My Mentor: Charlotte Hawkins on Eamonn Holmes

'He really made me think and told me not to always keep to the script'
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The Independent Online

In our job, everybody is always ready to give you lots of advice about various things, such as what jacket to wear and how to have your hair, but Eamonn is a fantastic source of really good advice. He knows the business inside out and upside down and knows what he's talking about.

When I started at Sky last year they told me to ring Eamonn and introduce myself. I was a little bit fearful because some people you see on television look ever so friendly but they turn out to be real tyrants. Eamonn was welcoming right from the start and is an incredibly generous presenter. I thought maybe I would seem like a little mouse next to him because he is a big personality, but he'd say things to my producer like: "We haven't heard much from Charlotte this morning, why don't we get her to do the next bit?"

I've really been able to learn from the way he does things, and he's quite happy to share what he thinks makes things work. I think the danger with being a newsreader is just reading the news instead of actually telling people the news, and making sure it sounds natural and conversational. He really made me think about how I was saying things and told me not to always stick to the script. Eamonn loves what he does for a living and that really rubs off on everyone else, even though we get up at 3am and aren't always feeling our best. He just makes the most of it and he's helped me in all sorts of ways. I remember I had to do a speech at an awards ceremony and I remember thinking I had to think about something newsy, current and something serious and he just laughed at me and said "No you don't, all you need is a joke", people are there to have a good time, and he came up with a joke for me, at his own expense, and everyone laughed. He judged it exactly right. He is coming to my wedding in August and has even helped me decide on my honeymoon destination.

Charlotte Hawkins is on Sky News' Sunrise with Eamonn Holmes from 6am weekdays