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Diversity of Minds in Cross-Training Editorial Staff: A Guinea Pig’s Perspective

Abstract

Cross-training can be viewed as a scary concept, with implementation often causing hesitation. Either an employee is comfortable in their job tasks and unlikely to volunteer to take on increasing duties—“clock in and out” as the saying goes—or the employer overburdens workers to avoid hiring additional, necessary staff. However, with the right people, the right attitude, and the right approach, this need not be the case. Take my experience in cross-training with the editorial offices of the American Heart Association, for instance. As Editorial Assistant at Circulation Research, I regularly handled processing new manuscript submissions, sending decision letters to authors, and was trained on contacting potential reviewers. Though originally siloed, expanding portfolios necessitated cross-training between a few of the journals in the AHA. Promotions, vacations, and newly open positions also left work piling up. All hands were needed to keep the wheels turning and, over the course of a year, I was given the opportunity to begin assisting Stroke, Circulation: Quality and Outcomes, Circulation: Heart Failure, Circulation: Cardiovascular Imaging, and Circulation: Cardiovascular Interventions. More than familiar with the shared web platform through my position at Circulation Research, I could easily assist from my home office during these lags. I had to find a balance between bringing my experience to the table and being open to learning from what was there. There’s an idea that the scientific journals are similar enough, especially within an organization; if you’ve worked on one, you’ve practically done them all. Yet it became clear that each […]

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