A magazine managing editor is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operation of a magazine. Most magazines employ several editors, designers and writers. The managing editor is responsible for supervising these groups of people and making sure they work together as a cohesive unit in order to create a strong publication.
A managing editor is responsible for hiring writers, editors and designers who can help the magazine fulfill its mission. For many magazine managing editors, this includes finding employees who can adapt their skills to not only print publications, but also Internet publishing. The managing editor is often involved in the final interviews when new editorial or design talent is hired. Similarly, the managing editor is in charge of evaluating employee performance and terminating employees who do not meet standards. Magazine managing editors may periodically write columns for the magazines they edit. Sometimes the columns deal with specific issues related to the magazine's mission.
The magazine managing editor plays a significant role in determining the success of a magazine. The managing editor serves as the eyes and ears of an publisher. Because the managing editor has a better understanding of the day-to-day operations in editorial and design areas, the publisher relies on the managing editor to help him understand which of his ideas or initiatives are working and which are not. The managing editor also discusses changes in publishing methods with the publisher in an effort to determine which types of new practices or procedures will work and how they can be implemented.
A magazine managing editor needs to have people skills, both to lead a team of employees and to build relationships with outside contacts. A managing editor is responsible for attending trade shows as a visitor, but also sometimes as a speaker or a panelist.
Experience and Salary
Most magazine managing editors have several years of experience in the world of publishing before they become managing editors. Many managing editors are former magazine writers and editors. According to PayScale.com, managing editors in magazine jobs earned average wages between $40,156 and $57,992 per year, as of July 2010.
Education and Skills
Many magazine managing editors have a college degree in English or journalism. Some also have master's degrees, although this is not always a requirement. Managing editors who work for special interest magazines generally have a background dealing with the topic of the magazine. Managing editors must have excellent grammar skills, up-to-date computer skills and the ability to keep up with new publishing and information-gathering technologies.
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