It is astonishing how much the sector has changed in that time. The job titles themselves are indicative of these changes. While we still recruit MDs, Editors, Sales Directors and so on, we are now as likely to be working on roles like Head of Product Roadmap or Chief Scientist. As business models keep changing, so too do the attributes of the individuals who can add value.
This article first appeared in Press Gazette
Last month, I wrote about the positive reasons for changing jobs at the moment. But not everyone gets to choose; redundancies and closures are happening across every sector of the media, and, as a result, more and more people are being forced to go freelance. With this in mind, I asked a few editors what they thought were the golden rules – the media recruiting tips – of establishing yourself when new to the market. It seems to boil down to the following freelance tips:
We are all media companies now. And we need media skills to match.
The phenomenal pace of change in internet and mobile technology means that retailers, banks and other consumer-facing businesses are no longer just competing with their high street rivals; they are competing for consumer attention with anyone who has a presence in the digital space. To be effective, they are having to think like media businesses.
In an era when many consumers are as comfortable making purchases online as they are on the high street, the benefits of a strong digital offering are obvious. But the changing face of communications means that the online space is also highly competitive. Users are fussy about their experience and it is costly to get it wrong. The best sites demand the best people, and they are increasingly sought after.
In a tough trading environment, the difference between success and failure is marginal. Let’s assume that 5% makes all the difference. This means publishers squeezing 5% more out of their budgets; sales directors improving their profitable revenues by 5%; and editors getting 5% extra creativity out of a budget reduced by 5%. The same principle applies for the events and research sectors – indeed, for any business.
But how does a company achieve this? Well, it requires a senior team which is flexible, dedicated, and leads by example. And that means hiring the right people for publishing in a recession and, where necessary, replacing the wrong ones.