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For anyone with newsroom 'leader' responsibility

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by budcrew08, Jul 3, 2007.

  1. budcrew08

    budcrew08 Active Member

    I'm helping to train a new person in our department, and I'm starting to act like the old bastard that would give you shit because he's been the business for 30 years. I've only been in this professionally for 3 years! Has anybody else felt this way acting in a "leadership" or "teaching" role in your newsroom with new staff members?

    P.S. I'm not a "boss," meaning I don't have boss responsiblities, but I do have to help train the new person.
     
  2. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    If you acting like an old bastard already, you're publisher material, son. Congrats.
     
  3. Appgrad05

    Appgrad05 Active Member

    The good news is that your editors think enough of you to let you train someone else.

    The bad news is that I am guessing the two of you might have the same job title. Which means you coming down on him is going to be seen as totally uncool and will likely lead to hostility.
     
  4. budcrew08

    budcrew08 Active Member

    Yeah I guess that I'm allowed to do it is a good sign.
    We do have the same job title. I'm not really coming down on her with the quality of her work so much as I feel like I'm acting like a dick because we have to make a deadline and she, being new, hasn't really got the concept of that totally yet. She says that I'm not being mean or a jerk, she knows we have a job to do.
     
  5. mike311gd

    mike311gd Active Member

    I had to do this recently. Just be patient with the new person. He of she will develop because of you, not in spite of you. If you sound like you're coming down hard, follow whatever you said with a story relating your previous experiences. It always worked well for me.
     
  6. leo1

    leo1 Active Member

    here's some advice: stop acting like that annoying old bastard. if you know you're doing it, just stop.
     
  7. jfs1000

    jfs1000 Member

    We got a new raw staff member, and also added a couple of interns. for my first 7 years I was the baby in the newsroom. Now, I mentor these younglings and give advice. It's quite shocking. It wasn't gradual, kind of like happened in a couple of weeks time. I then suddenly realized I was old.
     
  8. forever_town

    forever_town Active Member

    I've taken on quite a bit of that at my shop. As the managing editor of the paper, I have to train anyone who comes in as an intern or a full-timer. The last two semesters, I've been primarily corresponding via e-mail with the interns because their class schedules don't lend themselves to coming to the newsroom.

    I've noticed that with a couple of interns who are genuine newbies to journalism, I've been much quicker to send them e-mails with detailed feedback about what they need to do with their stories than I was in the past. I'm not known for raising my voice -- except to my publisher -- but I'll definitely let them know what deficiencies I notice in their work.

    I'll admit I've been spoiled rotten because some of the interns I've gotten in the past few semesters are either already experienced and just happen to need clips or they're newbies who have a strong sixth sense for journalism. The idea that I'm actually working with a "project" is actually somewhat envigorating.
     
  9. budcrew08

    budcrew08 Active Member

    The person I'm working with is not a total noob, I believe she worked at a weekly paper at college and she interned at another daily, IIRC.
    Like I've said in previous posts, the problem was that she fusses with little things that we don't really have the time to fuss over on a tight deadline. I just feel like a jerk trying to tell her to move it along and quit sweating the small stuff.


    I really appreciate the help from everyone who answered.
     
  10. forever_town

    forever_town Active Member

    You're not being a jerk doing that. It's part of the learning experience of working in this business.

    I'm still learning what things to let go and what things to fuss about and I'm supposed to be "the boss."
     
  11. TyWebb

    TyWebb Well-Known Member

    Not an SE now, but have been in position of training and leadership. I would say try a little more patience, but not much. You really have to have tough skin to be in this business, and not just for comments from readers. She needs to get used to being constantly corrected and critiqued. It is going to happen a lot.

    Another though: just sit her down and explain to her what your first post said to us. Tell her you aren't trying to be an asshole but a deadline is a deadline. It has to be met.
     
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