I reckon’ there has been an easier time to work in Christian radio. But there may have never been a more important time.
But, gosh, it’s tough sometimes.
How do we talk about it?
We know what our format is NOT. We’re not about dividing people. We’re not about stirring up controversy. We’re not about drawing attention with alarming BREAKING NEWS alerts. We know that we should be a unifier of people of faith.
But, gosh, it’s tough sometimes.
But you know what? I’ve heard some remarkable radio this past week. I’ve heard honesty. I’ve heard compassion. I’ve heard self-reflection of our own thoughts, behaviors, and prejudices.
If you truly want to be a great air talent, be a Roomba. (Yes, the little robot vacuum cleaner.) Always be looking for “dust” – things you can do better, in radio terms. Be honest about your work. Listen to yourself like it’s someone else. What would your critique of that person be?
Team shows actually have an advantage, because everyone on the show can be on the lookout. If you trust each other and set egos aside, you can improve twice as fast!
Memorial Day is often considered the official kick off of summer. But more importantly it is a time set aside to remember those who gave their lives for our country.
This time of remembrance is a good time for us to reflect on how we’d like our radio stations remembered.
We get a glimpse of this each year as we compile the Station of the Year entry for Christian Music Broadcasters. It forces us to stop our day-to-day busyness and ponder the most noteworthy things of the preceding twelve months. We discover some things stand out, other things are vapor in the wind.
When people talk about your radio station do they speak of the 25-minute music sweeps with fewer commercials, or do they talk about how you help people help people?
Do they talk about how Jack and Jill read “This day in history” from Twitter every morning at 7:20, or that your station cheers on moms and dads for the most important commitment they’ll ever make – raising good kids?
In well over 20 years of coaching so far, I’ve worked with a lot of incredibly good air talents – some to refresh and regroup so they can STAY great; others to simply help them grow even more.
The flip side of that is working with people in the earliest stages of their careers. And it seems like the “newbies” all start with the same question, “What’s the secret?”
Here it is: be WORTH listening to. Whatever your subject matter is, whatever you say has to make some sort of impact. Not necessarily big, huge, dramatic impact. Simply being perceived as someone who’s actually talking to me, rather than just “a voice saying words.”
That sounds easy, but it’s a daunting task for a young talent. It’s not about your voice. It’s not about being “funny,” per se. It’s just about being PRESENT, in THIS moment, every time the mic opens. Every… single… time.
The minute you turn in a half-hearted effort, you deserve to lose listeners.
This pandemic is so darn inconvenient.
We’ve designed our radio stations to do specific things at specific times. It’s so automatic that we hardly even think about doing something different.
But life is now different. Perhaps you’ve noticed.
What do your listeners need from you during morning drive and afternoon drive when they are no longer driving to and from work?
What do your listeners need from you during the day when life at the office is now stay at home and home schooling their kids?