Linda Powell Explains How to Find Your Dream Outdoor Job
John E. Phillips 06.01.13
Author’s Note: Linda Powell is Director of Media Relations for Mossberg (www.mossberg.com) and handles the company’s advertising for print, TV and online.
Linda Powell works to promote not only the Mossberg brand as Director of Media Relations, but also the hunting and shooting sports while she continues taking the outdoor media on hunting trips all over the world. Powell has found her dream job, and you can too.
Mossberg could have hired almost anyone in the outdoors for her job. When we asked Powell why Mossberg chose her, she laughed and said, “That’s probably a question to ask Mossberg. Possibly, it’s because I have established respect and a good reputation in the outdoor industry. I’m also knowledgeable about the gun industry, and I’ve had experience working with outdoor media. I think they looked for who was the best fit for the company, not whether they wanted to hire a man or a woman. From the minute I walked in the door at Mossberg, this position felt like the right fit for me.”
Linda often asks people within Mossberg to go on hunts and be on TV for her–yet another way we see the servant’s spirit in Powell. “Many people at Mossberg deserve the opportunity to share the outdoor experience with our media friends. We have engineers, people who work out on the floor and employees who are extremely knowledgeable, who have good people skills and are as passionate about the outdoors as I am. I’ve had so many opportunities to travel, to hunt and to be with the greatest people in the world, I’m glad when I can share those opportunities with other employees at Mossberg. For instance, if we have a person at Mossberg who’s designed and developed a new firearm, I think he should be the person who goes on one of these trips to introduce that firearm to the outdoor media and the world.”
“My job at Mossberg is really customer service, but my customer is the media. Even though I work for Mossberg, my job is to make sure that writers, TV producers, radio people and/or TV personalities get what they need to do their jobs. I look for magazines that go to the specific consumer base where our new products are targeted. I go on all these hunts, but I’m always the host. My job is to take care of the logistics, do the planning and find the outfitter who can help the writers and TV producers get what they need. I handle all the travel arrangements and deal with the airlines, hotels and car rentals. I order all the guns and ammunition for the hunt and all the promotional items. I also try to pick writers I feel will help us the most. I go in a day early to rent vehicles and meet the writers at the airport. I handle getting the licenses and any incidentals the journalists may want.
“Each person has individual needs, and my job is to know what each writer needs to accomplish his or her goals. Then, I coordinate with the outfitters and the guides and let them know what each writer really needs to do. Some writers concentrate more on the photography than actually taking an animal. I may be sitting in the back of a truck trying to spot game for the writer to photograph that day or the next day. Many people say that handling all those logistics and taking care of writers doesn’t sound like much fun. I quickly reply that I think I have more fun than anyone on the trip. Hopefully, I get to see the writers and the TV personalities that I host become successful. Often, I see them become more successful than they’ve expected. As I’ve said before, my job is customer service. My number one responsibility is to make sure the media that Mossberg hosts will succeed.”
Powell tries to spend one full day on each hunt with each writer or TV personality that she takes on a hunt. She wants to know them as individuals and as friends. Powell always takes that extra step that consistently leads to success. In all businesses, people do business with people they know and like. In the outdoor industry, Powell has an army of individuals who know, like and respect her.
When Powell was asked about the future, she smiled and quietly said, “I never see myself leaving the outdoor industry. I know that some day I won’t be able to keep up with the pace. When that day comes, I want to be able to give back to the outdoor industry. I’d like to work with conservation organizations. I currently serve on the board of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and am passionate about its mission and efforts to restore elk to many places in the elk’s original home range. I would love to be able to help them more as a volunteer, at some point.
“My advice for young people who want to do what I’ve done is to follow your heart and your passion.” So many people are afraid to take advantage of opportunities when they arrive. I was a city girl. I never had been around guns and hunting. But when the opportunity came along to learn and grow, I walked through that door. My life changed dramatically. It became so much richer and more fulfilling. Even though what I do may not be exactly what you want to do, that door may open several more doors that will give you your dream job like the one I’ve found.”