Perhaps one of the most difficult things to do in these days of short attention span is to keep your viewers glued to their television screens to watch the news. Over time, as an uninvited guest into the houses of many, you have to create a loving relationship with the thousands who make time to watch you on TV.
A unique relationship with viewers and listeners it has been for The Multimedia Group's Israel Laryea, who has made it pleasing to connect with him on radio and TV. He has become the cool dude who loves you like a parent, relates to you like a brother, and indulges you in a unique relationship!
Affectionately referred to as Izzy by many of his colleagues, he described his close to two decades journey in the media as one which thrived on consistency.
"I think it has been consistency…being consistent with what I do," he told Lexis Bill, host of Personality Profile on Joy FM about the persistence with his pursuit of excellence in his field of endeavour.
The CNN local stringer shared his no holds barred adventurous ride to the top with the listeners.
Before Israel Laryea’s introduction to journalism, he was an account clerk with Mobile Water, a sachet water distribution company, but aside from his designated role, "he did virtually everything".
"I was doing the accounting, I was actually distribution manager, procurement manager. If there were any machines in the factory that broke, I fixed them…I was picking the boss’ kids from school as well’, he said.
Ushering at Uncle Ebo's "Rejected" play at the National Theatre
The voice-over artiste experienced his baptism of humility when he had to personally pack, transport, offload and single-handedly distribute the bags of sachet water.
He, however, found fulfilment in undertaking the low-ranking role as it connected him with people of different social classes. This was to help him in dealing with people.
Though Israel Laryea is one of the best news anchors on the continent, he was turned away in his first attempt when he applied for the job of a newscaster at the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC).
The young man whose best subject during his GCE O'Level days was English believes GBC did not even take a look at his letter – an indication of how far he has come.
He persevered and applied to TV3 when the Malaysia-owned station started operations, but he was "bounced" again!
When duty calls...the night Obama was returned to the White House
"I could not even go past the receptionist," he recounted.
With a spirit which was unwilling to quit, Mr Izzy tried once again with TV3 and fortunately for him, pronto! he landed the job!
At long last, the former Mobile Water multitasker had landed a job with TV3 but not as a newscaster. He had to settle for the post of a production assistant.
Though what Mr Laryea really wanted to do, was to be in front of the cameras, he took his behind-the-scenes work so seriously and worked diligently.
He his efforts were rewarded because before he switched to the newsroom after six months on the job, he had mastered the production role.
Motivation from icons such as renowned filmmaker, Nat Lomo-Mainoo, producer of one time hit series Inspector Bediako, and his Malaysian boss at TV3 led the son of a military man to successfully audition for the role of a newscaster.
The 'Living Word producer, Mr Lomo-Mainoo who was working with Mr Laryea as his Production Assistant had so much confidence in him, he delegated the filming of some segments of the show to him.
Izzy explaining something to Lexis
Izzy was as a result responsible for filming the intros and outros of the program, which brought him into close contact with Pastor Mensa Otabil. He also filmed other productions, including an episode of "In-Person" with Rocky Dawuni, who recently was nominated for a Grammy.
After a five-year stint with TV3, he moved to Ghana’s leading media establishment, The Multimedia Group just after a brief chat with the late Komla Dumor.
At an Obama rally as he campaigned for re-election in 2012
At Multimedia, he managed to pick up a second job with his former employers. Israel Laryea worked as radio news anchor with Joy FM and at the same time anchored news on TV3.
The B.A Marketing degree holder later parted ways with TV3 to work permanently with The Multimedia Group.
The Joy News and Joy FM’s newscaster hopes to become a pilot one day.
Watch the interview below: