Sahil Koul

What are the things if a Editor learns, will be helpful in long run?

I want to decide my preference kindly answer at the earliest

by Sahil Koul
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RE: What are the things if a Editor learns, will be helpful in long run?

Meghna Mukherjee
Meghna Mukherjee
Verified Career Expert
Counselor at Adaptive Minds
  • Mumbai

Hi Sahil,

Let me first begin with a quote,
"The work of a good editor, like the work of a good teacher, does not reveal itself directly; it is reflected in the accomplishments of others.
(William Shawn, editor of The New Yorker from 1952 until 1987)

Remember this line all your life, it is the most important quality you need as an editor because you shoulder responsibility with the entire team

Though one learns while on work, and will continuously keep learning, this is the most important thing you need to keep in mind. You may be at the top level, but your openness to Learning will be the key factor to help you succeed.

Some of the other traits an Editor must possess are:

  • Curiosity:"Curiosity is perhaps the main quality," you need as an editor. The thirst for knowledge will lead you to the extra bit needed in this profession.

Empathy: A kind of feeling what the other person would feel, by being in their place. A bond with the reader, an almost subliminal notion of what will be interesting and important to her or him - even though the reader might not know so at the time.
Self-confidence, strong enough that it will not be swayed by a seeming setback or polls or a focus group. Yes, you listen to those things, but you have an inner sense of what you want to do - and you do it.

"Follow your instincts," : Sometimes what your gut feelings are, even though it may be harsh, it is always correct. Generally readers like honesty and honesty is possible only when you follow your instincts.
Fearless, : As its said, "The pen is mightier than a Sword:. So you have nothing to fear about. Though criticism would surround you, you need to be fearless, as you have the pen in your hands.
Stamina. Andre Laguerre, the legendary editor of Sports Illustrated (1960-74), defined this as both the physical stamina needed to fill the grinding demands of the job, and the intellectual stamina required to suffer idiosyncratic talents constantly and willingly.
Best reporter and motivator: Your staff looks upto you for enlightenment. The way you report the idea and the way your body language is will determine the output your team will follow.
You have to get out and get around and persuade your staff to do stories of what people are really talking about on Saturday night or early Sunday Morning.
When I say reporter, I also mean going out and connecting with people at their levels.
You also have to get out to see how your readers are changing.
A Strong team: great editors know that they don't have all the answers, and so they surround themselves with people more knowledgeable and more talented than they.

Learn to say "NO": This is the biggest challenge you would face being an editor. A junior reporter will come up with a story because he or she is all enthused, but you need to be firm and say no.
Counselor:Not only feeling for others, but also counseling them is your duty. The team may get frustrated due to the constant rework or inflexible timings or criticism from others, but you need to show them that you are there and be supportive of them. You may have to organize some get-to-gether or snacks or even sometimes leave your cabin and give then a helping hand.
"Patience is a great virtue for an editor, but patience must not be confused with being a nice guy, and it must not be confused with uncertainty. Any sign that the leader is confused is disastrous."
Mentor:Your team must look upto you. You need to be an example of what you expect out of your team. You need to be more of a nurturing parent than the dictatorial, finger-waving, stern uncle.
If you are a great editor, you serve as teacher and role model. And staff members try to emulate you. They may even employ some of your lessons, your principles, your practices for years to come.
A Critical Thinker: Deriving meaning from meaning is being critical. But that helps because all the questions that a reader may have after reading the article, you and your team have initially brainstormed it. So the article cannot go wrong anywhere.

In-short as an editor, you are the one who leads a team, but at the same time need to connect with the team and being the face to the common man, you need to connect with them too.

Hope this helps.

Wish you good luck...........

RE: What are the things if a Editor learns, will be helpful in long run?

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