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Paul Barbagallo

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The most powerful advice any editor gave me was delivered before my first assignment as a young staff writer for the Lawrence Ledger, a local newspaper in central New Jersey: “Be interested.”

 

That editor’s advice proved prescient. He knew exactly what to say to a young reporter eager to make a mark. "To be any good at this job, or even halfway decent," he said, "you have to be the most interested person in the room." Ever since, his message has defined my life and work as a writer, editor, analyst, researcher, and content strategist. I may not always be the most interesting person in the room (and usually I am not), but you will be hard-pressed to find someone more interested.

 

From that maiden assignment I launched a career in local and regional newspapers, moving to the city desk before finally shifting to political coverage and business reporting. That path took me to Philadelphia, where I immersed myself in the advertising and marketing world as an editor of Target Marketing magazine, and then to Washington, D.C., where I reported on regulation, legislation, and litigation affecting the technology industrywith honors from the National Press Club and Society of Professional Journalists. I spent much of that time as a correspondent for the Bureau of National Affairs (which later became Bloomberg BNA and Bloomberg Law), a role that prepared me to become a deputy team leader for Bloomberg News in New York. In that role I helped lead a team of reporters stretching from New York and Los Angeles to Mexico City and Buenos Aires in daily TMT (telecom, media, and technology) coverage while ​reporting and writing my own pieces and editing those of team members. My business articles have appeared in Bloomberg.com, Bloomberg Businessweek, Bloomberg Markets magazine, and in major dailies in syndication including the Chicago Tribune, Denver Post, and Toronto Star.

In 2017, I harnessed my writing and editing skills, business mind, and deep knowledge of the digital landscape to become a “writer-partner” at Accenture. In this role I collaborated with C-suite leaders and executives of the firm and clients around the globe on original Thought Leadership content, including articles for publication in the Harvard Business Review, MIT Sloan Management Review, Ivey Business Journal, and European Business Review, among other top-tier media outlets, and even books. During my tenure at the firm, I helped conceptualize, research, and write two critically acclaimed business-management books: “Radically Human: How New Technology Is Transforming Business and Shaping Our Future” (2022, Harvard Business Review Press) and “Pivot to the Future: Discovering Value and Creating Growth in a Disrupted World” (2019, PublicAffairs), the later of which was nominated for a Thinkers50 award in the Strategy category. These experiences led me to Gartner and PwC, where I served as a senior editor for the firm’s flagship business-management magazine, strategy+business.

 

Along the journey, my liberal-arts education served me well. I received a B.A. in journalism from Rider University (2001) and an M.A. in Writing from The Johns Hopkins University, where I was named an Outstanding Graduate (2013).

 

Today, I live in the Boston area. I still write to satiate my hunger for knowledge and insight. In 2020, I won an American Society of Business Publication Editors’ Azbee Award of Excellence in the Company Profile category for my Cannabis Business Times cover story, “Dan’s Gambit,” about the Vancouver, Canada-based cannabis producer Tantalus Labs. I blog about the craft of writing and also write about industrial design and horology for various publications and web sites.

 

Through it all, I still want to learn and stay interested.

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