Younger Journalists Facing Layoffs

There is a certain reality young journalists must face when landing your new job – lay offs.

In an environment where every newspaper is struggling to stay alive, the new kids on the job don’t particularly have much to which they can hold on.

The Poynter Institute published a letter in 2008 in which a young journalist had been laid off. In the letter, he said most of his job offers now came from “the dark side,” otherwise known as Public Relations.

In his answer, Joe Grimm, visiting editor with Poynter in residence at the Michigan State University School of Journalism, told the young journalist he was looking at his problem completely wrong.

The young man blamed his troubles on the changing industry, and Grimm agreed. He did not lose his job because his skills were subpar; he lost it because they did not fit.

The answer is then to make your skills fit.

The industry is changing and what young journalists now need to ask themselves is this: What are my advantages? How can I diversify myself enough to become marketable in any and every medium?

The biggest advantage of all is that young journalists have the time and the drive to become versed in more than just print. The industry is changing, but they need to realize they are the ones making the changes.


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