2014 training program includes several new topics

By Dennis Hetzel, Executive Director

Dennis Hetzel


Please give us a few minutes of your time.

Today we are unveiling an online survey of Ohio Newspaper Association members to determine your training needs and, frankly, to test your interest in actually participating in such programs if ONA offered them.

Time and money get stretched more than ever. Some things you would like to do no longer are realistic to do. When our Professional Development Committee strategized about what our program should look like, we realized we needed more information.

Just click here to go straight to the survey.

Once the survey is completed, the committee will take a look at our 2014 plans to see if we want to modify. The results will really help in future years as well.

Meanwhile, just like you, we need to keep moving. Here is what our 2014 training plans look like:

Motivating and retaining great sales people: This is confirmed as our pre-convention workshop at our annual convention on Feb. 5. Zach Ahrens of Gatehouse Ohio Media will lead the program, and we urge advertising managers to sign up. It should be a great session. For more information, click here.

District manager training: This spring we will work with our Circulation Managers Committee to offer a topical program for Ohio district managers.

Latest developments in Ohio Sunshine Laws: This is one of our most popular annual webinars. We will do a 2014 version in the fall.

Video training for beginners: We are planning a late spring or fall day of training that will be relevant to news, advertising and marketing people who want to get a start in video.  Jim Foust of Bowling Green State University will lead.

Tips and tricks with software tools:  This is always popular, and we usually rotate with experienced trainers Lisa Griffin and Kevin Slimp. We will invite one of them back this year and try to make the 2014 session even more hands-on.

Covering Ohio’s juvenile courts:  Editors on our committee say this is badly needed. Juvenile courts are both extremely newsworthy and tricky to cover. Ohio, by the way, allows more access to juvenile courts than many states.

You might ask why we picked those topics. We have followed a few concepts that seem to make sense. The survey will test these points, too:

  1. We must keep training as inexpensive as possible.
  2. We should avoid duplicating programs that are offered by other media organizations unless we have an opportunity to get a truly exceptional trainer on a high-priority topic at a convenient cost and location if it is in-person training.
  3. We should focus our training on relevant topics that you won’t get elsewhere. Generally, this means that Ohio-centric topics are our priorities. (Examples: journalist training on stories such as legalized gaming and oil and gas drilling, workshops on Ohio’s public notice laws and lawyer-led training on issues in Ohio sunshine laws.)

Meanwhile, ONA members continue to receive discounts as a part of their membership with many programs and conferences offered by the Local Media Association and the Iowa-based Online Media Campus. As always, we welcome your comments and suggestions. Please take the survey, and feel free to contact me as well.

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