Just published is a new Wan-Ifra Guide to help media executives initiate change in their newsrooms. The handbook summarizes key lessons shared during the Cultural Change Ignition Program for Latin American News Publishers.
The Cultural Change Ignition Program was co-organized by Wan-Ifra and the Facebook Journalism Project from October 2020 to January 2021. It worked with 30 media leaders from fifteen news companies from Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Mexico, to refresh their digital and management skills and reflect on guiding their companies into the future.
“During the sessions, participants were invited to consider profound day-to-day cultural changes within their news organizations, conceptualize their role in society and rethink the ways they operate, compete and monetize” explained Julieta Shama, Head of News Partnerships at Facebook for Spanish Speaking Latin America.
“News organizations worldwide have taken important steps to adapt to the digital era. But some measures are just not enough,” said Rodrigo Bonilla, Americas Director, WAN-IFRA. “To adapt to the complexity and speed of the digital age, to remain relevant and necessary, you have to stop, think and comprehensively transform the way in which news media companies operate. Digital transformation requires a new mentality, which understands that change is not the exception, but the rule in the world in which we live.”
The program included the participation of 9 top-level media experts such as Columbia Business School Professor and best-selling author Rita McGrath; media expert Ken Doctor; Anita Zielina, News Innovation and Leadership Director at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY; and former BBC and World Editors Forum member, Dmitry Shishkin. It was led by Diego Carvajal, Regional Digital Director for Discovery LATAM and US Hispanics.
The guide offers four strategies to help media executives initiate change in their newsrooms. Each chapter goes into detail — in a practical and visual way — to provide tips and examples from experts who spoke during the program:
Chapter 1. Put the user at the center
Chapter 2. Adopt a product mindset
Chapter 3. Implement effective leadership
Chapter 4. Build a data-driven strategy