Corner Office: Editor Ascendant: Michael Pietsch
A CEO with an editorial background is somewhat unusual, isn't it? Will that make you a different kind of CEO?
I hope that having a CEO who has been a publisher and editor makes it instantly clear that writers are the most important part of a publishing company. Putting someone in charge who has worked directly with writers makes sense as it grows daily more imperative that publishers partner closely with writers and make clear all the complexity of the business.
How are you handling the transition? How would you describe your management style?
David Young remains CEO through March 30 and during the transition I am taking the opportunity to learn everything I can from him about the company as a whole and about managing the many aspects of the business. I try to be both an enthusiastic manager and an orderly one—I love creating systems and processes that help everyone function well almost as much as I love supporting and championing publishers and editors in their passion for individual books.
Can you share some of what you hope to accomplish in your new role?
1. To make Hachette Book Group even more a favorite destination for authors and agents, a place that is built around the author's experience, featuring editors who really edit, marketers who know their stuff, and state-of-the-art publishing support systems.
2. Marketing. HBG already has the highest ratio of bestsellers to titles published in the industry and I want to expand its tradition as a place that really gets its books noticed, using every tool of modern publicity, social media, advertising, and partnering closely with booksellers, bloggers, librarians and other industry booklovers.