Split Personalities: How to Design New Products in a Small News Organization

AKA: what to do when editorial, technology, design and product management all converge… on you. Most small newsrooms have at least one jack (or jill) of all trades, and that role has evolved quickly for people who dabble in the various areas of digital. A little web editing, a little photo-editing, a little coding, a little browser testing and all of a sudden you’re bouncing between departments trying to ensure everyone’s on the same page about the upcoming new //thing// you’re pushing out. You’re in a headlines meeting, you’re QA-ing with developers, you’re writing a little CSS, you’re filing bug tickets. Here are 10 things I’ve learned about being the diplomat between editorial and technology, balancing efficiency with collaboration and staying sane through it all.

Emma Carew Grovum

Director for Digital Content Development, Foreign Policy


Emma Carew Grovum is a DC-based journalist with experience in data visualization, breaking news, audience engagement, and digital strategy. She’s currently the Director for Digital Content Development at Foreign Policy magazine, where she oversees editorial products, the website, social media strategy, newsletters and emerging platforms. She has previously held a range of newsroom jobs, including data journalist, homepage producer, social media editor, and local reporter. Emma has worked for Webbmedia Group, the Chronicle of Philanthropy, Cooking Club magazine, and the Minneapolis Star Tribune. She is the co-founder of Diversify.JournalismWith.Me, a project to identify journalists of color doing high level work in the digital space. Emma is an alumni of Spark Camp, the Chips Quinn Scholars, ThreeSixty Journalism, the University of Minnesota, and has previously spoken at conferences for the Online News Association, Investigative Reporters and Editors, the Asian American Journalists Association and the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies.