We Proudly Own No Cookie Cutter
Grand Rapids - (616) 633-3770 Indianapolis - (317) 769-0583

The Midweek Motivator – Furlough or Farewell?

Radio on the hinge of time; everything that had been is no longer…but everything that is possible can still become. Sometimes over our lives there are golden stories that capture a golden time. This isn’t one of them. 

If you’re a recently “furloughed” member of group radio, you have our condolence. Just when the industry was conditioning to see massive debt-based cutbacks we get Corona. There are always reasons to toss in the towel, give it up and leave radio. Don’t do it. 

Laws of Reversed Entropy apply to all businesses; requiring that energy and belief must be force-fed to restore confidence and increased order. The absence of these fundamentals leads to disorder, maybe failure. Unlike Newton’s first law, a radio group once in motion, is notguaranteed to stay in motion. With no disrespect to people in mega groups, the following applies to just about anyone who has committed their career to broadcasting. So let’s clear our heads: the virus will, like all pandemics, tail-off and pass to the authors of epidemiology books. 

Mission First: as a leader, if you get the objective and priorities right, even a rookie can outline the strategy. Right now you need to be thinking about May or June, discussing priorities while singularly drawing your post-virus plan. If you leave this to a coalition it will get watered down. The immediate mission ahead overrides everything! That’s why you’re a leader. 

The Rapidity of Recovery Depends on Execution: don’t take a cue from the government! In real life stuff doesn’t happen on command or through a governor’s edict. Inside your group, if your employees don’t get the direction or the why-of-it, execution will likely stall. 

Get Back to Listening: the best leaders in any field listen before shoving-off. Then, they challenge their staff for tweaks and innovations. There’s always a great concept to be uncovered! 

Look at Your Company or Market Cluster As If You Had Just Arrived: I’ve been involved in numerous ownership turnarounds; two of which as an owner in markets we acquired. Once you get locked- in to a rigid set of actions and decisions it’s easy to lose your perspective. In this short-term crisis you have a choice: either lose priority-focus or, make important changes that are overdue, (crisis or not). 

Articulate Your Altered-Mission Clearly and Often: I think it was Burke who said, “All that is necessary for the triumph for evil is for a few good men to do nothing.” Think back to September Eleventh. Our leadership defined the mission, gave it virtue backed by world opinion, then moved decisively. It’s your turn to do the same; be it a single-market cluster or a national group. Between the economically driven state of the largest leveraged groups and regional, privately held companies, the crucial fundamental demand for leadership is the same; only the scope and scale differ. It didn’t require an epidemic to force mega companies’ downsizing; it was already in motion. 

Too many managers feel they must apologize for what they’re paid to do. Don’t be one of them. Leaders exist to lead. Today is a great time begin, or to reload.