Like many other association professionals I know, I “fell” into this line of work. Armed with a journalism degree but working in retail, I answered a job posting in a newspaper (remember those?) and was hired as the associate editor for a business credit magazine. When I made the career transition in November, my store manager was so mad she said, “I hope you fail.” That was my first lesson in how to be a better manager.
My first associate editor job taught me a lot about writing, editing and publishing a magazine. This was a long time ago when authors sent in copy on a floppy disk through snail mail, and we actually used grease pencils to mark up the hard copy blue line. I fell in love with association publishing and eventually went on to work for four other magazines.
I stayed in association publishing for 20 years because I love serving the members. It’s pretty simple: When you make a positive impact on someone, it can be a rewarding experience. And, you get paid to read, write and edit. It’s a word nerd’s dream! Who wouldn’t want this job?
All of the industry talk about “print is dead,” “magazines are passé” and where is the “future of publishing” is overblown. Don’t listen to the naysayers. If we knew how to predict the future, the lottery would cease to exist. When you create good content that your audience is in love with; when that content aligns with your mission, you deliver it in various forms; measure it adjust it when necessary; and profit from it—you will likely be in business for a long time. This YouTube video titled “The Future of Publishing” is on point about how content creation is in your hands. Know. Your. Audience.