Flying across the skies to becoming an RJ

I was born in Delhi, raised in Chennai and did my college in Manipal — Journalism and psychology. Since my childhood, I loved playing all kinds of sports. It was my predominant interest. Basketball, squash, cricket- you name it and I would’ve tried my hands on it.

As the years passed, I had this new found love for travelling. I loved it because it gave me the opportunity to meet new people and explore different cultures. I then gathered the courage to do some adventure sports, as well! On one of my birthday’s a friend gifted me a triathlon entry in Hyderabad,which was in 3 months. Although I was unsure in the beginning, I thought I’d give it a shot. I really enjoyed it. So much that I did my next one in Nepal! I’ve also done paragliding and I’m a certified scuba diver.

My love for travel was the reason I took up my first job. I was flying with an airline. I was 19 when I took up my first job and it was really fun. I was on a 6 months sabbatical. It was almost coming to an end and I had 15 days to get back to flying. I decided to take up a small job before that to kill time and make some extra bucks. During in-flight announcements, people told me that I had a distinct and unique voice. I thought I could use my voice to do some radio ads. I then met a man who was conducting a 5 day workshop. I decided to attend the workshop. On completion of the workshop, he told me that there was a job opening for an RJ. Although I was clueless since I hadn’t done this before, I was excited.

I told my parents that I was planning to put down my papers and take up this as a full time job. They sat me down and told me that radio is a very public platform.

Your success & failure, ups & downs are all public. All the praises or the backlash is out in the open.

They were extremely supportive of this, as they have been with any other decision of mine. Since then, there was no looking back. Coming November, I would be completing 6 years as an RJ.

Over the last couple of years, a lot of things have changed. Everything is intertwined with Social media. So there’s a lot of focus on not only radio as a channel, but also the other mediums through which people consume content. For example, if you miss an important show on radio, you can find audio clippings on social media channels. We need to make sure we identify channels in which we can engage with people and give them valuable content. This is a full time job and contrary to what people think, we work 9–10 hours a day and not just during the hours in which the show is on. There’s a lot of ideation that goes into this.

I’m really proud that my show-”Morning No.1" aired on Red FM from 7AM–11AM on weekdays, bagged the bronze award at the New York Festivals: Radio Programming and Promotions Awards. This is the biggest award function for the radio fraternity. There are 30+ countries 30 contesting. We have 100+ radio channels in India and 8 channels in Bangalore alone. The jury is from all the countries. They individually rate all the shows and the aggregate scores are taken for nomination. I was thrilled when I got to know that we bagged the award. We got the Bronze award for two consecutive years and hope to get a Gold next time.

On a professional level, I jibber jabber for 4 hours every week morning on my show. On a personal level, I’m getting back to triathlon training. I think it’s unfair to use lack of time as an excuse and plan on learning to manage my time better, so that I get to do more things I love. Swimming in as many seas & travelling the world is what I see for the future.

Disha Oberoi,
Radio Jockey

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Belong ID: Dishaoberoi