Kim Ekin holds the position of overseeing Editorial and SEO departments at Rugby365, which is part of the world’s biggest rugby fan network. Originally from Australia but now living in the UK, we had a conversation with her to delve into how she navigates the distinctive challenges associated with managing various departments within a sports media outlet.
How do you tackle the task of overseeing numerous teams during the world’s biggest rugby tournament?
The Rugby World Cup stands as the zenith of world rugby, and successfully guiding multiple teams during this period hinges on meticulous planning and clear communication. However, the nature of rugby and any business is often male-dominated, so navigating this extra layer and confronting more traditional outlooks was a challenge.
Regarding managing individuals working remotely, what approaches do you use to guarantee efficient collaboration and productivity?
I like to emphasise consistent communication through virtual meetings and collaborative platforms. Establishing transparent expectations, equipping the team with appropriate tools, and fostering a sense of camaraderie despite the physical distance are crucial elements. The goal is to construct a virtual workspace that feels cohesive, immersive, and productive.
How do you manage within a media enterprise that reports on a sport with a constantly evolving news cycle?
Navigating rugby’s dynamic news cycle entails staying ahead and predicting trends. It demands a proactive stance in SEO and editing, a deep comprehension of the audience, and the swift adjustment of strategies to align with both current and upcoming events. Juggling this aspect of the job with managerial responsibilities can be a challenge, and as a woman, battling preconceptions, building credibility, and maintaining integrity demands a lot of resilience.
As team members travel to France for the tournament, how do you handle the intricacies of overseeing teams and their workloads during a live event?
Effectively overseeing teams during a live event, such as the one in France, requires a high degree of agility. This encompasses pre-event planning to assign responsibilities, maintaining flexibility to adapt to on-the-ground dynamics, and ensuring everyone stays dedicated to their tasks. It’s a fusion of foresight, adaptability, and a collective enthusiasm for a dynamic work environment.
In terms of the former rugby professionals integrated into some of your teams, how do you handle and work collaboratively with these unique team members?
For a lot of these ex-pros who are part of our teams, they have most likely been immersed in the world of rugby since they were in their teens. Their previous managers – i.e. their coaches – have all been men up until they have made the switch to the media industry. So, as you can imagine, this is a new experience for both parties, and it’s important to set up a mutual understanding and respect. Luckily, rugby is a team sport and this is instilled into their mindsets!