On Monday the 6th of June I will be starting a new job at the Telegraph and yes – it is very exciting to be able to write that sentence. I successfully interviewed for their recently advertised ‘Community Manager’ position and was offered the job last week.
So this is a report looking back on what I have learnt from the Guardian and why I am very excited about the move to the Telegraph.
When I make the move I will have spent seven months – almost to the day – at the Guardian and it has been a great place to cut my teeth in an area of journalism that is growing month by month at the moment.
Our engagement with our readers and our use of networks and new social tools to better source our news and content is becoming an increasing important skill and function within the modern news room.
The Telegraph is looking to expand on its presence in these areas and I will be working with Kate Day (@kate_day) who is the Social Media and Engagement Editor for the Telegraph
Several of the hacks have their own good news to report over the next few days and newspapers are hiring – as evidenced by the Guardian looking for two ‘breaking news reporters’ - what I am getting at is that there are opportunities out there for the young wannabes.
Yes, it’s damn tough and you have to want it really bad but it can be done – you can get your foot on the first rung of the ladder.
So what am I taking to my new job?
- You can always do a better job: it is always possible to perform a task in a smarter, better though through way.
- Create frameworks: Can you take what you learn in one instance and apply it again, will it save you time (can you improve it the second, third, fourth time around?)
- ASK: When you don’t know something ask and when you can see others struggling, help – you will never regret either action
- Speak up: You can’t score if you’re not on the pitch – if you have a story idea, new angle, new idea. If you have seen a new piece of tech, read a comment piece or have reservations about a project you should nearly always voice these early on. You can save time and effort later if it’s a good idea and get credit if it’s a great one.
- Be prepared to make mistakes: A good company / boss won’t think less of you for trying something out; the media industry needs some innovation from somewhere and it will be lots of small ones, not a single large one that helps journalism grow and stay afloat – no reason it can’t come from you.
What do I wish I had done differently?
At all the job interviews I have had (not many) I wish I had asked more questions and better questions – as much as an employer is looking for high quality candidates, you are looking for an employer with vision and ambition.
I have nearly always failed to ask all the right questions (or even just some good ones) and had to play catch up later which is a waste of every ones time and makes you feel a little stupid when you find yourself asking later on.
Preparing well for an interview isn’t just about presentation and having good answers.
Well I am looking forward to giving you a few updates from the Telegraph and passing on any more stories and experiences that I think you will find useful.
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