By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
Results are in from the DMN's "2001 News Management Retreat," and the result is that the News plans to "kick butt" this year.
Seriously. That's a quote. I don't make this stuff up, folks.
Well, that was just one of the "top priorities" that management came up with during its brainstorming sessions. It was at the top of the list, though, noted in this fashion: "Break News (Kick Butt)."
Whoa, kids. What happened to that family newspaper atmosphere? My virgin ears are sizzlin'.
Of course, nothing is funnier than when management types at staid corporations try to "get down with it" by incorporating "totally hep" language into their goals in an effort to relate to the common workers, a.k.a. the "jive turkeys."
But saying that they're going to "kick butt" reminds me of the Will & Grace episode wherein Grace's cohorts laugh at her considering the idea of a threesome. She's offended that they don't see her as sexually adventurous. "I have even been called 'kinky,'" she tells them.
"Honey," Will tells her between giggles, "people who are kinky never use the word, 'kinky.'"
Hint for next time, folks. People who "kick butt" don't kick butt. They whip ass, they fuck people up, they combine previously unmatched words into exciting new ones, as in the declaration, "I am going to ream your tainthole till your ears bleed." (That, by the way, is taken from a New Times Management Goals '01 memo.)
A few other highlights from the priority list, with comment following in parentheses:
· Improve coverage convergence (Aw, heck, we were gonna do that.)
· Suburban/regional coverage implementation (Good idea. See lead story, this column.)
· Reconnect with readers and their needs (Why does that sound dirty?)
· Focus more on high performers (Screw the mediocre!)
· Make sure employees rank first (Celebrate the mediocre!)
Finally, this note from the retreat: "We need to think more like TV or a magazine."
(Insert your own joke here.)