Lee Harvey Oswald And Your Radio Station
August 23, 2013
By John Frost
Goodratings Strategic Service
The ratings are down! What happened?
The ratings are up! What happened?
Fundraiser didn't go well! What did we do wrong?
Beat our goal by 25%! What did we do right?
Our minds crave simplicity. Easy answers. Quick explanations. We're eager to jump to a conclusion when we lack information.
Notice how during a slump everyone becomes an expert. Our neighbor's sister's daughter's mother's veterinarian says she doesn't listen to the morning show anymore. Despite years and years of success our mind whispers, "I wonder if they've lost it."
You're not playing enough country. You're playing too much country. The station is too soft. The station is too hard. If you play one more Chris Tomlin song I think I'm going to scream. In a hitting streak we wouldn't give it the time of day. In a slump we wonder if there's something to it.
At the Willow Creek Leadership conference recently Dr. Henry Cloud shared how the brain begins to change when we're in circumstances we feel are beyond our control, like a ratings slump or a fundraiser that mysteriously missed its mark.
Three things can happen:
- Personal. It's YOUR fault. You blame yourself and get stuck in searching for real solutions.
- Pervasive. You transfer that negative filter from a specific circumstance to 'everything is bad'. This distracts you from the real problem to solve.
- Permanent. It will always be this way.
Our minds crave simplicity. Easy answers. When we lack information we fill the void ourselves. (That's one of the reasons why conspiracy theories are so popular.) *
As you search for real solutions to the challenges you face at your radio station consider a helpful technique called, "the spotlight effect".
"We are quick to jump to conclusions because we give too much weight to the information that is right in front of us, while failing to consider the information that's just offstage. It's called "the spotlight effect." The spotlight only lights one spot. Everything outside it is obscured. When we begin to shift the spotlight from side to side the situation starts to look very different. And that, in essence, is the core difficulty in decision making. What's in the spotlight will rarely be everything we need to make a good decision, but we won't always remember to shift the light. Sometimes, in fact, we'll forget there's a spotlight at all, dwelling so long in the tiny circle of light that we forget there's a broader landscape beyond it." Chip and Dan Heath, "Decisive: How to Make Better Choices in Life and Work"
* "Researchers have noted that (conspiracy theories) arise when people are grappling with unexpected events, as as when the young and attractive die suddenly. There are conspiracy theories about the sudden deaths of JFK, Marilyn Monroe, Elvis, and Kurt Cobain. There tends to be less conspiratorial interest in the sudden deaths of ninety-year-olds." "Made to Stick" Chip and Dan Heath