PETALING JAYA: Finding and nurturing a diverse group of talents is an integral factor in ensuring Malaysia’s media landscape is able to flourish and expand, say industry leaders.
While once thought of as a largely creative industry, highly skilled workers with backgrounds in computer science, data analytics and other similar technical fields have become just as important in the modern media environment as the content creators themselves.
Speaking during a webinar hosted by Cemerlang titled “Captains of Industry Forum: Growing a Media Empire”, FMT Media’s managing director Azeem Abu Bakar said companies must not stifle emerging stars in their ranks, and should base organisational decisions purely on merit if they want to become major industry players.
“We must have a culture of identifying talent and moving them up. There cannot be a situation where a line manager feels insecure that the subordinate will one day outgrow them. They must want to groom their students to be a lot better than themselves.
“I think we have come to a stage where we need to completely see beyond race, religion, creed and even age.
“If we see a talent who can add value to the company, we must be able to take them in, grow them and treat them fairly.
“If they have that kind of mindset, a company will continuously grow.”
Azeem also emphasised the importance of finding people the right roles and placing them in positions to succeed, which may involve moving them to an area of the company where their skills are better suited.
“Awesome people make awesome companies,” said Media Prima Berhad’s group executive director Rafiq Razali in agreement.
If media companies want their workers to stay loyal and help push the company forward, the management must be clear in “over-communicating” how their work impacts the company and the important role they play within the company.
He also noted the importance of collaboration across the organisation so that no department feels isolated from another.
“Great culture also goes a long way towards ensuring energy levels in an organisation are always high and people are always happy to come to work and continuously do great stuff.”
Azeem also said local media companies must look beyond local competitors and strive to be on par with international players like CNN, BBC and Al Jazeera, as an increasingly educated and discerning readership demands a higher standard of content.
“As Malaysians, we need to have the hunger to be international players.
“We must be able to match the level of thinking of our very educated audience in Malaysia. We need to have a world-class way of producing content so that we fulfil the demands and expectations of the people.”
As local players grow and the standard of content improves, expansion would be the logical next step. Azeem said this would put Malaysian companies on track to become internationally recognised media brands in the future.