ICFJ Announces Applications Open for Elevate: Helping News Businesses Thrive Programme

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Sharon Moshavi
President of ICFJ

The International Center for Journalists (ICFJ) has opened applications for its Elevate: Helping News Businesses Thrive Programme. The initiative is a transformative global programme aimed at equipping C-level journalists who manage small and medium-sized media outlets with essential business skills.

Elevate is a “real-life MBA” that offers journalists an opportunity to learn from global business executives and receive funding to take their operations to the next level. The programme is designed to solve challenges that may be preventing media organizations from thriving, offering support in four tracks: Business Strategy, Operations and Finance, Technology and New Media, and Communications and Marketing.

Elevate 2023 builds on the successes and lessons learned from the first group of participants. The programme is virtual and spans nine months, consisting of four phases. It provides participants with invaluable opportunities to learn from experienced business leaders and take their news organizations to the next level.

During the initial eight weeks, the “Knowledge Sprint” phase, participants will attend weekly sessions covering the programme’s four pillars. They will work with experienced mentors to confirm that the issue they brought to be solved is the most crucial for their media outlets. The “Mentorship” phase, where participants will collaborate with their mentors to develop strategies to overcome their identified problems, will follow for five months.

In the final “Grant” phase, participants will be eligible to apply for grant funding to execute their proposed solutions. ICFJ has a maximum of $100,000 available for this stage, and individual proposals must not exceed $25,000.

The programme is designed for C-level executives in small or medium-sized media outlets that have been active for at least two years, have a minimum of two staff members, and at least one active revenue stream. The Elevate program can help overwhelmed C-level executives who lack certain business skills, are struggling to keep up with competition, have poor staff retention rates or no clear career policy, or need assistance with branding.

Elevate can also provide guidance on legal issues, negotiations, and tracking data to inform business decisions. Additionally, the programme can help participants analyze the odds of adding a new partner, venture fund, or even selling their brand or company.

The Elevate programme is a unique opportunity for journalists to develop business skills and take their media outlets to the next level. Interested C-level executives can apply now and commit to up to four hours per week for the first two months and one hour per week for the last six months of the programme.

For more information and to apply, please visit: https://www.icfj.org/elevate.