Program-making experience not essential, says job ad

LONDON — The next leader of the BBC must have “an international mindset,” according to the job ad posted on the U.K. pubcaster’s website Wednesday.

“An international mindset is essential. Experience of operating internationally would be desirable,” stated the job spec for director-general.

Significantly, it makes it clear that Mark Thompson’s successor does not need a background in journalism or program-making, although such qualifications are “desirable.”

Another essential requirement is “an understanding of new platforms and technologies.” “Experience of harnessing these to transform business performance would be valuable,” stated the ad.

Whoever becomes d.g. will be paid less than Thompson because of pressure on public sector wages in the U.K. Without being precise regarding the remuneration package, the ad said the successful candidate will have a salary to “reflect the unique challenge and privilege of leading the BBC,” but no bonus.

Additionally, the next topper “will be able to admit quickly when in the wrong … but stand up to huge pressure without bending when s/he believes that it is right to do so.”

BBC Trust chairman Chris Patten, who will appoint Thompson’s replacement, has said the next director general will require “the wisdom of Aristotle and the striking power of (English soccer player) Wayne Rooney.”

Thompson is to stand down in August. His successor is likely to have been appointed by June.

The BBC’s chief operating officer Caroline Thomson, head of news Helen Boaden and head of vision George Entwistle are among the early favorites.

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