I’m really excited today to announce that I’ve just hired Georgina Laidlaw to help with content development and strategy here at ProBlogger. Her official title is Content Manager.
Over the last year, I’ve become increasingly aware that I need to begin to expand my team to cope with the load of running my business.
ProBlogger itself can be a handful to run at times, but add into the mix my biggest blog — Digital Photography School — and other projects (TwiTip, ProBlogger.com, Third Tribe, a Book), plus the other bits and pieces that I do, and I’m increasingly finding myself up against it to get everything done to the level of quality that I wanted.
As a result I’ve begun to look at making a couple of strategic hires to enable me to increase the quality of what I do and also to free up some time for other projects that are coming.
I’d already moved some way down the path of hiring people to help carry the load previously (although I haven’t really written much about it):
- Lara Kulpa will be familiar to some of you as she’s helped with some of the admin tasks here on ProBlogger (comment moderation and other admin), and has managed the ProBlogger.com forums and edited Twitip.
- I also have Simon Pollock (my brother-in-law) managing the community at dPS.
Both are part-time and work remotely (Lara’s in the US and Simon in the UK).
Why a hire a Content Manager?
As mentioned in yesterday’s video, content is of primary importance to me and it’s something that I obsess over. It has been central in whatever success I’ve had, and I see it as extremely important going forward.
For the first four years of ProBlogger’s existence, I wrote almost every post. The only times I really handed over posting to others was when I took vacations. However, in time I began to accept guest posts and have even hired semi-regular writers.
I did this partly to lighten the load a little (to allow me to focus upon other aspects of the business), but also because I found that by including the voices, views, skills and experiences of others, the site became more useful to more people. I can take one approach to blogging and have certain skills, but I lack other areas of expertise.
As a result of this increased featuring of others on ProBlogger, a number of things happened:
- I started getting more submissions for guest posts. When you feature one guest, post you can open a floodgate for others to approach you about writing. There have been weeks when I’ve fielded 20-30 guest post submissions (and I usually only feature two or three).
- I found myself working more on editing than writing. This shift has happened on all of my blogs. While having others write for you takes a load off your writing work, it means you spend more time editing their work, talking to authors about topics, liaising with authors about post formatting, and so on.
All in all, I’ve increasingly felt sidetracked by these tasks. They’ve taken me away from my own writing, but also from more strategic tasks (such as developing a more thought-through editorial calendar, building my community, and developing other projects).
Managing writers is important, but editing and managing writers isn’t my strength and it has become increasingly apparent that it would be logical to get some help in this area.
Georgina Laidlaw has come recommended to me from a number of people that I respect. She’s worked for some great sites such as Melbourne’s SitePoint (who I’m increasingly working with) and WebWorkerDaily.
As part of the process of this hire, Georgina has also written a number of posts here on ProBlogger. Her work received a lot of positive feedback and it demonstrated to me that she “gets” what I’m on about here, and has the ability to connect with the ProBlogger audience. She’s also fast, efficient, and just in the process of sorting out this position has given me some great ideas.
Georgina is also local to me. While I’ve worked with remote workers before there’s something that appeals to me about hiring someone local. Georgina and I won’t spend a lot of time in person, but having the ability to get together and knowing she’s in my timezone will be great.
What does a Content Manager do?
To be honest we’ve ummmed and aaahed about the title Content Manager quite a bit. I’m not sure it is completely accurate, but for now, it’ll do.
Georgina will be taking on a number of rolls here at ProBlogger including overseeing, editing and managing writers (guest posters and regular writers), writing some posts of her own, editing my posts (I know that will please some of my more spelling-obsessed readers), and working on some other projects (for example ebooks, newsletters, and others).
One of the goals that we also have with this new position is to widen the topics that we write about. There are some categories and topics that haven’t been touched on a lot lately here on ProBlogger. Having Georgina on the team will enable us reengage with some of those topics. This will also mean a slight increase in the number of posts each week (don’t worry we’re not going to go over the top).
What about Darren?
A number of people on Twitter yesterday asked me whether this means I won’t be blogging as much on ProBlogger. The answer to that is I’ll still be here as normal. This is my blog and you’ll continue to get regular posts from me.
You might see a slight increase in posts by others, but I intend to maintain my own posting levels (currently around four or five posts a week).
All in all I’m really excited about this development and hope you’ll join me in welcoming Georgina into the ProBlogger family.
That great. Hopefully you will have enough time to be more active as of now :)
Welcome, Georgina. I’ve enjoyed your previous posts here and hope you’ll still have time to post now and again despite your new role.
This seems like a brilliant move, really, and it’s one we can all learn from as we grow. I don’t get nearly as many guest posts (2-3 per week is average) but even at my level there is often a good deal of work involved in choosing the best ones, editing, etc.
Best wishes to you.
Sounds like an exciting change and I’m looking forward of to even more problogger posts. I’m glad you were able to pinpoint those aspects of running these blogs that you don’t enjoy as much and are outsourcing them. It’s not always an easy step to make, but will free you up to do what you are really good at (and have a bit of a life outside of blogging as well).
Wow!! Problogger is growing by the day. Keep working on your strengths Darren. Delegating duties is a welcome idea. This helps you to focus on the areas you’re really passionate about.
Welcome onboard Georgina.
Welcome, Georgina. Sounds like you’re a fabulous fit. Kudos to you, Darren, for seeing where you need help and making the call to ask for that help (sometimes delegating is the most difficult of things!). Best wishes to both of you for successful teamwork!
Congrats Georgina! Happy for you.
ProBlogger The Magazine! A monthly glossy? I’d subscribe.
Good. I hope Georgina keeps quality of guest posts as her first objective. I love your posts Darren and come in every time I think it’s you that has posted (the post titles are usually a giveaway). When it’s other people I’ve learnt that it’s not always worth it. I understand why you want guest writers, but your regular readers don’t want other people unless they can reach your quality – which some do. But not many.
So, welcome Georgina – oh, and do watch out for Darren’s apostrophes (or rather lack of them). Yeah, yeah, OK, all right – I’m one of the spelling-obsessed ones. But then, what do you expect from an English teacher … :)
Wow. This is great news. Congrats.
Thank you for taking the time to write about the hiring you have done for your site. I currently am looking into hiring others to help lighten the load of my blog so I found this post incredibly useful.
Congrats, Georgina! I know you’ll do an amazing job. Darren, she’ll make a great addition to your team. Good luck to both of you with the new role.
Congrats Darren, and welcome Georgina. This is how businesses evolve and become even better at what they do. You will have more time to focus on areas of the business that will continue to help grow your brand and online presence, which I have to say you have done a remarkable job at so far. Now maybe you won’t have to plan every blog post, and every guest blogger to cover things whilst you are on vacation! I am sure this will enhance your personal life as well.
Welcome Georgina and congrats on taking that next step in the expansion of your business Darren. It’s always good to see what is coming in the horizon for us smaller bloggers.
I think that by having other people work on the minutiae of your site, it can really help you boost the quality as well as think of your blog as a real business (I know Problogger is already a successful business, but I guess I am more talking to myself here).
I look forward to seeing what’s to come in the future with these new changes.
The Underdog Millionaire
This great news! Congratulations Georgina. I am so excited for you.
Your posts have been some of my favorites.
Welcome aboard Georgina! Wishing you tons of success on this venture. Darren is the best and you will be a wonderful addition to the group.
Hey :) Thanks for the warm welcome everyone! I’m very pleased to be here and look forward to getting to know you better in the coming months.
That’s great Darren! Love the blog by the way :)
Darren, I think that having someone help with the day to day activities will free up more time for you to focus on growth and direction.
Sounds like an excellent plan.
A warm welcome from me to Georgina for becoming problogger Content Manager
Welcome Georgina! Sounds like a win-win-win! A win for Georgina, a win for Darren, and a win for US!
Welcome Georgina, what a great opportunity and a creative one at that. Continued success to both you and Darren!
Congrats to you Darren and Welcome Georgina! I’m excited about the new developments here at Problogger and can’t wait to see all the new developments.
Loved this comment –
“So, welcome Georgina – oh, and do watch out for Darren’s apostrophes (or rather lack of them)”
Would love to steal her to watch mine.
(and I was a straight A English major)
This is great news for the individuals and for the business.
It’s so inspiring to see businesses built around the use of the internet flourishing.
All the very best for the future.
Welcome into our world of Problogger.
Looking at it from the inside out will permit you to grow and help Darren. Pierrette & I are happy to have the chance to say “Bienvenue” from Canada.
We are all about Health and the world craves for solutions to problems like Obesity. We would love Problogger to get on the bandwagon for health help all the children of the world.
Thanks so much,
Pierre & Pierrette
Thee Quest For Perfect Health
What an amazing milestone….congratulations Darren and welcome Georgina :-)
Welcome to the team..Iam following Problogger for sometime now..i started blogging only in july…So his artciles have helped me a lot!!
Hey Georgina! Congrats and welcome. Wish I had a content manager as well…. blogging and making all the connections can be a bit overwhelming at times. Takes passion and discipline which I sometimes find I lack! Having someone like you helping to process and move things along is invaluable. Plus just making all the connections is great for your future career as well.
All the best. Looking forward to seeing your magic touch on the blog.
Welcome Georgina to ProBlogger! I hope to see more quality contents in the coming time here :-)
Welcome, Georgina! (Does that mean we can send potential guest posts to you?)
Welcome and congratulations Georgina!
And thank’s for helping Darren!
Quite a big step. Good luck!
Nice to meet you.
I have been planning to write and send some guest posts, but couldn’t find the time to. I’ll keep in ind and get working on it when i have the time. Take care all of you at ProBlogger.
First of all we would like to welcome Georgina in our problogger community.
Darren certainly to expand our business we do need helping hands.
Though you can easily find people on assignment basis but at one point of stage we do need people with whom we can seat and work together.
Nice move and would love to see the effect of this.
You mean you did it all by yourself before?! Problogger, e-mailed to me, is the most important part of my learning curve. More strength to you both.
Sounds like a great change, good luck and keep up the good work.
Welcome Georgina. I’m confident that you’ll do a smashing job as content manager at PB.
What an exciting time for you Darren (and Georgina)! Here’s to movement, growth, new opportunities and bigger dreams :)
I know I’m late, but just noticed you had joined ProBlogger. Congrats Georgina!
Hi Georgina! I remember you from early on in the Sitepoint days. I used to be a Design Team Leader there. My username was Sparkie. Welcome to Problogger. :)))