Tips for managing your career, especially for job seekers.

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Manager alert: pay attention to your best people

For the better part of the past two weeks, I needed a good slapping.

I don’t mean that literally, though some of the people in my life might wish I did. What I needed was someone to snap me out of the insecure funk I get in from time to time.

I had writer’s block.

Do you ever get it? Ideas that seem so clear in my brain get hijacked and disappear somewhere en route to the keyboard. I start a sentence, delete it, start another and delete that, too. I get up and walk the dog, stare some more at the laptop, send out Facebook birthday wishes, stare at the laptop, get a cup of coffee…

Before long, my insecurities win. I am convinced I will never write again.… Read more

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Tuesday, July 01, 2014

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How I might have responded to Clay Shirky’s student

Is it unfair to steer journalism students to jobs in print publications?

That question rumbled in my mind like a storm cloud after reading a provocative recent essay by Professor Clay Shirky. I learn a lot from his work and was eager to learn more.

Shirky described a recent moment in which he addressed about 200 students in a college journalism class. One student asked him, “So how do we save print?”

Shirky answered: “I was speechless for a moment, then exploded, telling her that print was in terminal decline and that everyone in the class needed to understand this if they were thinking of journalism as a major or a profession….This was a room full of people who would rather lick asphalt than subscribe to a paper publication; what on earth would make them think print was anything other than a wasting asset?”

Shirky concluded that adults were “lying to them.” Those lies, according to the professor, included futile efforts to save print by various revenue generating schemes.… Read more

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Wednesday, May 07, 2014

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Live chat replay: What opportunities do storytelling apps hold for journalists?

With a solid career in news design Joe Zeff, has become a top designer of apps. Formerly the graphics director at TIME, Zeff designs apps that, among other things, focus on telling stories.

His latest project is Spies of Mississippi, Free in the iTunes store. “Spies of Mississippi” is also a book and a PBS show. All tell about the state campaign to block African American voting rights during the civil rights movement. Zeff’s project, which includes documents that help tell the story, is described as “Unlike a book or documentary, this ‘appumentary’ leverages the multimedia capabilities of the iPad to enable audiences to engage, explore and respond.” We’ll talk about the marriage of traditional journalist values and storytelling with new forms and how journalists can get ready for those opportunities.… Read more

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Tuesday, Apr. 22, 2014

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Live Chat replay: Journalist Rodney Curtis tells how he got laid (off), lived to laugh about it

Rodney Curtis is not right. Like thousands of other journalists, he got laid off. Unlike all the others, though, he decided this would make a funny book, “Getting Laid (Off).” Who does that? Seriously, folks, American Society of News Editors surveys show that newsroom employment is down from a peak of 56,900 in 1989 to 38,000 in 2012. The 2013 number is expected to be smaller.

Poynter career chats feature job opportunities and strategies for journalists, but the new journalism jobs have not filled that gap and many have had to leave the industry. Curtis’ approach seems to be that if you can’t beat ‘em, tickle ‘em. Has it worked for Curtis? Can it work for anyone else?

See below a replay of our Wednesday, April 23, talk with Curtis.… Read more

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Wednesday, Apr. 02, 2014

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Live chat replay: Will crowdfunding finance journalists?

The startup Beacon, one of the newer efforts to fund independent journalists, says it has signed up 100 journalists and several thousand subscribers.

Shane Bauer is now featured on the site, trying to attract funding so that he can cover U.S. prisons for a year. As of Tuesday night, $14,520 had been raised, 19 percent of his goal. The post says a backer has pledged to match up to $37,500. Bauer has a little more than three weeks to raise what he needs. Contributors will get access to Bauer’s stories and all the other stories on the site.

Other journalists on Beacon have told stories about climate change, GMOs, social media and countries around the world.

Could this work for you? Is this a model for supporting journalists and getting stories out?… Read more

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Tuesday, Mar. 18, 2014

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Live chat replay: What sports journalists need to know to compete

In remarks for the College Media Association conference in New York on March 13, Associated Press Vice President Lou Ferrara issued a wake-up call for sports reporters.

He said traditional sports journalism is changing, that game coverage is waning and that general news coverage is what the AP and others need now. Ferrara joined us in a Poynter careers chat at 2 p.m. ET Wednesday to map out the needs.

Ferrara helps the AP orchestrate coverage of big-time sports events like the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi and he has some very specific tips about how sports journalists can get ready for the craft’s future needs.

A replay of the chat is below.

Visit www.poynter.org/chats to find an archive of all past chats.

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Tuesday, Mar. 11, 2014

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Advice from an introvert: It’s time to speak up

I’m an introvert.

A lot of folks are surprised to hear me say that. We’ve seen you teach, they say.

And you were a managing editor.

And you coordinated media relations for a big health-insurance company.

That’s all true. I also can work a crowd, make conversation with people I don’t know, even seize the microphone if that’s what the occasion demands.

But sometimes, despite my best efforts, my introversion takes over.

Like during a faculty meeting I attended recently.

We were discussing, over a lunch of pizza and salad, how we teach ethics. Several of my colleagues jumped right in, taking positions, arguing points, challenging each other. The conversation was lively, sometimes intense.

I popped open another Diet Coke.

It wasn’t that I didn’t want to talk.… Read more

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Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014

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Live chat replay: how to make LinkedIn work for you

With more than a quarter billion people using LinkedIn, almost 100 million of them in the United States, LinkedIn has reach.

But how do you get the most out of it? What can it do for your career other than show people your work history?

LinkedIn Corporate Communication Manager Yumi Wilson will walk us through some strategies. A former journalist and journalism professor, Wilson’s LinkedIn profile says she now links journalists with success. Find out how.

For this chat, open one window for Poynter.org and another for your LinkedIn profile page.

Join us for a live chat on Wednesday at 3 p.m. ET. You can revisit this page at any time to replay the chat after it has ended.

Visit www.poynter.org/chats to find an archive of all past chats.… Read more

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Wednesday, Feb. 05, 2014

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Live chat replay: What happens when a journalism career breaks?

Thousands of journalists have had to pick up the pieces and start over because of layoffs, firings and downsizing.

Warren Watson, executive director of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers, has interviewed several of them and is working on a project about broken journalism careers.

He has had some career interruptions himself. We talked about how journalists restart their career, what they have experienced, how you can be prepared and what kinds of entirely different careers former journalists enter.

Replay the live chat for an honest conversation about strategies for dealing with career interruptions. Watson even shared some very unique career transitions such as a photojournalist who started a gourmet pizza business and another former journalist who is now a dog and horse trainer.… Read more

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Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014

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Understanding opportunities and challenges in sponsored content (Replay chat)

Shane Snow, cofounder with two friends of Contently, manages a network of 25,000 freelancers. According to Contently’s website, the sweet spot where these freelancers thrive is creating content for “brands, nonprofits, and lean new media companies.”

Snow and his team, described as a mashup of journalists and nerds, are on the front edge of branded content or native advertising.

Forbes, a Contently client, recognized Snow this month in “30 under 30: These People are Building the Media Companies of Tomorrow.”

Snow joined us for a live chat on the opportunities, challenges and values of sponsored content.

Participants asked Snow about the ins and outs of branded content.

Twitter users can participate in any Poynter live chat using the hashtag #poynterchats. You can revisit this page at any time to replay the chat after it has ended.… Read more

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