Over at The Atlantic, Bob Cohn, in reflecting on the applicant hunt for “several dozen” jobs that went to young journalists, realizes that today’s job hunter needs to be, well, everything:
What we’re looking for, I’ve come to realize, is people who can do a bit of everything: report and write stories; write headlines and deks; select and crop photos; fact check and copy edit the work of others; make charts and graphs; oversee social media; manage outside writers. (And hey, can you do some coding?)
This change reflects — or dwarfs — the other changes going on around news orgs everyday:
This transition from vertical job descriptions to horizontal job descriptions is perhaps the most profound change in newsrooms that are full of change. I can’t say whether this is a sign of trouble or triumph for journalism. Probably both. But it is definitely a matter of fact.
Don’t fret, j-students, because Cohn lays out just what kind of new hire he’s looking for:
The best hires possess a kind of creativity and entrepreneurialism that my peers and I surely didn’t have at that age. Today’s young web journalists are learning to frame and write stories in innovative ways. …
What might that innovative way of framing stories look like in a job interview? Cohn tackles that a few graphs later:
We also look for a candidate’s ability to make lateral connections across topics. In interviewing business writers, we might ask about tax policy and retail trends but we’re most interested in how candidates think about non-business topics–and whether they have the instinct to apply a business or economics lens to everyday subjects.