Media management workshop for Iraqi journalists

Fifteen executives in print, broadcast and online outlets from across Iraq could not get enough of a three-day “Media Management” workshop organized by the Journalism Training Program (JTP) at the American University of Beirut and urged organizers to plan for follow-up events.

“The workshop was very useful and of great strategic importance but too short and requires a longer stretch,” said Wahd Ibrahim Mutlaq of Basra’s “Shanatel” AM Radio.

Marketing and communications expert Paul Boulos introduced participants to the Arab media landscape, reviewed regional and international media trends, spoke of global best practices, focused on consumer research and market analysis, highlighted the importance of building brands across platforms and zeroed in on how to cope with the digital world of multimedia.

”It was very positive and provided us with ample information, notably since we’re still learning to cope with free media in Iraq,” commented Mutammam Mohammad Ali of “Al Iraqiyya” TV.

Editor Nadia Hashem of the “National Media Center” said she wished the workshop had lasted up to 12 days, while Taleb Hanoweet of “Al Sabah” newspaper wished the workshop had focused more on Iraq’s current media landscape.

Overall, the participants recognized their need for more workshops and that Iraqi media lacked adequate training in how to manage their respective organizations.

The intensive course June 30-July 2, 2008 involved presentations, team projects and issues of leadership. It was funded by “Support for Independent Media in Iraq (SIMI).

The participants represented SIMI, “Al Mahaba” FM radio, “Al Hurriya” satellite TV, the National Media Center, “Al Furat TV,” “Noa” Radio, “Baghdad” satellite TV, “Al Hura” TV, “Al Takhayul” Media, “Shanatel” Radio, “Al Iraqiya” TV  and “Al Sabah” newspaper.

Trainer Boulos who spent years as an executive at the international advertising agency Leo Burnett and LBCI TV, founded his own consulting company, “Square One” and doubles as Middle East/North Africa business development director of “Drive Communication.”