Operations Advice from Hearst Magazine’s Gil Maurer

I recently thought about a conversation I had with the former president of Hearst Magazine Division (among other titles), Gil Maurer. From all of his years in the cut-throat magazine industry, one lasting lesson he took away was the value of speed - measuring, revising, and executing with as much velocity as possible. What does that mean? Well, to put it in Gil’s own words: “By emphasizing and achieving organizational speed we will beat our competitors with increasing frequency. We will bring more successful products to market; we will invest less money in doing so because we will identify our losers more quickly. Our margins will improve and morale across the entire organization will improve along with it.”

He also spoke about the importance of making numerous smaller decisions, which are easier to manage, rather then rolling everything up into one large decision. “Five small steps, achieved with speed, even if the second or the third are flawed and must be abandoned, will get you a great deal further than waiting for one large failure. Learn your mistakes fast and early and get them behind you.”

Check out the picture in this post for an artist’s visual representation of what Gil’s talking about. It’s a picture he actually had in his office while at Hearst Magazine. Click here for more advice from Gil. It pertains to the magazine industry, but I think anyone can gain something from his words.