fail An Interview, Work A 5-year plan and Other Career Guidance from Bloomberg Anchor Angie Lau

In the Top 25 issue of Women of Influence Magazine, we spoke with Angie Lau—anchor, First up with Angie Lau, Bloomberg’s flagship Asia news show—for the Exit Interview.

Here’s the part of that conversation you didn’t see in the magazine, including what she has to say about planning your career and not messing up your job interview.



I think that having a 5-year-plan is…exactly what anyone who wants to turn a job into a career needs. It helps focus you. It tells you exactly what you need to do, the steps you need to take, the weaknesses you need to overcome, the gaps you need to fill, the skills you need to acquire, in order to get to the next level. It is the difference between feeling frustrated and hopeless when things don’t work out for you and overcoming hurdles quickly by focusing on what you need to do.

One thing I want the young women in my industry to know is…you can get exactly what you want by being yourself.

When I was first starting in my career, I wish someone had told me…that being good at your job was not enough. It’s not. Knowing how to navigate office land mines and difficult personalities are skills that are integral not only to survival, but to success. Sometimes though, you’ll realize you need to leave to grow. And that’s perfectly ok, in fact, it can be perfectly right. Other times, that’s the easy way out. Fight for what you want and need. Find advocates internally in the company. You may just find a champion.

Something I want to accomplish before I die is…Write a book.

One of my first jobs was…I was a bus-girl for a local restaurant and cleared tables. I had no idea what I was doing. I don’t think I learned any actual skills on the job, but what I did learn was how to juggle my responsibilities: homework, school, friends, family, money, life. And I learned the beginnings of financial responsibility and independence.

My first journalism job was…as summer reporter for CFRB 1010 radio in Toronto. That led to a weekend reporting position during college.

I’m happiest when…I’m with friends/family and we are simply enjoying each other and laughing. Usually food and alcohol is involved. That ups the happy factor for sure.

The worst thing anyone can do during a job interview is…be unprepared and not know anything beyond the home page or Wikipedia write-up about the company they’re there for. Believe me, I’ve seen it too many times. It is cringe-worthy.

At the office, my workspace would best be described as…colourful and effective, though still a little more cluttered than I’d like.

The worst thing I have done during a job interview was…get lost on my way there, so I was late.

My workday ends when…I go to sleep.

I try to go to bed at…7:30 p.m. because I leave for work at 4:30 a.m. and if I don’t get at least 7 hours of sleep, the whole week is a physical challenge.

2 words I hope describe me 25 years from now are…powerful and kind.

My phone is always…ON!

I wish I were better at…everything!

I am excellent at…making people feel comfortable and relaxed.

Having real influence means…serving as inspiration for other people’s brilliant ideas.

When I was a kid, I was given this advice: no one is going to take care of your dreams more than you.

If I had a personal tag line, a slogan, it would be…Do everything with conviction and purpose. It’s the only way to achieve excellence. But the one I have lived by the longest, and which has generated so many returns in my career is this: whenever you feel like you’re not learning anymore, it’s time to leave.
5 years from now, I will be…grateful and happy and challenged.

A leader is someone who…is true to the cause, and not just interested in the title.

Angie Lau was nominated for “Best Anchor” at the 2014 Asian TV Awards. Follow her on twitter @AngieTVLau!