The Human Resources team has spent some time speaking to people in roles that require writing as a skill or who hire writers. In this post we discuss career advice and expectations for writers with Meghan Blanchette, a Director of Content and Communications.
Check out our hiring profile posts for other positions as well to gain more tips for succeeding in the work world!
What Skills and Experiences are Must-Haves for a Writer
You need to be a good writer and be able to make other people’s writing better. You also need to be skilled at understanding what people really mean to say, even if it’s not obvious. At the director level, you also need to be able to think strategically and create quarterly/yearly plans that are in service of the company’s goals. As far as experience, working as an editor or project management-type work would help a lot.
Common Interview Questions for a Writer
- How do you get content from people who don’t have time to provide it?
- Talk about a tough situation where clear communication really made a difference.
- Writing or editing tests are common at entry- and mid-level positions.
Abilities and Experiences That Make Writing Candidates Stand Out
- Creating a steady drumbeat of quality content, such as working on company blogs and/or newsletters
- Bylines in known publications (either their own, or having secured taglines for leadership in past positions)
What She Loves Most About Being a Writer
I really enjoy helping people see that creating content (from a LinkedIn post to a longer article) isn’t as scary as it seems. I do a lot of ghostwriting, and through that they learn to be better writers themselves.
What Challenges She Faces Day to Day
Time! Less my own and more the people I need to talk to/get content from. They’re very busy keeping the company running. I’m lucky that my company in particular strongly values content creation and distribution, but not every company is like that.
What Steps She Took to Secure a Job
My degree is in writing, literature and publishing from Emerson College, and I had an editorial internship in college. I then started out as an editorial assistant at a tech publisher and worked my way up, moving to different companies and working freelance across writing, marketing and communications. Networking is hugely important in the writing/editing world—every position I’ve had aside from my first has been because of people I knew.
Possible Job Titles for Writers
|Copywriter||Staff Writer||Technical Writer||Copy Editor|
|Communications Manager||Communications Specialist||Public Relations Specialist||Speechwriter|
|Web Content Writer||Content Strategist||Editor||Journalist|
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