Learning from Layoffs


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  • Three regionals – morning, evening, Sunday – and 13 weeklies, 66 magazines and commercial websites, including one for Visit Wales
  • Question 13We asked what percentage of the total company revenue will have to come from sources outside traditional print business in order to achieve the company’s objectives, and the vast majority of respondents responded between six and 20 percent in the next year, with respondents from North America and Western Europe and Nordic Europe responding with significantly higher revenue needs from revenues beyond print. These findings directly correlate to the fact that Europe and North America are hardest hit by the financial downturn and are experiencing pressure ….
  • You can see the significant response in these ranges , particularly impactful are the responses from North America and Nordic Europe and Western Europe, which are experiencing the worst impact fot he economic crisis
  • Question 14The same question was asked regarding the total revenue needed from sources outside of print media, but this time over the next five years. This time, the majority of respondents said their companies will need 21 percent or more, with between 20 percent and 50 percent of the respondents saying they will need at least 31 to 40 percent of their revenue to come from non-print sources.
  • Now, if we break out the responses for the five-year question, you will see respondents feel they will need far more revenue from non-advertising sources in order to achieve the company’s financial objectives….
  • Source: Spilsbury, Mark (2002) Journalists at WorkSkillset, July 2002.
  • Based on the Grief Cycle model first published in On Death & Dying, Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, 1969. The Kübler-Ross (1969) model of the ‘grief cycle’ in bereavement has been applied to other forms of personal trauma such as losing a job. It describes 5 emotions that are commonly expressed by victims, although more than one can be present at a time, as some of these respondents show. One stage is denial, a conscious or unconscious refusal to accept traumatic change. Another is anger and a third bargaining, seeking to mitigate the trauma by negotiating a compromise. The depression stage includes fear, sadness, regret, and uncertainty. Eventually the victim will come to acceptance, the ability to show emotional detachment and objectivity about the event.Interpretation by Alan Chapman 2006-2009. http://www.businessballs.com/elisabeth_kubler_ross_five_stages_of_grief.htm)
  • ANGER (14%):
  • Qu 20) What worries you the most about your future? 53 people (93%) answered the question. The largest group, 26 (46%) directly stated money, such as bills, pensions, basics. The first 5 (9%) also express concerns about the quality or simply the absence of employment.lack of money to pursue own ideasinability to pay mortgage/bills, having to take a job idont want to do to do this.I worry about money and I worry about direction - where I'm going, what I'm doing, who I now am.The uncertainty, lack of security and finances.lack of work and moneyPaying the bills!Money$Paying the mortgage, council tax, electricity, gas and water bills, having enough for my pension, and eating. No much really/Funding a retirement that may, in reality, have already begun.regular incomemoney!financial instabilityThe immediate financial uncertainty of the next three monthsA poverty-stricken old age.My pension plan is in a state of shockMy pensionMy pensionFinancial concerns (I've had to accept a drop in salary with the career move from journalism).Paying the bills and eating!no pensionBeing unable to support my family financially.Not earning enough...My mortgage.Money.  13 (23%) say their main concern is finding work, or specifically work that they would want to do. Using their skills, job satisfaction, instability and career progression are important factors.That I'm not going to make a living from our website and I'll have to temp or something similarly mind-numbing to pay the mortgage.That I'll never work again. Journalists are not qualified to do anything else.Getting another jobEnsuring that my company works, and that I can provide jobs for graduates in the north, so that they don't have to move to London if they don't want to.Uncertainty, lack of stability, no long term strategy at present.Not being able to get a job that will use my skills and experienceThat I'll never have the job I want. That the career I've chosen isn't going to make me any money of deliver social cahe or provide me with job satisfaction.Job satisfactionFear of recession forcing me to take a dead end jobNot being able to fit in with the rest of the journalism-less workplace.Finding work, as good writing is becoming a lost art - social media is the way forward, apparently.no joblack of jobs 3 (5%) talk about worries for the industry, including how it tackles this crisis to concerns for democracy.Lack of interest from newspaper managements in journalism, journalists, readers and advertisers. It's all about accountants, profits, balance sheets. People will still buy good newspapers, people will still advertise - but investment is needed; energy is needed; commitment is needed.Terrible business modelsthat journalists of the future will lack the knowledge and drive to challenge abuses of power.  8 (14%) mention their age and whether it might prevent them from future success.Age and lackl of opportunitiesThat I haven't got oneMy age - I am 49 and although highly skilled and experienced there is no doubt age is now a media barrier.Whether I will be considered good enough to become a Lawyer as I am now a mature student.Growing oldThat I won't successfully be able to transition old-world skills into something lucrative and modernThe speed at which things move.Actually having something to do that I believe is worth doing and not becoming a dinosaur with no chance of work. A lucky 4 (7%) are unconcerned about the future.Nothing much. Death, a bit.NothingI feel more secure as a freelance than a stafferNow I am out of newspapers my worries about my future are significantly less.
  • Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Root_of_all_evil
  • Learning from Layoffs

    1. 1. Learning <br />from layoffs<br />Lessons from the experiences of UK journalists <br />who have lost their jobs<br />François Nel<br />Director: Journalism Leaders Programme <br />School of Journalism, Media & Communication<br />University of Central Lancashire, Preston <br />FPNel@uclan.ac.uk<br />
    2. 2. theagenda<br />2<br />1. Context of the research <br />2. Notes on method<br />3. (Some of) what we found in our research <br />4. Questions – and contributions<br />
    3. 3. Estimated newspaper publishing market decline in OECD countries, 2007-2009 <br />UK <br />-22%<br />Long term structural changes incustomer behaviour& short term changes in economic context <br />Source: OECD. (2010): Future of News and the Internet http://www.oecd.org/document/48/0,3343,en_2649_33703_45449136_1_1_1_1,00.html<br />
    4. 4. Convergence & consolidation <br />
    5. 5. 5<br />There's not enough advertising in the world to make all the websites profitable. We'd rather have fewer people come to our website, but paying.<br />Uncertainty and experimentation <br />in the business context <br />
    6. 6. industry analyst Clare Enders in December 2008 predicted that that up to a third of the nearly 1300 regional newspaper titles will shut in the next five years making 10,000 people redundant (McNally, 2008); six months later, she revised her forecast downwards. In June 2009, Enders told a parliamentary select committee investigation into the future of local radio and newspaper that she expected that as many as one in every two papers may fold by 2014 (McNally 2009) <br />Forecasts are grim. <br />
    7. 7.
    8. 8.
    9. 9.
    10. 10.
    11. 11. By contrast, university programmes & enrolment continued to grow <br />
    12. 12. Fulltime first-year UK UG in Journalism<br />
    13. 13. Fulltime Postgraduates in Journalism <br />
    14. 14. UG journalism as percentage of total enrolment <br />
    15. 15. Research Questions<br />RQ1:How do journalists experience the process of being laid off? <br />RQ2:What do they do next? <br />(RQ3:Who is being laid off?)<br />15<br />
    16. 16. A 31-question online survey was developed drawing on an instrument developed by Scott Reinardy for a US study conducted in summer 2009 (but not yet reported). <br />The survey was promoted through thea partnership with the trade website journalism.co.uk, which wrote three stories about the study and posted a link on their jobs page. Stories about the study also appeared in HoldtheFrontPage and on the Society of Editors site, as well as on the author’s blog a. The survey link was also distributed by J.co.uk & the author via social media, including Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Skype (status).<br />There were 144was collected between 15th October 2009 and 31st January 2010. The findings were analysed using simple descriptive statistics; as the sample was self-selecting and therefore not generalizable, more sophisticated statistical measurements were not viable here. <br />16<br />Notes on the method<br />
    17. 17. Senior managers accounted for 27% of the respondents, production editors 36% and content makers 38%<br />
    18. 18. *Gender<br />*Labour Force Survey 2001: 51% male, 49% female <br />
    19. 19. Laid Off Study <br />2010<br />28% are 22-29<br />20% are 30-39<br />More than half are 40+<br />19% are 40-49<br />33% are 50-66 <br />Labour Force Survey 2001<br />35% are 22-29<br />32% are 30-39<br />Less than a third are 40+<br />Age<br />
    20. 20. *Race (as defined in UK census)<br />* Labour Force Survey 2001: 96% identified as white.<br />
    21. 21. Skills Foresight 2001:70% of association professional and technical occupations (incl journalists) have Level 4<br />Laid Off: 64% have Level 4+, 35% have NCTJ, <br />
    22. 22. I consider journalism a calling <br />
    23. 23. n = 43 <br />Journalism defines who I am <br />
    24. 24. n = 43 <br />Journalism is just a job for me <br />
    25. 25. I am proud to tell people I am a journalist<br />
    26. 26. Journalism is a satisfying profession<br />
    27. 27. Have you found other work? <br />
    28. 28. Please mark the item that best describes<br /> your career plans<br />
    29. 29. N=20<br />If you are returning to studying or intend to receive training what profession will you pursue<br />
    30. 30. Before you were laid off, did you expect to retire as a journalist? <br />
    31. 31. Do you STILL expect to retired as a journalist? <br />
    32. 32.  <br />49 (34%) people answered the question. There are some very moving replies expressing personal feelings of pain and loss. Of those, 36 (73%) spoke of these kind of negative emotions. A minority 4 (8%) expressed positive emotions, such as finding better alternative employment. <br />What is it like for you knowing your career in traditional newspaper journalism might be finished??<br />
    33. 33. I feel sad and slightly numb about it all, even after all this time.<br />: <br />Denial(8%)<br />
    34. 34. I feel shit after reading that question and wish I had never even tried to get into this bloody profession.<br />Sad, mostly, as I think responsible local newspapers are the glue holding together communities; also angry, that the industry is being been ruthlessly dismantled by uncreative, uncaring bean-counters<br />f to give people the service they deserve that been very frustrating. It has Very sad. Not having sufficient staf’ become "how little can we give for how much?"<br />I am devastated, verging on depression. I did a good job and made my magazine profitable and then doubled profits and doubled them again but for greedy managements that wasn't enough.<br />Frustrating given that the biggest threat to newspaper journalism is from the owners/management driven by the City and shareholders<br />It's quite upsetting. I've sweated blood for varoius employers, only to be thrown on to the scrapheap<br />Frustrating<br />Annoying. I like to read from paper<br />Anger(14%)<br />
    35. 35. Depressing - not just personally, but because I worry that the world will be less well-informed than it ought to be in the future.<br />Very sad - not just for me but for the industry which is run by money-hungary companies who care little for readers - specially locally. They are the ones to suffer.<br />Breaks my heart. Yes that's a cliche but I can't believe the product I grew up with has been ruined and that the job I loved is no more. I tried to get other jobs but there were too many other journalists with the same idea. I <br />never wanted to be a broadcast journalist so I had no option but to leave. I worked as a multimedia editor too which I did not enjoy. It wasn't challenging enough so there is no point sticking around.<br /> An understanding that much of what I have valued in this world is gone forever and, with it, my ability to provide for my family financially.<br />Gutting, wreching, heart breaking<br />Devastating really. I am trying to make the witch to new media, but even then the money that can be made writing or editing online is quite small and not really enough for a writer to be able to make a serious career out of it<br />Disappointing, but unfortunately, the industry is too centred around London and the south and I am simply not willing to live at such poor pay rates in such an expensive location.<br />Soul destroying<br />Harrowing<br />VERY UPSETTING <br />Depression(40%)<br />
    36. 36. A quarter of the respondents showed signs of acceptance, though in some cases mixed with depression. Resignation and lack of surprise are counterpoised by positive expressions that the future is, or will be better.<br />I'm finding it a struggle to accept that I may never play a part in traditional newspaper journalism again, however <br />I'm excited about what the future may hold, and I feel compassion for my former colleagues who are still at the <br />coal face.<br />Wonderful!<br />Resigned to it<br />Acceptance(25%)<br />
    37. 37. A minority (8%) expressed positive emotions, such as finding better alternative employment<br />Explore new options (8%)<br />
    38. 38. 53 people (37%) answered the question. Of those, the largest group, 26 (46%) directly stated money, such as bills, pensions, basics. Some (9%) also express concerns about the quality or simply the absence of employment<br />lack of money to pursue own ideas<br />inability to pay mortgage/bills, having to take a job idont want to do to do this.<br />A poverty-stricken old age.<br />Being unable to support my family financially.<br />Not earning enough...<br />My mortgage.<br />My pension<br />My penstion<br />That I'll never work again. Journalists are not qualified to do anything else.<br />Ensuring that my company works, and that I can provide jobs for graduates in the north, so that they don't have to move to London if they don't want to.<br />Paying the bills!<br />Money<br />What worries you most about your future?<br />
    39. 39. Knowing what you know now, would you still have become a journalist? <br />
    40. 40. ?<br />What can we learn from the experiences of UK journalists who have lost their jobs? <br />
    41. 41. In an earlier investigation into ways that European journalism schools addressed innovation, Bierhoff et al (2000) concluded that educators in different countries need to engage in a dialogue with each other as well as the industry. <br />This study suggests that, in the interests of equipping graduates not only for employment in a turbulent sector but for wider employability and entrepreneurship, those who have left – or have been forced out of –newsrooms need to be brought into that conversation, too. <br />
    42. 42. Thank you. <br />I look forward to your insights, questions & suggestions. <br />François Nel<br /> FPNel@uclan.ac.uk<br /> @francoisnel<br />