Tiana Lee On How Determination Led Her To Becoming An Associate Producer

 
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At some point in your life you’ve looked at a successful person and wished you had the life and opportunities he or she seems to enjoy. But too often, we forget that success does not happen overnight; there is no such thing as overnight success. The most successful people have had times when they seriously contemplated giving up – but never did. They had moments when all they could do was pray and hope that their efforts were not in vain and, when all else failed, they knew all they could do was patiently wait to see the fruit of their labor.

Tiana Lee may not be successful by her own standards but she definitely knows the keys relevant to achieving the life she desires. She should probably thank her mother for blessing her with what her mother calls the 3 P’s: Prayer, Patience and Persistence.

Find out more about Tiana’s upbringing, her current position as an associate producer, and how she’s using her mother’s wise advice to make her dreams of hosting entertainment shows a reality. 

Defining Moments

Tiana grew up with both parents and she doesn't have a story where she can say that she had many hardships growing up. She was fortunate enough to say she didn’t have any struggles during her childhood and if there was a struggle she didn’t notice it. Tiana can honestly say she was blessed to have had the childhood that she did. Her mom and dad were never the type of parents to say that their children must pursue a certain career when they grew up in order to be successful. They were pretty supportive of anything that Tiana and her siblings wanted to do. She remembers a time when she told her mom in elementary school that she wanted to be a chef. Her mom responded, “Okay, you’ll be a great chef!” and, her mom would take her to the library and they would check out all types of cookbooks. She would go home and make things like funnel cakes, and other pastries, and her dad would be the taste tester. It made Tiana realize just how supportive her parents were of anything her, her brother, and sister wanted to do in life. They instilled within them that as long as they put their minds to it they could be anybody. Her dad taught them how to remain humble and how to always help people. She thinks that’s why she has such a good heart today.

Dealing With Insecurities 

She can remember the first insecurity she has ever had. Tiana has a birthmark on her face. It’s near her nose. For a long time she hated it. But as she got older she thinks it either faded away or she just stopped noticing it but that was the first time she realized she had an insecurity – but it’s not something that bothers her anymore. The most serious insecurity she has struggled with is being afraid of what people would think about her opinion on things. Tiana would often think, “Oh, they’re not going to like if I have this to say.” She realized that if you want to be real with a person you just have to be straightforward and let them know your thoughts. So she stopped holding her tongue around high school, and she actually got an opposite reaction than what she expected. People appreciated what she had to say and they cared about her opinion. That’s when she started being more open and honest with people and stopped caring if they agreed with her perspective on things. She still deals with the insecurity today, especially working in the news industry. 

It’s important to let people know how you feel or they’re just going to assume or not even care to ask you about it.

The insecurity is not as big as it was in the past but it’s still something she works on.

Associate Producer for Houston's KPRC2

Tiana is big on school and working towards her career, so when she became a senior she started going crazy, thinking, “I need to find a job now”—even though she was still in school. She felt the need to have a job immediately. Tiana was applying for jobs in October of her senior year. 

She wrote cover letter after cover letter but she never heard anything back. She was applying to huge networks that required her to move to another state. She was never really into local news so she never had the desire of applying to local new stations and for a while in college, Tiana told herself that she wasn't going to move back to Houston. Spring semester, she was still applying for positions. Her desire at that time was to work for South by Southwest, after interning with them for two years. But, she didn’t necessarily want to move to Austin. So one day, close to graduation, she started searching for job openings at Houston local new stations and she saw that KPRC was hiring. KPRC was really the only news station that she grew up watching so she emailed the news director with her resume—and of course a cover letter—and that same day she received a call. Tiana had an interview scheduled that week and the following Monday she got the call that they wanted to hire her. She finds it crazy how much she stressed all those months about finding a job and it ended up playing out so smoothly.

An associate producer is a good position to start your career if you ultimately want to be in front of the camera—and that’s something she is aiming towards personally. Tiana mostly wants to work in the entertainment industry; particularly hosting radio or television, she loves both. People often tell her that this a good position to learn how to write on your own and to learn the ins and outs of broadcasting before you go on-air.  A lot of people tell her that they started as an associate producer or as a producer before they got in front of the camera, she feels good to know that she is on the right path.

Advice To A Young Woman

Sometimes you may feel anxiety, fear or discouraged but you can’t be afraid to step into what you were created and placed on this earth to do. You have to go after what you have a passion for.

If you don’t wake up in the morning loving what you do, then that tells you something. You have to go for your dreams, but remember success doesn't happen overnight. Her mom always reminds her family of the three essential P’s you need to have in your life: Prayer, Patience, and Persistence. Once you instill those values within you, everything else will fall into place. God will connect the dots for you. Everything that you’re going through right now, whether good or bad, will all make sense in the future. You have to be crazy enough to believe it—and speak it into existence—and she’d like to say that she's crazy.

 

To learn more about Tiana, check out her Instagram: @itsme_tlee and contact us if you would like to be featured!