OLD Media Moves

Interesting conversations

November 10, 2005

I’ve had three interesting conversations and/or contacts related to business journalism in the past 24 hours that I thought I would pass along for their interest:

1. I was contacted by the CFO of a private company in Connecticut, who had gotten my name from a journalism professor at Quinnipiac University. Seems this CFO is tiring of the corporate world, but wants to use his accounting background to good use and thinks that business journalism may be the field for him. He wanted some advice on how to break into business journalism and what skills might be the most appropriate to emphasize.

2. Got a call this morning from an acquaintance who is the editor of one of the American City Business Journal newspapers. He has an opening for a reporter and wanted some advice on people to go after. In the course of the conversation, we got into a discussion about what weekly business newspapers are doing things right and which ones need some help. It was interesting that our perceptions about good and so-so papers within ACBJ meshed quite similarly. As for his job opening, what about the CFO from Connecticut?

3. The subject line on the last contact read in part, “A journalist who needs help.” It was from a veteran journalist of 30 years who had spent most of his career working for religious publications or writing about religion and suddenly found himself working for an industry publication related to the auto industry. He has been on the job now for 11 months and has done a good job of covering the people and the issues, but the financial accounting stuff is still overwhelming and he needs training. I’ve recommended a book and the Reynolds Center workshops to him, but it sounds like he’ll need more than that. Maybe a crash course from the CFO in Connecticut?

Funny how there’s someone trying to get into business journalism who has tons of financial experience but no writing experience, someone already in business journalism with lots of writing experience but no financial experience and then someone looking to hire a business journalist, preferably with a mixture of both.

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