After The Cuts -- An Open Letter
November 7, 2008 at 7:27 AM (PT)
The following letter from veteran radio broadcaster BILL FIGENSHU arrived this morning. I read it several times, and realized that it encompassed and addressed my personal feelings, and that of the ALL ACCESS staff perfectly. I felt compelled to share it with you, in the hope that its positive message would resonate with everyone, and help spawn thinking and discussion, which would lead to and create some much-needed, positive changes in radio.
With BILL's permission, "After The Cuts -- An Open Letter"
I believe you will see a continuation of a contraction in the radio business. It WILL get smaller in staff size and if we are not careful, listener size.
The events of the last few days have made me proud to be an American. Believe me, I'm not one of those "real vs. fake" Americans who were created in the presidential campaign; I just think we are all so fortunate to live in a country as wonderful as this. No matter who you voted for, you had to get a bit misty-eyed watching history unfold before us in Chicago and New York, and on the streets and cities in the U.S. and around the world.
I am also proud to be a broadcaster, and yes, an American broadcaster. The amazing pictures of the throngs of people truly excited to see the change from the long, dark night that defined the last few years got me to thinking, I can't remember a time when the streets were filled with people after an election ... mostly young people ... mostly young people excited and hopeful for the future of the country they want it to be. One can't help but be inspired.
Is it possible that we can exhibit the same leadership and inspiration in the radio business that we saw on TV and heard on the radio from President-elect Obama? Is it possible for us to re-think the entire radio industry and move beyond the cuts? I believe it's fair to suggest that the past few years have not been radio's best. There has been much written about it, so I won't go into the past by fingerpointing as to the blame.
There is plenty to go around.
Is it possible for us to realize that for radio to succeed in attracting future generations of listeners, we must fundamentally change our whole way of thinking about the way we program, sell, engineer, market, finance and LEAD the next generation of radio staff, advertisers and listeners? In the next 12 months, I believe you will see a continuation of a contraction in the radio business. It WILL get smaller in staff size AND IF WE ARE NOT CAREFUL, listener size.
What will radio look like ... AFTER THE CUTS?
To read the rest of this open letter, please, click here.