The Boxer

A hard slap in the face…

Maybe that would help.


It’s a life-long problem, and not exclusive to those running consolidated radio companies today: None of us know what we don’t know.

Perhaps worse, the older we get the less open we are to even entertaining an opposing opinion.

Our minds are not only biased to believe we’re smarter than we are, they’re closed to any refuting evidence.

As Paul Simon sang in The Boxer, “A man hears what he wants to hear and disregards the rest.

It is the very rare manager — and even more rare company president or CEO — who actively seeks out those who disagree with him/her.

And so, companies stagnate, the uppermost levels filled with ever-narrowing minds attuned to one core belief that may, or may not, be best for the future of their business, or their country.

While there is undoubtedly a smug certitude about each decision, even those that ruin other lives, I honestly don’t think it’s malicious.

Still, despite benign intent, this human predilection for only seeking opinions or facts that confirm our own genius isn’t without huge cost, even for those who remain in power.

Humility is defined as “the quality or state of not thinking you are better than other people.”

We are citizens of a nation that celebrates hubris, that actively punishes humiilty, especially when it comes to other cultures, but I think somehow we must work — for it will be work — to listen to dissenting opinions.

There is more than one way to run a radio company today, even though every big company is following the same blueprint.

I want to hear about the companies actively encouraging dissent, actively seeking and listening to opinions that fly in the face of those they’ve cherished for years.

That’s the company I want to help.