Posted on Tuesday, April 17th 2012 at 03:33 pm
I got my start in radio as a DJ. I was working overnights at the top rated FM station in Albuquerque. I remember the rivalry between the DJ’s and the sales staff. I would hear the DJ’s grumble about the sales people (they were prima Donna’s that didn’t do anything but wine and dine clients, and they made way too much money on the backs of the “talent” (DJ’s). My boss and mentor was Al Baker. He did our morning show and had the smoothest, deepest pipes (voice) I ever heard. He had been at the top stations in the country and even worked at the famed station in New York City that hosted the Beatles on their first tour. I asked him one day about my future. He told me “son, keep your U-Haul packed, in this business you are either moving to a bigger market or moving down, and it will happen every time the book (ratings) comes out”. That wasn’t very appealing so I asked him what else I could do. He told me I could be a sales person. So I made the switch and then heard the grousing from the other side (the DJ’s were ingrates that didn’t appreciate the folks that produced the revenue). This kind of sibling rivalry is common in business and in families. I wonder what it would have been like to be Eli and Peyton Manning? Their father was a great professional quarterback and raised two boys that probably vied for his attention and affection. I can imagine Peyton complaining that Archie favored Eli because he was the baby or Eli complaining that Peyton got more attention because he was older and already a star in high school. But, I bet they didn’t do that very much, they were too busy engaged in healthy competition. Competition made them better and folks can argue about who is better Peyton or Eli, but no one can argue about their success. Competition is good for us as well. It makes us work harder and achieve things that we dreamed about. Competitors appreciate their competition and celebrate the success of their rivals. But, where there is jealousy or covetousness it is toxic. This was true at the radio station I worked at. Even though we were the top station in the market as far as ratings, the working environment was toxic. When our hearts are right we have a team mentality that strives for excellence, relishes competition and rejoices at the success of others. When our hearts are wrong we want the destruction of our rivals and rejoice at their failures. Oh that we would have right hearts.