CNN has been on a roll lately, and a new in-depth report points to Jeff Zucker — the former president and CEO of NBCUniversal who became president of CNN Worldwide in 2013 — as the mastermind of the cable channel’s resurgence.
In a feature running under the headline “How Jeff Zucker Made CNN Great Again,” Variety says of Zucker: “Unlike most cable news network chiefs, he is painstakingly involved with the minutiae of hourly coverage, from producing debates to running the channel’s daily editorial meeting. His leadership style could be best described as a zealous professor of a political theory class, pushing his producers for smarter takes on stories.”
Zucker’s style appears to be producing results. “Under Zucker’s reign, the news network has become the second most-watched cable news channel on TV, ahead of MSNBC and closing the gap with Fox News,” Variety reports. “And during the broadcast coverage block of both the Democratic and Republican conventions, CNN topped its cable rivals and the big-three broadcasters in overall viewers. It averaged 5.5 million viewers a night, ahead of Fox News (4.9 million) and MSNBC (3.6 million), as well as NBC (4.6 million), ABC (3.5 million), and CBS (3.1 million).”
We encourage readers to click on the link near the top of this story to read Variety’s full report, which includes a detailed sitdown interview with Zucker.