- “Traditionally, media management used to supervised the production of journalism,” said Jill Geisler, senior faculty member at the Poynter Institute said. “Now, they lead constant change. I think today’s news managers have learned that IQ isn’t enough. They have to be emotionally intelligent. They have to be able to inspire and motivate.”
During the session, Geisler and Scott Libin, senior fellow a the University of Minnesota School of Journalism and Mass Communication discussed the core areas of effective management in the digital age, including conflict resolution, innovation, leadership skills and performance management.
“Managers have to work at a strategic level and always look ahead,” Geisler said. “They have to know what’s around the corner in the industry while still keeping an eye on the quality of today’s news.”
The author of “Work Happy: What Great Bosses Know” distinguished the difference between management and leadership, citing the former as crucial to a successful newsroom.
“Leadership is what’s most important in a newsroom. Management is also important. [Management] is making sure the trains run on time. It’s making sure that people are doing what they’re supposed to be. Leadership is showing that you care. It’s inspiring. It’s motivating.”
Geisler outlined the most prominent challenges in the media industry as a changing business model, constantly changing technology, a need to understand audience behavior and a need develop multimedia journalism skills. She encouraged practices of timely feedback and proper motivation in the newsroom.
“On a scale of 1-10, how good are you at giving feedback?” Geisler said. “Feedback is information with intention to influence. Fear is not a motivator.”
The future of management will follow the lead of the innovation practices of today’s leaders, Geisler said.
“I think that today’s managers are setting the tone for tomorrow’s managers,” she said. “There was a time when people could say do it because I’m the boss. Now managers have to inspire, motivate, coach and train. And tomorrow that will be equally important. They have to be able to do all of that while still strategizing, as our business changes on an almost daily basis.