Paula Rizzo is an Emmy-award winning television producer, best-selling author, speaker and a media trainer and strategist. She coaches authors, experts, and entrepreneurs to perform better on camera and produce their own videos. She’s personally media trained executives from Fortune 500 companies and privately-owned organizations as well. A seasoned speaker, Paula’s presented at Women Influencing and Impacting Toyota, Chief, MA Conference for Women, HOW Design Live, New York Women in Communications, National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO), and many others.
She’s the founder of ListProducer.com and the author of Listful Thinking: Using Lists to be More Productive, Highly Successful and Less Stressed and Listful Living: A List-Making Journey to a Less Stressed You. Paula is also a LinkedIn Learning Instructor of several courses including, “Organizing Your Remote Office for Maximum Productivity,” and “The Power of Lists to Get Things Done.”
A media veteran for nearly 20 years, she also worked in local news in New York City as a producer for WCBS, WPIX, and WLNY. As a former senior health producer for Fox News Channel for more than a decade, she produced segments with a range of top experts, including JJ Virgin, Jillian Michaels, and Deepak Chopra.
Paula has been featured in major media outlets like FoxNews.com, Business Insider, and The Daily News. She’s a contributor to MindBodyGreen.com, Entrepreneur.com, and Thrive Global. Go to PaulaRizzo.com for more.
Paula, can you start off by telling us about yourself and why you chose the media profession?
As both a journalist and an author it has been really exciting to be able to work in media. I really love video and broadcasting because it’s quick, it’s fast, it’s to the point, and it’s very conversational. When I was in college, I thought that I would be a magazine editor or a newspaper writer, but when I had to take a broadcast journalism class I knew right away that it was a perfect fit for me.
I’ve always wanted to write a book and be an author, but I never thought that I would write two books about list-making. I’m also working on a novel at the moment. I’m excited to create more content and to put things out into the world that will help people live a better life, whether it’s to be more entertained, healthier, more productive, or whatever it is… I find it to be a great privilege to be able to give that to an audience.
Can you tell us what drives you to be successful as a producer, and entrepreneur?
I’ve always been a very curious person and I know that’s why I was drawn to the news business. In news you become an expert in a lot of different fields all at once, and I have always loved that part of this profession. I also really love telling people things that they don’t already know.
The same goes for my work as a media trainer. I’m able to help people in a field that is not necessarily innate to them. To be able to help them look and sound better on video is exciting to me.
I’m also a lifelong learner. Being an entrepreneur means that you’re constantly learning something new, or at least you should be if you’re going to be successful.
Tell us about your role and your vision of your company.
As a producer and journalist I’m always trying to help people to get the best part of their story out into the world. Now that I work for myself I’m able to help many more experts do that. I’m able to media train them and get them ready for mainstream media interviews and for producing their own videos.
In addition, I’m also an author, writer, and I produce a show called Inside Scoop every week where I have conversations about productivity, writing books, or media and video. Video is going to become even more important over the next decade and the people who can really harness its power will be the most successful.
What’s the one or two accomplishments that you’re proud of?
Winning an Emmy Award and becoming a published author.
What advice do you have for other up-and-coming young entrepreneurs?
Do your homework! Don’t just jump in and think you’ll quit your job and start a new business tomorrow. That very rarely works. I would suggest doing some type of internship in the business that you want to start. Or make it a side-hustle and do that while you’re also making a steady paycheck so that you’re able to see if it’s something that really is exciting enough for you to want to quit your job to do it full-time.
Are you active on social media professionally? If so, what platforms work best for engaging your followers?
It really depends where your audience is. That’s what I tell all my media training clients. If your clients and potential clients are not using Twitter, then what’s the point of using it yourself? For me, I really love to engage with people on LinkedIn. That seems to be my tribe.
What is the major difference between being a Producer and an Entrepreneur? Any comparison?
Journalists are actually very well-suited to be entrepreneurs and that’s because we’re used to taking ownership of a story from beginning to end. That’s very similar to what it’s like to work with clients. Also, a journalist’s natural creativity and curiosity help for sure.
Who was your biggest influencer?
I’ve always been a huge fan of Oprah Winfrey. She said “You become what you believe” and I have always taken that to heart.
What is the most challenging part of your work as a Founder of your business?
Setting boundaries and keeping them. Also aligning yourself with the right people and companies.
What do you have your sights set on next?
I’m working on a novel and I’m really excited to get it out into the world and hopefully made into a movie or TV series at some point.
What is a day in your life like?
AI set up my day very intentionally based on my own personal productivity style, which is what I write about in my book Listful Living. I’m not a morning person and I don’t try to be! So I start my day off very slowly and work my way up to working. I wake up without an alarm clock, I drink tea, I do yoga, and I read the newspaper to see what’s going on in the world. Then I get started working around 11:30, and I’m typically done with my day around 4:00 or 5:00. I always leave time for lunch because otherwise I get cranky and I know that about myself. And I’m also very kind to myself and I do not schedule any more than three calls (video or otherwise) in one day, if I can help it. This is my form of self-care and how I take care of myself to make sure I don’t burn out.
Do you have any hobbies?
I love going to the beach, reading, doing yoga, and making charcuterie boards.
What makes you smile?
Puppies and kittens.
What are you never without?
Hot tea! It’s my favorite.
What scares you?
I’ve always been terrified of getting a paper cut in my eye. I have no idea where this comes from but it has plagued me my entire life.
What’s your favorite vacation spot?
Paris and Rome.