Bob Sellers: ‘I lost my job last Friday’

By Chris Ariens Comment

Bob Sellers, the former CNBC and Fox News anchor who joined Nashville’s WSMV last year, was let go last Friday. In HuffPost, Sellers writes,

I am one of the white collar casualties of a struggling economy and changing industry (television) — and let’s be frank — managers looking for a scapegoat to save their own jobs.

Earlier this year, Sellers wrote about the national media’s lack of coverage of the historic flooding in central Tennessee. A column which, at the time, was praised by his boss:

I sat across the desk from a boss who told me that management had decided to go another direction. This was the same boss that a few months before had given me a glowing personnel review for the work I had done as the 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. anchor at the NBC affiliate in Nashville. The same boss who told me a piece I wrote for the Huffington Post on local flood coverage was “extraordinarily well-written” and reflected well on the station. The one who told me three months ago not to leave to take a job in Washington, D.C. because they were very happy with my work and wanted me here. (That job has since been filled.)

Sellers writes about what millions of Americans have felt the last couple of years, and what happens following a job loss:

Initially you get emails, texts and phone calls. They’re all supportive in describing what “idiots” your employer is — their words, not mine — and how you’ll land on your feet because you’ve got so much talent. But the calls stop. The emails and texts lessen in frequency. And after the anger directed at the injustice of it all goes away, you’re still left with finding your next job, the direction of your future. Will it be an idealistic “falling up” story where a door is opened after a window closes, or a now common tale of middle class Americans losing everything and ending up homeless?

But occasionally you hear something that really does give you hope. One of the people who called was my former colleague at CNBC, Herb Greenberg. (For the record, Herb was in a book I published this year called Forbes Best Business Mistakes: How Today’s Top Business Leaders Turned Missteps into Success.)

“I’ve got two words for you,” he said. “Ray Kroc. He started McDonald’s when he was in his fifties.”

I don’t want to say how old I am because age discrimination exists in the real world, even though in the legal world it’s not allowed. But let’s say I’m closer to Ray Kroc’s age when he started McDonald’s than I am to the age of the participants on “American Idol.”

And as I go to work each day in my new job — finding a job — I know that I am not alone in today’s American workforce. In fact, since my employer technically is exercising a clause in my contract to end my employment, I won’t even show up as an unemployment statistic. But I’m out there.