Help wanted: LAT Editor

Times Publisher David Hiller used his internal blog to lay out the job description for the big job. Several items seem to address the lackings of ex-Editor Jim O'Shea - stuff like needing someone who is Web savvy and who gets out of his office. Hiller supposedly has a short list that includes ME John Arthur and Innovations Editor Russ Stanton. Another name that has popped up is Associate Editor John Montorio. Hiller is supposed to make a decision very soon. Here are some of the things he says he wants:

-- A strong leader who can make change happen in the newsroom, and across the company.

Create a fully multi-media news enterprise, that figures out the right model of integration that also recognizes that interactive audiences and content are different than print.

Lead faster innovation in the print newspaper, designed to be indispensable, relevant, engaging and fun for how people in SoCal live and use print today.

Act on the Reinvent recommendations, and more, to make visible change in the paper. More focus on utility; more graphics and alternative story telling; shorter stories; more inclusive and accessible to more groups.

Solve the local coverage conundrum.

-- Deep commitment to the civic mission of The Times in Los Angeles, reporting the news, shining a light on problems, holding people to account, leading a conversation that will help Los Angeles and Southern California improve and prosper.

-- Relentless focus on readers and online users, to make sure we are serving their needs and interests, in ways they want. Always start with the reader/user. Have a very clear definition of who we are writing for, and what they want/need.

-- Create sense of urgency and speed in making things happen.

-- Generate optimism, people want to win. Build passion and excitement for inventing the future. Get everybody facing forward, not to the past.

-- With me, as Sam says, no surprises. We need to communicate closely.

-- Make sure you engage the newsroom; get out of your office, walk around, talk to people. Communicate and engage the newsroom in the new vision. People want leaders with clear vision who want to make things happen.

-- Recruit and develop great people, turn their energy loose, encourage them to take risks and change things. Work at the speed of the web. Try things, change things, see how they work. We can get better every day.

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Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
Mark Lacter, business writer and editor was 59
The multi-talented Mark Lacter
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