1. All presenters sound the same. The most important thing you can do is find your unique, authentic voice.
2. Every shift is a chance to improve. Being on the air is the best way to fast track your development. Treat every gig with respect.
3. Share your work with people who are better than you. Finding a supportive mentor is the fastest way to improve.
4. Music radio stations are filled with presenters who don’t care about music. Being passionate, authentic and knowledgeable about the songs you play is the easiest way to create a niche for yourself.
5. Edit. Then, edit again. Every link should start with what needs to come out, not what should stay in.
6. Content Directors hire attitude, not talent.
7. All good programmers share roughly the same knowledge on radio talent. Great programmers stand out because of their ability to manage people and lead their teams.
8. Communication with your team is like an on-air campaign. To have something genuinely cut through you need frequency and creativity.
9. Programming great shows is about releasing potential, not stifling it. Start by hiring really interesting people, then set them going. They will interpret your vision better than you could imagine.
10. The best performers are defined by what they don’t do. They zig when others zag. Radio rules are meant to be broken. Hire people who have the talent and the courage to do something different.
11. Being a Content Director is like being the conductor of the orchestra. You set the tone and the rhythm of the band. Remember that everyone is looking at you for their cue.
12. There is no right or wrong in radio. It’s just individual interpretation. The most successful Content Directors learn to craft their own sound and game plan.
13. The Content Director has the game plan. Update it at the start of every week with what you’re doing to make your station better.
14. Radio is a team sport. The best shows are always the best teams. The primary function of the Content Director is to help create and promote those environments.
15. Helping people understand their unique talent is the key to programming… and management… and personal success. Your teams will grow faster, learn more and work harder when they’re playing to their strengths.
16. Anticipation is everything. Christmas is the greatest anticipation campaign ever. Use your airtime to create excitement around your upcoming events.
17. Every great show has a unique expression. Fun, relatable, local breakfast shows are a dime a dozen. If you’re using these words to describe your show, it’s officially wallpaper.
18. Promo airtime is the most valuable tool you have to create a unique position for your station.
19. Find the person who is the benchmark of your area of expertise and copy their work ethic.
20. No one will care as much about your career as you do. Be proactive. Ask for what you want. Educate yourself and make sure you’re ready for when the next opportunity arises.
21. Engage. Speak up. Ask questions. Push back. Get involved. If you’re in the conversation, then you’re in the game.
22. Reputation is everything. (Your identity is how you see yourself, your reputation is how others perceive you.) Every interaction on the air and off the air will contribute to getting your next promotion.
23. Someone important is going to tell you “you suck” at some point in your career. They’re probably wrong.
24. Understand that you are creating a personal brand. A brand is a promise; it’s an expectation of an experience. What do your peers and potential managers expect from you?
25. One day you’ll be me. Seems like yesterday when I was the eighteen year-old newbie with no clue. Create your own lessons and write your own rule book.