Passing the Torch
Seven years ago, I was invited to join Microwave Journal as editor and manager of business development. I came on board just in time to help the team navigate its way through three disruptive events. The first was the end of the long-standing relationship between the International Microwave Symposium and Horizon House/Microwave Journal as exhibition manager. The second was the start of the great recession. The third event was brought on by shifting attitudes toward print advertising in the age of the internet.
Fortunately, the microwave industry had the resiliency to withstand the recession and the Microwave Journal team was able to maintain and strengthen the loyalty of our readers and advertisers through a renewed commitment to editorial excellence. We took the lead in using social and electronic media by developing webinars, videos and industry-focused enewsletters. By leveraging the various strengths of these diverse mediums, we have greatly improved how we deliver technical content to the high-frequency engineering community.
No longer tied to our responsibilities for managing the IMS exhibition, we turned our resources and attention to the global expansion of our brand by launching a Microwave Journal China print magazine (circulation 10,000) and electronic media in late 2011. As other print magazines shrunk in size and circulation, Microwave Journal’s formula of peer-reviewed, industry driven technical content – written by engineers for engineers – has allowed us to expand and solidify our value to our readers.
Then we did something that I am most proud of. We created EDI CON; an event that applied our well-established editorial standards to an industry driven technical conference and our business principles to an exhibition. The result was an event that truly brought attendees and vendors together. Today, EDI CON is on track to becoming the leading design event of its kind in China. Furthermore, we have developed a model that is scalable and can be replicated in any geographical location that best serves the needs of the industry – vendors and engineers alike.
Over the last couple of years, we have witnessed a shift in how engineers acquire information – from those who are providing content, to how it is delivered. Equally important are the time constraints placed on working engineers to investigate solutions outside their knowledge base to meet both their work challenges and their own professional development needs. This content is increasingly being provided by industry. Timely, relevant information is essential to engineering and commerce, which explains why organizations gaining traction in competitive marketplaces are stacking their marketing decks with technologists. This trend is certainly helping vendors and engineers communicate better.
In a specialized field such as ours, industry provided content is a major source of information guiding engineering and business decisions. Leveraging technical content to influence business brings me to an important announcement. After seven great years at Microwave Journal, I have accepted an opportunity to practice these principles as business development manager with ANSYS. In this position, I will be responsible for identifying and creating business opportunities. In attracting new business, my tool of choice will be the placement of timely and relevant technical content where engineers find such information – i.e., Microwave Journal and EDI CON. I look forward to viewing the industry from a different vantage point, getting closer to where the rubber meets the road, facilitating new networks and helping others understand and utilize the power of the press.
By necessity, Microwave Journal’s editorial focus is devoted to high-frequency engineering. Yet the Journal’s audience needs to be aware of broader eco-systems where microwave products are integrated with technologies from other engineering disciplines. In addition, since hardware development itself extends beyond pure electrical design, engineers also need a working knowledge in areas such as power management, thermal dynamics and material science. In my new role I expect to “get schooled” in broader product development issues and look forward to sharing what I learn through future contributions to Microwave Journal as a consulting editor.
I look forward to my new relationship with Microwave Journal. It has been a great pleasure to serve both readers and advertisers, hopefully to everyone’s satisfaction. Thanks to its superb staff and management and the support of its readers and contributors, Microwave Journal will continue to be one of this industry’s finest institutions and a leading authority on frequency matters. And I’ll see you all around the circuit.