All the Skills and a Sense of Humor

Posted on February 8, 2011


Theres an opening for a morning drive talk host at KTLK-FM/Minneapolis. The Clear Channel station parted ways with Chris Baker last week after a three-year stint.

I’m not really that intrigued about the job opening. What’s interesting about this, as Tom Taylor noted in his Taylor on Radio-Info newsletter, is the want-ad posted by Andrew Lee, Clear Channel’s director of information.

“If you think you’ve got what it takes to propel a morning show into instant relevance in a highly competitive market, if you’ve got compelling and unique takes on the news of the day, if you love digging into and ‘owning’ local stories, if you truly ‘get’ social networking, unique online content, and the value it adds to your show, plus a strong sense of humor to boot” – well, you could be the right candidate.”

Break this ad apart and you have a blueprint to what being an airtalent in 2011.

  • Compelling and unique takes on the news of the day: You can’t just parrot back headlines or factoids and keep your listener’s attention. A host has to provide a viewpoint the listener hasn’t heard before.
  • Digging into and ‘owning’ local stories: Radio’s last true strength is being local. Find ways to be part of your community or succumb to Pandora. The choice is yours.
  • You truly get social networking and unique online content: You can’t be a successful talent today without a strong and well-managed online persona.
  • A strong sense of humor: Listener’s are tuning in for relief from their daily stress. As Heath Ledger’s Joker said so well in The Dark Knight, “why so serious?” (What a cheap excuse to use the picture)

Of course, if you want help building your skills in any of these areas, I know a certain blog author and talent coach who can help.