What They Learn  | American Journalism Review
From AJR,   April 2000

What They Learn   

What IS management training, anyway? Wonder what you actually learn in these classes? Here's a sampling of what's on the menu around the country:

By Sharyn Vane
Sharyn Vane has written and edited at papers in Colorado, Florida and Texas.      

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   » Middle Management Blues
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Knight Ridder's "Stock Your Toolbox" chainwide program for new managers includes instruction on personnel evaluations, what you should and shouldn't say when conducting a job interview and dealing with problem employees.

The Charlotte Observer's four-week class for editors includes a session on side-by-side editing and offering constructive criticism. ("Your reporters shouldn't be surprised when they pick up the paper," says trainer Michael Weinstein.)

"Tools for Performance Leaders," a.k.a. Zenger-Miller, used by some Knight Ridder papers, features classes on performance reviews, correcting performance problems and encouraging the employees you supervise to buy in on new programs or ways of doing things. Zenger-Miller's "FrontLine Leadership," a longer program in use at some Cox newspapers, includes instruction on running meetings, building a good relationship with your supervisor and problem-solving.

Gannett's Senior Editor Management Development program features instruction on how the newsroom dovetails with other departments at a newspaper and in-depth discussions with department heads on problems they face. Another of Gannett's programs, aimed at midlevel editors, offers suggestions on improving reporter-editor relationships.

The Atlanta Journal and Constitution's AJC Newsroom Leaders program includes a session on making meetings more effective.

Poynter's "New Leaders in the Newsroom" session is aimed at teaching new editors how to set and clarify expectations, negotiate effectively and collaborate with others.

API's "Critical Management Skills" features instruction on motivating staffers, communicating effectively and coaching employees.

--S.V.

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