Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Less is more, so will we lose managers?

When I read this morning that new Northcliffe group managing director Steve Auckland had announced he was to appoint three regional publishers to replace the roles of regional editors and MDs I was actually quite pleased.

I'm not a completely heartless bastard, however if there are cuts to be made - and I'm not completely averse to that looking around some newsrooms at the complete losers drawing a wage - I would prefer to start the cull at the top and work down, rather than do away with roles which are needed in a bid to avoid paying off the regional director of useless shit and management speak.

Imagine my disappointment then when we discover that while the roles will "replace" those of regional editors and MDs, in the next breath "Northcliffe says no one is likely to lose their job".

So, in fact what I thought was a decent start to lowering costs for struggling newspapers across the UK, is actually just bringing in another manager on big money.


However, perhaps all hope is not lost.

Part of my initial thinking on the move - back when I thought it was perhaps the most sensible thing I'd heard for a while - was that maybe, just maybe, Auckland was backing up his promise "to do away with the corporate stuff and get the editors and the managing directors free to do what they want to do".

And it still could be - with an ever-more-distant 'regional publisher' (let's face it, there will be three of the feckers covering the entire country), I don't see how they can be hands-on in their approach.

Fingers crossed more power returns to editors up and down the land, tasked merely with delivering certain things, and how they do it is up to them.

Then they can begin the middle-management cull.

Directors of public sector loss making advertising based in the office having pointless meetings everywhere, brace yourselves!

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