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Your Executive Editor

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by MertWindu, Jul 29, 2006.

  1. SF_Express

    SF_Express Active Member

    I'm happy to weigh in on this one, from a different perspective, but to the point.

    One of the best sports editors I ever had, the question about him was always: "What the hell does he do all day?"

    Well, here's what he did. He assembled a tremendous staff of writers and editors, set a tone about what he expected, participated on the fringes by being invoved in the hiring process or by throwing ideas in there every now and then -- and then basically stayed the hell out of the way of those good people and let them produce one of the best sports sections in the country.

    Since he was so low-key about it -- and definitely not a micromanager, quite the opposite -- there was always the thinking among some that he wasn't earning his pay.

    But he was -- every day one of the best sports sections in the country came out.

    At my last print job, I saw the executive editor a couple of times a month, at most. He wasn't even on the same floor. But he was in charge of a tremendous midsized newspaper and generally beloved and respected by everybody in the company.

    There are bad executive editors and good ones, but don't get too hung up on what you "see" them doing. They're doing budgets and dealing with the publisher, and putting out fires, and setting a tone, and dealing with civic things and communicating with the managing editor, etc.

    In my mind, the higher you go, the less "hands on" you SHOULD be. Believe me, an EE with his or her hands in everything is twice the pain in the ass of one who's perceived to do nothing.
  2. Tierra

    Tierra New Member

    More or less represents editorial interests in paper-wide meetings (ie, meetings where ad staff, without a high-ranking editorial presence, would decide it's a great idea to sell an ad in the flag, turn the website into a giant online classified collection or other similarly wacky ad side ideas).
  3. Sxysprtswrtr

    Sxysprtswrtr Active Member

    Pretty accurate description of the EE at my place of business. He is pretty reputable in our newsroom for someone who is accessible in the office, yet he doesn't have his nose into every story or issue that's going on.
  4. MertWindu

    MertWindu Active Member

    Just hope you folks (yes, all of you) realize how lucky you are. That's all I'm sayin.
  5. Grey

    Grey Member

    "In my mind, the higher you go, the less "hands on" you SHOULD be. Believe me, an EE with his or her hands in everything is twice the pain in the ass of one who's perceived to do nothing."

    this is very true, SF Express. unfortunately, FAR from the case in my current shop.
  6. Ohiowriter

    Ohiowriter Member

    In theory, it works like a pro sports team. The publisher is like the owner. The executive editor is like the general manager who eyes long term shifts in strategy, sets policies, determines budgets, holds meetings. The managing editor would be like the head coach because he/she is in charge of the day-to-day operations and getting the paper out. Then all the section editors would be like assistant coaches (which is why many are referred to as AME/Sports or whatever) who deal with specialized areas of the operation.

    I guess that makes the writers like the players...you know, the talent. ;D

    But you know about theories.
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