Laura Brown

Just what advice would InStyle editor in chief Laura Brown give to the newly minted editors in chief of Vanity Fair and Glamour, Radhika Jones and Samantha Barry?

“I wouldn’t presume to give advice…” Brown, who took over InStyle in 2016, started out saying, when asked what wisdom she would impart to the duo. The Australian editor was at Skylight Modern on Friday evening for the American Australian Association’s inaugural Australia Day Arts Awards, where she was honored alongside Naomi Watts. “But what I will say, what I would say to anybody starting one of these jobs, is that it takes a lot out of you. There’s a few things I could say: Make a big thing small — I think that’s really important. Don’t be overwhelmed by the scale of what you’ve to do. If you have a good idea, it’s going to find its way and it’s going to magnify in it’s own way.

“What I said to a new editor friend was, ‘Don’t freak out if you don’t go to the gym. Don’t freak out if you drink too much wine. Do what you have to do, and don’t beat yourself up if you’re not hitting a quota,’” Brown continued. “’Get your sleep. Ask for things while you’re still warm.’ Sometimes when you start those jobs you’re still meeting people and you’re there and you know what you’re going to do but sometimes it is intimidating because you don’t understand the company or you don’t understand who to ask for things. So get a measure of that very, very quickly. And if the idea is good enough, it’s going to project. Sam did that great story where she interviewed all the gymnasts — she had her staff do, I think, all of them within her first two weeks, and I thought that was fantastic. Her news sense is extraordinary — we haven’t met yet, but we’re going to have a date. Look, this is a big job and I’m like a Labrador making friends with everybody. It takes a lot out of you — it’s super rewarding, but there is no room for [competition]. We’re traditionally competitors, but we’re really each other’s supporters.”

load comments
blog comments powered by Disqus