The Four Questions

How do you answer them?


​Jobs have been so scarce in consolidated radio that the thought of picking and choosing where you want to work might seem ludicrous.

But you should be picky. The company you work for does make a difference.

The station you work for — the people you work with every day — It all makes a huge difference.

Rather than feeling grateful that someone is interested in you, take the time to dig a little deeper into the culture you’ll find if you accept the job offer.

These are the four questions you need answered:

  • Is the CEO a human being or someone unapproachable, more concerned with his/her perqs and power than in being the leader of a team purposed with creating the best radio ever heard?
  • Is there a record of growth for the “little guys,” actual proof that hard work and loyalty pay off regardless of job description? Is it who you know or what you do that really counts?

Colleen Barrett started at Southwest Airlines as a secretary, and ended up President. Jim Ziemer began his career at Harley as the freight elevator operator and worked his way up to CEO.

  • Will I get fired and how will I be treated if I do?

Mike Duke, former CEO of Wal-Mart, fired more than 13,000 employees at the same time he accepted more than $19 million in compensation.

At Charles Schwab, on the other hand, all executives took a voluntary pay cut to avoid downsizing during the ‘Great Recession of 2007.’

We all know radio stories about layoffs. Not all radio companies are equally callous. Enough said.

  • Finally, how will the boss react to your mistakes?

There’s a famous story about Tom Watson, the founder of IBM. One of his employees screwed up and it cost the company $10 million. When the employee was summoned to Watson’s office, he expected to be summarily fired. To his surprise, Watson said, “Fire you? I just paid $10 million educating you. Get back to work.”

There are some great radio companies around the world, and some great people running radio stations near you. I know because I’ve worked with many of them.

Before you take the next offer based on how much you’ll be paid or what your title may be, take the time to hear the stories people who have worked there can tell you.

It’ll make all the difference in your future and your happiness at the place you spend most of your life every day.