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November 28, 2014

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09/17/07 How To Reinvigorate Your Radio Career
There are days when I feel the doom and gloom of radio. I hear too often how the industry is not the same anymore, how the good old days were more exciting, how radio consolidators and Wall Street have ruined the business, how its not fun anymore. Its depressing to hear it, and depressing to live it.

Are you one of those people experiencing radio depression? Would you like to reinvigorate your radio career? Here are my tips to pull you out of the doldrums, and make radio fun again.

Change your attitude. If you follow the advice of books like The Secret, you know that your dominant thoughts and expectations worsen your conditions. If you really want to see things differently, start with your own thought patterns.
Inventory your past. When you were really in love with radio, what were you doing that you are not doing now? List all of the things you once loved about the business, and look for ways to replicate them today.
Take a vacation. Get off of the merry-go-round. Stress and pressure kill perspective. Get away for as long as you can. Do something fun. Dont check e-mail, dont call in. Dont listen to the radio.
Learn something new. I attend non-radio events to learn about other industries. Often I apply it to my business life, but I am stimulated by new people, new ideas, and mastery of new skills. I bring these new speakers, ideas, and perspectives to Radio Ink conferences because I find them so refreshing. Just today I learned about a housewife who is generating $60 million a year (this is documented) with a creative online application. Rest assured. she will be invited to speak at our Convergence Internet conference! I got jazzed when I realized any radio station could do the same.
Start a hobby. For me its oil painting. I get lost in it sometimes until 2 a.m.! and find Im not thinking about my work or other pressures. Doing this several nights a week actually makes me less tired, and better prepared once I get to work.
Exercise.
Take a mini-sabbatical. If Bill Gates can do it, you can too. Jerry Lee, one of radios brightest owners, does it every month. When do you ever stop and ponder your business? Of course you dont have time. All the more reason to find the time.
Take time for the fun stuff. I used to be an on-air talent and programmer. When I got into management, I missed those jobs. Find ways to spend time around those people, those roles. Find some play time in the production room.
Make it fun for others. I once appointed a director of fun in my company. Her sole role was to invent incentives, staff bonding events, etc. I once told my staff to wear jeans the following day for a full day of clean-up. When they arrived, I took them all on a fun outing for the day. It showed that I am not all about work.
Accept the things you cannot control, and change the things you can. Radio has tightened its belt, is less focused on talent, and is controlled by Wall Street. Get over it. If there are things you can change in your local station, do so.

I can see people cringing in board rooms. So what. You need to make it fun, or go do something else. It may not be sanctioned from the corporate office, but once they see how productive you and your station become, they may think twice.

Radio was once fun because someone made it that way. Now its your turn.


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