Why I Left Daystar and Other Answers About My Work Life

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Have you ever had to leave something or someone you loved?

I’ve been gone from Daystar Television Network for 7 months now and I’ve often wanted to write more in depth about it so here it is! This post is an answer to some of the most common questions I’m asked about my work-life. I hope it not only answers those questions, but encourages someone who may be in the midst of a transition themselves. Let’s get to it!

 

How did you get the producer job at Daystar?

In May 2010, I was on a friend’s couch in Nashville (where I was living at the time) and out of nowhere, I heard God tell me “move back to Dallas and apply for a job at Daystar.”

“What, Jesus?”

I was totally fine with the move back to Dallas part, but working in television was never even a thought or desire for me.

The closest I’d ever come to wanting to work in television was my childhood career dream of becoming an actress, but I grew out of that dream by the time I was 12 and realized I didn’t like the spotlight and would prefer to just be “normal.”

With little understanding of a very clear directive, I got on my computer and went to Daystar’s website. I looked at the positions available and applied for one I thought I could figure out how to do, “Assistant Producer.” I literally didn’t even meet the minimum requirements for the position.

 

In the meantime, I worked on moving back to Dallas and I waited…

…and waited

…annnnd waited.

 

It would be 8 months before I heard anything back from Daystar.

 

I got an unexpected call in January 2011 asking if I was still interested in the position I’d applied for.

“Umm, what position did I apply for again?” I asked.

“Assistant Producer,” the stranger on the other end of the phone responded.

“Oh!! Yes! Yes, I’m still interested!”

“Great! We’d like to interview you. Can you come in on Monday?”

“Yes!”

I went in for an interview with what felt like The Great Sanhedrin. I hadn’t had an interview with this many people at once since my radio days in college; and I didn’t quite impress that bunch! (A story for another day)

I answered their questions as best I could and presented my bootleg portfolio (which included zero television work).

“Where do you see yourself going here? What would you like to do?” one person asked.

“I like taking things from concept to completion, so I’d love to help start a show from scratch.”

To this day, I have no idea where that vision came from. It wasn’t something I’d really contemplated, but in that moment, that was my answer.

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What was your time at Daystar like?

A week after that interview I began what would be a 3-month long trial. At the end of the trial I was offered a position as a Production Assistant and Audience Coordinator because I wasn’t qualified enough for Assistant Producer.

By my 1 year anniversary, I was promoted to Assistant Producer and by my 3rd year, I’d skipped a position and was promoted to Lead Producer of the network’s flagship program.
This means I would be working with the Founders and President of the network on the program that has been around the longest!

 

“I am not ready for this!”

I literally every day, even up until the end of my time at Daystar, felt like I was unqualified and ill-equipped for the job.

“They need and deserve someone who knows what they’re doing!”

Another new program was added to my duties and I found myself as the lead producer of a second live show that needed to be created from scratch!

 

The dream I’d spoken in my preliminary interview was being realized just 4 years later and I found myself responsible for the flagship program AND a new show that needed a name, set, format, open, graphics package…literally everything needed to be created from scratch.

I honestly never felt confident or completely comfortable in the role of Lead Producer, but they trusted me with it and I am forever grateful.

As my responsibilities grew, I was asked to be in more meetings, I got to travel multiple times around and out of the country. I even got to turn 30 twice thanks to a work trip that took me to Australia for almost 2 weeks!

During my time there, I was also afforded some opportunities to share on camera as well! I couldn’t have asked for a more enriching work experience and on top of that, I LOVED my co-workers. How rare is that? We actually liked each other!

It was like working with a big family and yes, sometimes we had our issues like family, but we always worked it out.

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Why did you leave Daystar?

With all of the beauty, favor, experiences, and opportunities I was given, many want to know why I left  a job I loved with people I love after six years.

Leaving Daystar was a two year-long journey for me. I first felt the nudge to move on in 2015 but I didn’t know what that meant so I started praying and journaling about it.

My main prayer throughout those two years was

“Lord, when it’s time, help me to leave well.”

They had taken such good care of me as an employee and friend and I was so grateful and wanted to display that gratitude even in my exit.

I wanted them to know that they were not the reason I was leaving. It was bigger than them and bigger than my own desires even.

There are two primary reasons why I left:

Reason #2: My Family

I’d seen the demand, and lived it personally, that a career in television can put on your life. You can become consumed with keeping up with all the responsibilities and duties, particularly once you make it to the Lead Producer level that I’d reached.

 

I literally would dream about the show and even when I wasn’t at work, my thoughts were often consumed with making sure I’d communicated any necessary information to everyone who needed to know. There’s an added pressure when you produce live shows. You don’t get re-dos.

 

I struggled with systems and my job needed lots of them. I was unmarried, wasn’t dating and had no kids and still I often struggled to keep things moving as smoothly as they could’ve. I could only imagine what that balancing act would be like once I got married and started having children. I knew I didn’t want to maintain that pace of life once I started a family.

 

During this 2-year period, I was also praying about Dex—we were just friends at the time, but something was stirring in me about our marriage.

Reason #1: God Said So

I know it’s whack to “blame” something on God, but just as clear as He’d told me to apply, I heard Him tell me it was time to wrap things up.

There were many days I’d prayed and asked Him if I could stay longer. I never heard an answer that I recognized, but looking back now, I can see how 2015-2017 was a two-year long “yes.”

 

Over the course of those 2 years, I had countless ugly cry fests on my 30-minute drive to work. It felt like the end to me even though I had yet to share it with anyone. I knew at some point, it was coming.

My last day at Daystar (March 1st) came just 4 days before our wedding day (March 5th).

 

And the crazy thing is, after 2 years of crying like it was my last day, I got to the end and it felt like a beautiful celebration and loving send off!

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How has life been since you left?

For the most part I have been extremely gracious for the flexibility and freedom I have gained since leaving. It has been the biggest blessing to be able to start marriage feeling like we had a 6-month long honeymoon. We’ve had more time together than the average new couple which has helped tremendously with figuring out our flow and learning each other. I am extremely grateful for that gift.

 

However, there are days, including today, when I miss the beauty of working daily with a team that I love. I’m a high extrovert so going from working with over 300 employees to now working for myself, and sometimes only having a conversation with one person (my husband) in a day, is a huge jump for me socially.

 

Another challenge is having to hold myself accountable during the day because really no one else is. I don’t have co-workers who need me to get something done in order for them to do their jobs. Workflow is a lot different.

What are you doing now?

I’m still working in media and I have a few clients who I help with everything from producing to branding to social campaigns…pretty much anything media related they tells me they need, I get it done! I’m also working on getting a couple businesses going so that’s an adventure (and a lot to do) too!

What have you learned?

  • I have learned how great I had it at Daystar.
  • I have learned I am definitely a team player and prefer working with teams.
  • I have learned I am capable of doing more than I believe.
  • I have learned I have a high standard of excellence (which also makes working for myself harder
  • because I’m never quite satisfied or happy with my work. Sigh, Jesus, help!)
  • I have learned I don’t have to have the full picture to obey.
  • I have learned God always knows best.
  • I have learned our steps are absolutely ordered by the Lord.

Will you ever go back to Daystar?

I know to never say “never,” because honestly, I don’t know. If Jesus tells me to and it worked well for my family, it’s possible!

Until I hear differently regarding my work, I will continue to work for myself while building our home-life. I’m content and believing for continued growth. I’m grateful and I’m open to whatever God says “go” to next!

Questions For You!

Have you ever had to leave a place you loved?

What was that like for you?

How did you see God at work in the midst of leaving a “good” thing?


 

Links to Checkout!

Daystar Annual Report 2016Screen Shot 2017-10-04 at 12.02.27 PM

Learn more about Daystar & also see a bit about what my last year producing the live program was like! Click here or the image.

 

Daystar.com

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There is a lot of great programming on Daystar, you can watch on tv or online anytime, there’s also a ton of stuff On Demand that you can watch anytime you’d like! Click here or the image.

 

On Camera

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Here’s a chance to check out some of the times when my behind-the-scenes job became a little more public and I was able to share on air. Click here or the image.

 

1 Comment
  • Emonne
    October 4, 2017

    KDR! Sure do miss seeing you at work everyday! Love this post & all the great memories. If anyone maximized the Daystar producer experience it’s you! Thank you for being a great friend, leader and lover of people!

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