Office Hours: I am the Editorial Director at Prezi. I’m Lorraine Lee. AMA!Featured

Hi Elphas!

Nice to meet you all. My name is Lorraine and I’m passionate about helping professionals accelerate their careers and stand out in the virtual office. I’m really excited to join the Elpha community and answer all your questions this Friday!

A bit about me: I come from a journalism background and have been fortunate enough to build a career at the intersection of editorial and tech. I was Prezi’s first editorial hire, and I currently lead the editorial function as Editorial Director. Many of you may remember Prezi from your college days.

Since then, we’ve gotten bigger and better and I’ve had the chance to work with keynote speakers, influencers, and subject-matter experts on creating engaging presentations for both in-person and virtual audiences (the latter uses our Prezi Video product) that my team curates and features across our various channels (if you make presentations often and want to learn more, don’t hesitate to reach out to me on LinkedIn!).

Throughout my career, I’ve worked on and led editorial teams at other tech companies including SlideShare and LinkedIn. Since joining Prezi, I’ve also had the chance to become a top-rated virtual speaker, LinkedIn Learning Instructor (“Virtual and Hybrid Meeting Essentials” with another course on the way!), gotten quoted in and my articles published in publications like Entrepreneur, and so much more than I would have ever dreamed possible! I’m also a proud lead for the Women@Prezi ERG. I’d love to share the lessons I’ve learned along the way with you all.

Outside of work, I can be found doing muay thai, taking singing lessons, practicing French, and eating my way through San Francisco.

PS: For those with a journalism background, I’m part of this awesome organization called Digital Women Leaders where you can continue to get advice from others like me after the AMA.

Ask me anything about:

  • Becoming a virtual keynote speaker
  • Creating engaging (virtual) presentations
  • Designing and facilitating impactful virtual and hybrid meetings
  • Growing your presence and brand on LinkedIn (I’ve built an audience of more than 300,000 followers)
  • Being a first-time manager (I became a manager in 2019 when I joined Prezi, and managed unofficially while at LinkedIn)
  • The best ways to give feedback
  • And more!

For quick, actionable insights to accelerate your career and stand out in the virtual office, subscribe to my newsletter:

Thanks so much for joining us @lorraineklee!Elphas – please ask @lorraineklee your questions before Friday, October 28th. @lorraineklee may not have time to answer every questions, so emoji upvote your favorites 🔥👍🏾➕
This was fun! Thanks so much for having me, and what a wonderful breadth of questions. :)
Thank you for making the time for this, Lorraine! I'd love to learn more about what it means to be an Editorial Director at Prezi. What does your day-to-day look like? (or week-to-week if that's a better time frame! :) ) And how does it differ from the other editorial roles you've held?
That is awesome, Lorraine! Thanks for sharing this with us.
Hello! What a great background and skillset you have. On the topic of Designing and facilitating impactful virtual and hybrid meetings: I'm interested finding the specific visual and verbal cues that establish a particular atmosphere for an online meeting. I lead many and participate in even more; I'm always curious about this!
Thanks so much, Julie! This is what I would suggest:-Start off your meetings with an energizer question (something other than "how are you?"). Energizer questions break people out of autopilot and also are a great way for your team to get to know each other. A few examples of questions that have worked well for me in the past ("What's your go-to weekday meal?" "What sport would you play in the upcoming Olympics?" "What color represents you?" "Where do you most want to visit?")-Show your agenda + goal for the meeting - let people know what's coming up and how much time you'll spend on each item (this will help create a productive vibe right off the bat and show others you've come prepared).-As for visuals, I have to shout-out Prezi Video here. :) I think you would enjoy the visual component. You are able to bring visuals on-screen with you and add text/images/stickers/GIFs in real-time. Very fun and also keeps everyone on track. Here's an example of what I mean: you have defined rules of engagement at the start - how do you want people to participate? Chat? Raised hands? Establishing this up front makes a world of difference in showing inclusivity and making sure the introverts get a chance to contribute as well.I'd also encourage you to check out my LinkedIn Learning course which covers some of the tips I shared above and goes into a bit more detail (and follow/connect with me on LinkedIn if you want to get notified about my next nanolearning course coming out likely next month, also on the topic of meetings). Hope this helps! Thanks for the question.
Hi Lorraine! It's wonderful to see you here! On the topic of feedback, do you ever experience feedback fatigue (as an editor who gives it)? Do you have any advice for giving quick and effective feedback? Or any literature you recommend for this? And on the spectrum of feedback, do you have any tips for kindly rejecting submissions?
Hi Tonia! Thanks for the great question. I don't experience feedback fatigue, although that's not to say I don't feel uncomfortable when I'm sharing constructive feedback. I'm big on not having anything be a surprise during reviews, so one thing I've done that has worked well is I've set up monthly feedback sessions with each of my teammates so we can share feedback both ways. This might be something that could work well for you if you feel like you're sharing a lot of feedback throughout the weeks at random times. A dedicated time could help both of you gather your thoughts and come ready to the feedback exchange meeting knowing what will be discussed.My tips for giving quick and effective feedback:-I like to ask how my team likes to receive feedback (written or verbal). I would suggest you invite both you and your team to take part in creating ReadMes, aka "personal operating manuals." We recently expanded this activity beyond our immediate team to encompass all of marketing, and it was really helpful for me to understand how each person likes receiving feedback. Here's mine if you'd like to take a look (it's a bit long :) so feel free to scroll down to relevant section!"Radical Candor" is always a classic when it comes to giving feedback!-Always tie your feedback to an action or something concrete; don't link it to emotion or feeling. It will be received much better and also leave less room for misinterpretation.-Make it collaborative - share your feedback (and perhaps even some of your own experiences if you've learned from a similar experience) and then ask this person to come up with some ideas/actions they can take to avoid experiencing this issue in the future.By rejecting submissions, do you mean how to reject feedback? I think some of my tips in this LinkedIn post I made a few weeks back on how to receive feedback will be helpful! The one I would call out is: You don't have to necessarily act on the feedback, but it's important to remember it takes that person bravery and care to share it with you. Say thanks. Here's the post if you want to dive in further:-How to receive feedback:
How do you determine and organize your content strategy for Linkedin? It always seems that there are tons of different things to write about, but how do you determine if topics are both interesting but also not so haphazard that they don't make sense as a collection? Any tools/templates/structures you use?
Hi, @alexnuth! You're right - there is SO much that can be written and a lot of it is experimentation to see what resonates with your audience.I would recommend:-Use LinkedIn polls! Ask your audience what topics interest them most. Ask them what time they are typically on LinkedIn. Merge those together to start posting about the popular topics at the best times for your audience. :) Typically T, W, Th are best for posting for the every day professional but this can be completely different based on who you're trying to reach. It may take a bit of trial and error to see when you see engagement.-Come up with your personal brand mission/vision. What is one sentence that would describe what you're passionate about and what you talk about? Make sure all your topics align to that specific mission (and add it to your headline if you haven't already!).-This course by my friend and fellow LinkedIn Learning Instructor Salina just came out that may be helpful to you: -Don't forget it's not just about you posting, but about you commenting on other people's posts. The LinkedIn algorithm favors conversation, and this means you want more people commenting on your post to keep it visible in the feed (and of course you should respond, too), and you *also* should comment on other people's posts. Doing so not only helps you in the algo but also can lead to some interesting and helpful connections who are in a similar space to you or who want to learn more about the topics you speak on.-Lastly, schedule your posts ahead of time. I usually sit down on Sundays and schedule a few posts per week. I use the scheduler Taplio but there are tons of others out there like Sprout Social, Hootsuite, etc!
Hello @lorraineklee! Thank you for doing an AMA. I really love Prezi, ever since I had a high school teacher use it. It's so much more dynamic than powerpoint, and I'm not sure why more people don't use it in a business context (at least in my orbit). I am curious about designing impactful presentations especially in a virtual context. How do you keep people focused on the message and tangible outcomes after a presentation? Are there strategies to get people to really think about the message you're trying to deliver after the presentation is over? Just for fun, here is the last Prezi I made to celebrate IWD at my company: you for your time! Alex
Hi @alexandralatter - So awesome you are a Prezi fan. :) Thank you for sharing the Prezi, too. We do a IWD series each year so I would love to feature your content or something else of yours in the future. Feel free to shoot me a note at [email protected] if you want to learn more.As for impactful presentations, there are a few things I emphasize:-In the virtual world, we need to create experiences. Let's get rid of the screen share. We need to create content that captures attention and showing our face is a big part of that. This will help people remember your content and stay engaged *while* watching it which is an important first step. If you haven't tried Prezi Video yet, highly recommend (its' included with your Prezi account)! It's helped me stand out so much during webinars and other presentations I've had to do.-Within the presentation, include recaps after each section. Especially if your presentation is longer, you'll want to do this more often. Your presentation can be really great but if there's a ton of content people are only seeing for the first time, it will be hard to retain everything. Try to group everything you're sharing into 3s to help people remember.-Send an async/recorded video ahead of the presentation to give a bit of context. In the virtual world, you have to repeat things multiple times (some say at least 7x!) given all the distractions we have and different things pulling our attention.-If possible at the end of your presentation, ask everyone to share one takeaway or question. Make sure they're involved and interacting throughout and it's not just a one-way presentation where you are talking *at* them.-And send a recap video. :)
Hi there - I have a journalism background and have spent my last few years in tech marketing. I was recently laid off, and I'm finding it hard to convince hiring managers that a journalism background can be an asset. It took me a long time to get in the tech marketing door in the first place, even though I have a lot of valuable experience with big media names on my resume. Do you have any advice on how I can translate or advocate for my background effectively?
Hi @KristiO - I'm so sorry to hear about your recent layoff. If you'd like, I can definitely keep an eye out for you, just add me on LinkedIn. :) What types of roles are you applying for? I have found that the content roles that I have seen out there for tech companies typically favor a journalism degree. If they are hesitant, I would share this:-Journalists have excellent communication skills; in a virtual setup, this is so crucial to ensuring smooth collaboration and productivity. I think being able to write well can't be underestimated, particularly in today's day and age. -Journalists are great at asking the right questions-Journalists are curious - and welcome learning about other functions and orgs-Journalists know how to work quickly and on deadline-I'd also ask whether your resume is "personalized" enough — meaning are you including data and metrics that are important to the role you're applying for? Sometimes it means getting creative with how you present your background, especially if tech companies are having a difficult time understanding how past experience can be beneficial in a future role.I would also revisit what roles/companies you're looking at. Do you have LinkedIn job alerts turned on? What are the roles you're searching for? Is your headline up-to-date with the right keywords to attract the opps you want? (Feel free to send this info to me on LinkedIn). Hope this is a helpful start, and as you can see by all my questions, a few more details would help me help you more. :)
Thank you so much, Lorraine! These are incredibly helpful questions. I just added you on LinkedIn and will send you a message there. I think the biggest thing I've found is that they want me to still have marketing experience and examples in interviews (tell me about how you think about product marketing, tell me about a time when you did X in marketing) and my examples are not as robust because I have worked in marketing for a shorter time than journalism.
Looking forward to continuing the convo on LinkedIn! It sounds like it might be worth coming up with a case study you do on your own as an example to include in your portfolio, or it may just require a few tweaks for how you might connect your journalism experience to what they're asking for. Just b/c it's not called product marketing in journalism doesn't mean you can't pull some key learnings and projects and adjust accordingly. :)