1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

More MG News

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Moderator1, Mar 23, 2009.

  1. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    Not sure what any of this means but I'm sure someone can translate:

    Dear Fellow Employees,

    Today Media General is announcing a major change to its organizational structure. Effective July 1, 2009, we are shifting from a structure that is organized by division to a structure that is organized by market. All properties in a given market will report to a Market Leader regardless of platform. The new structure will greatly accelerate our Web First strategy, speed decision making across the enterprise and provide an even closer connection to our customers. We’re already managing ourselves this way, with growing success, in our Tampa market.

    Our main strength comes from the growth markets that we serve. It’s more important than ever that we be laser focused on serving our local markets better than anyone else. With change happening so rapidly in our business, we must be positioned to create and serve new market opportunities as quickly as we can. We also must ensure that all of our resources are deployed as effectively as possible in support of our digital strategy.

    Our current structure was developed for a different age. It has served us well as a company that for many years was a newspaper publisher, that later acquired television stations, and that had an early recognition of the potential of the Internet. Our Division Presidents have done a first-class job leading our businesses as individual platforms and in working across divisions in a multimedia approach.

    Graham Woodlief, who will turn 65 on his next birthday, plans to pursue his long-standing plans to retire and will do so on July 1 of this year. Graham has contributed significantly to the growth and success of Media General in his 47 years with the company. We will recognize all of Graham’s contributions more fully as his retirement draws closer and, in the meantime, we will look forward to his help with our transition to the new market structure. Jim Zimmerman and Kirk Read will have key leadership roles in the new structure, as detailed below.

    The market-based approach is a natural extension of our Mission. It will more closely connect us to our customers and, just as importantly, to our “non-customers” as we seek new audiences that advertisers want to reach. This closer connection to customers will help us deliver new products and services faster and more effectively.

    As part of the new structure, we are creating the new position of Group Vice President, Growth and Performance, which will report to me and will elevate our focus on interactive media opportunities and operational excellence initiatives. Jim Woodward has been named to this new position. Jim has 25 years of experience as a business leader in the company. From his roles as internal auditor, assistant controller at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, to manager of external reporting in the Accounting Department, to various roles in HR including his current position as Vice President, Human Resources, Jim has developed a strong breadth and depth of understanding of Media General’s business. He knows first hand what it takes to drive growth and performance in an accelerated fashion.

    Reporting to Jim will be Kirk Read as President, Digital Media. Kirk will continue to lead our increasingly effective team of interactive media professionals who are taking us into new online products and services, developing important Internet partnerships and acquiring new interactive advertising services that are diversifying our online revenue streams. All of our markets, as they work to create even more value from our local media web sites, will benefit from the leadership of Kirk and his team.

    Also reporting to Jim will be Dale Lachniet, President, Newspaper Production and Distribution, and Ardell Hill, President, Broadcast Services.

    Bob MacPherson will succeed Jim as Vice President, Corporate Human Resources. Bob is currently President, Community Newspapers Group.

    The following executives have been named President, Market Leader, and they will report to Reid Ashe, chief operating officer:

    Virginia/Tennessee – Jim Zimmerman
    Florida – John Schueler
    Mid-South (SC/Ga./Ala./Miss.) – John Cottingham
    North Carolina – Jim Conschafter
    Ohio/Rhode Island – Rick Rogala

    Biographical information about our leaders is available in a separate document.

    Tomorrow, March 24, at 10 a.m., Eastern Time, our Market Leaders will each host a webcast for employees in their respective markets. You will find the link to your market on the home page of the Meganet. You will be able to email questions during the webcast and instructions for doing so will be provided when you log on to the webcast. The exception is Florida, where employee meetings will be held instead of a webcast.

    Reporting to our Market Leaders will be leaders for each of our localities. Local leaders will be responsible for all of the properties within their market. Organization charts are available on the Meganet. Our Market Leaders will also begin a series of employee meetings at our properties where they will more fully share their vision for their respective markets.

    As part of our new structure, our corporate departments will provide more direct services to our markets, especially the Finance and Human Resources functions, and also will drive our MGi2 and Marketing processes. All markets will benefit from deploying our corporate expertise in this fashion. Our Finance functions will be reorganized into a centralized unit starting April 1, 2009. More information on that change will be provided in the coming weeks.

    I am confident that our new market-based structure will strengthen and speed our capacity to react to the changes in our business, especially the rapid move into the digital world. Tightly focusing on our markets will accelerate our ability to innovate and meet new customer needs. Our new strength and agility will pave the way to a stronger future where we can all be successful. A video report from me on this topic also is available on the home page of the Meganet.

    Please join me in congratulating and supporting our new leaders, and keep in mind that our future success depends on the enthusiasm, engagement and innovation of each one of us.
  2. times38

    times38 Member

    I don't speak businessese, but this seems like a way to get rid of Florida to me.
  3. JKelly12

    JKelly12 Member

    Well, I don't know how much it's related to this, but our MG shop just found out we're all basically laid off in two weeks...but more than welcome to "apply" for a slightly smaller number of restructured jobs. I'm feeling free to assume a big salary cut comes with that.
  4. Angola!

    Angola! Guest

    So, your paper is closing?
  5. JKelly12

    JKelly12 Member

    No, they're just consolidating operations and eliminating some positions in the process. I'm an SE who now has to choose between 1.) competing with the guys in my department for a sports writer job, or 2.) going back to news side and covering school boards and all that lovely stuff. Door #3 would be the unemployment line. Not an appealing option in the bunch.
    Our managing editor and opinion page editor, both of whom have been at our paper since the mid-1980s, will have to duke it out for one available job. I suppose one of them could take a sizable demotion and become a reporter, but how much of an insult would that be??
  6. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    Apparently, the Lynchburg SE is now in charge of a group of writers in that region including Danville, Eden and one other (Reidsville or whatever it is called)? Desk guys from Danville go to Lynchburg? Someone straighten that stuff out for me.
  7. Wonderlic

    Wonderlic Member

    Everyone in the Danville and Rockingham newsrooms were effectively laid off and have to reapply for the positions that remain in the restructured newsroom. Seven or eight positions are being eliminated outright and all of the pagination responsibilities are being transferred to a regional universal copy desk in Lynchburg. Four new positions are being created in Lynchburg to handle the load, making eight paginators total to work on seven newspapers (two dailies). The Reidsville and Eden, N.C., papers are dropping from 5 to 2 days a week and losing the AP wire.

    There are two sports reporter positions in Danville and three people currently in the department, including the sports editor, whose position has been eliminated. The two writers who remain will answer to a regional SE based in Lynchburg.

    Besides the entire copy desk, other positions eliminated include one of two assistant editors, the opinion page editor, the lifestyles editor, the sports editor, one of two photographers and two of three newsroom clerks. Additionally, the sports editor position in Rockingham is being replaced by a single sports reporter position.

    There will be a slight increase in news reporter positions both in Danville and Rockingham.

    Interviews for the remaining positions will be conducted in the next three days. Decisions on who remains and in what capacity will be announced April 6 and take effect immediately.
  8. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    Was Drew ever replaced as SE?
  9. Jake_Taylor

    Jake_Taylor Well-Known Member

    He was replaced by Paul Long.

    The way I understand it, Chris Morris in Lynchburg will be in charge of the sports section for a paper that is 1.5 hours away in another state. That makes a lot of sense. ::)
  10. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    And Paul Long is gonzo? Or can he apply for one of the writing jobs?
  11. Jake_Taylor

    Jake_Taylor Well-Known Member

    I think Paul can apply for one of the remaining jobs... if he wants to.
  12. Hustle

    Hustle Guest

    Eh, lay off the peons - or do so without actually doing so - and add another layer of management. Hope Graham enjoys his retirement.
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page