life

I haven’t posted since May.  A lot has happened since then.  Some good and some bad.  My heart went into Afib in flutter and I had an ablation in September.  I have dropped fifty pounds and have developed a healthy diet.  I still deal with heart and digestive issues.  I usually see a different doctor every week.  I feel like I am a full time patient but let’s be honest:  I lived life in the fast lane and there is a high probability that all of this was self inflicted.

I’ve had a lot of time to think and reflect on who I am today and where I was in the past.  I moved fast.  I missed a lot.  I see it now and hope that it’s not too late.  I was caught up in things and situations that truly don’t matter.  The expensive jeans.  The VIP rooms.  The over the top dinners.  The list goes on.  You may feel important or satisfied at that moment but it’s only temporary.  In the end, there is no dinner, no rare bottle of wine or some flashy name brand that can provide you with what we should all truly be seeking:  a purpose.

I’m fifty five years old, an only child, divorced and no kids.  What is my purpose?  I’m not sure but I’m now motivated to find it.  Can you say the same?

Xmas musicI tell the truth.  Many people tell ya what ya “wanna hear” and I’ll tell ya the truth again….I don’t like those people.  They won’t support you in your time of need, they aren’t truly your friend and they are only in life for their own personal gain and benefit.

During the past couple of weeks some of you have asked “Why do some radio stations switch to all Christmas music weeks before the actual holiday.”  From an industry standpoint I should shut my mouth and not be honest with you but that is not what I am about.  Is it because they are so into the holiday spirit they can’t resist changing the playlist to feature nothing but holiday classics?  Pardon me while I roll on the floor at the absurdity of that claim.  The truth?  To manipulate the ratings system.

Usually the station or stations that make this move aren’t doing well in the ratings.  The switch to all holiday music a month and a half before Xmas increases their listenership, helps them for about 45 days in the ratings, gives them a temporary boost, then the station uses those results to increase their advertising rates afterwards until their ratings drop and return to normal.  Now don’t get me wrong.  From a business standpoint it’s a great idea but if they are telling you the reason is because “it’s time to get into the season” that’s what I refer to as a “Cleveland steamer.”  To further insure maximum revenue in switching to all holiday music the station may also have this feature “sponsored” by a client.  Why?  You guessed it…..all about the almighty dollar.

I hope this clarifies your question and that you all have a wonderful holiday.  Please wait a while before asking me why so many stations like to feature a “Song of the Day.”

bad bossI have been told that I am “headstrong.”  The same person  also told me that potential employers don’t like that in an employee and I should “tone it down.”  What am I twelve and standing up on a moving school bus during a freaking field trip?  I am headstrong and I like headstrong people.

I respect people in authority but I’m not gonna nod my head in agreement about something I don’t agree with or think there may be a better option.  I believe a truly great boss surrounds him or herself with headstrong people.  You wanna be king of the jungle not just a herdsman of some dumb sheep.

I have actually been required to attend team building seminars where we threw around bean bags and balloons and were told “there are no bad ideas in brainstorming.”   Uh….yes there ARE bad ideas in brainstorming Mr. Einstein.  Doesn’t anyone remember “New Coke” or “Crystal Pepsi?”  If it’s a bad idea you are going to get bad results.   It seems that people SAY  they want honesty right up until it’s something that they don’t agree with.  How about this for honesty:  If you need to force your employees to play with balloons and bean bags to increase office morale….you are running a daycare and not a business.

I have always learned the most from people I disagreed with.  It forces you to think in a different direction.  I’m not saying that everyone I have disagreed with has taught me something because I’ll be honest again:  There are a LOT of stupid people in this world.  I don’t think that’s an opinion because I live in Florida and that pretty much is a statement of fact.

I will never say “what you wanna hear” but I will say “how I feel.”  If more people did this on a daily basis then we would be a much more productive society.  Again…this is just my opinion.  Maybe I’m just being headstrong.

 

Danny Czekalinski hosts a weekly LIVE internet radio show called DANNYLAND on mysourceradio.com    Listen to it Thursday mornings at 9AM EST or check out the show archives HERE

ClownBoss1Meetings.  I really believe we have too many.  Meeting to prepare for meetings make me crazy.  Don’t get me wrong I value the importance of a meeting that is truly needed but some of the stuff that comes out of a meeting leaves me more confused and detached than before the meeting.  Sometimes a meeting isn’t a meeting at all it’s just a get together where you are being told what to do.

I remember a meeting a bunch of us had many years ago where the General Manager had promised the services and support of my morning show as a favor to their church.  We were informed that the show would camp out in a tent with a bunch of other people to raise awareness and dollars to the homeless.  This meeting was not a “brainstorming session” it was basically held to be given our marching orders.

I am all for serving the public.  I like to help people but I also think you need to focus on your brand and serve your target demo.  When you say the word “homeless” I think many people think of someone hairy, dirty, sleeping in a box and smelling like urine.  While that may be unfair I do think it’s accurate.

My suggestion was to do a benefit that touches the female demo:  raise money for shelters for abused women, help for terminally ill children, etc.  At that point the General Manager uttered this golden nugget, “This is not about the bad homeless, this is about the good homeless.”   I was stunned.  The good homeless?  Perhaps this is something I did not know about.  They have classified the homeless.  Evidently Home Security waits until we are asleep and then covertly brands the homeless with bar codes to separate them into two categories:  good and bad.  The next time you are tempted to make a donation while stopped at a light I think you should demand that the individual fold back his ear so you can see the aforementioned bar code to know if you are giving to the good or the bad homeless.  You can easily download the app on your smart phone to make this process an easy one.

I’d tell ya more but I’m late for a meeting……

 

DANNY CZEKALINSKI hosts a weekly internet radio show on mysourceradio.com       Show archives can be heard HERE

Just the image of Nancy Grace sets off emotion in people.  There is no grey area with her.  I’ll be honest….I’m not a fan or hers but I respect how she has branded herself.  If you ever are in public and a screaming match breaks out……stick around…there is a pretty good chance Nancy Grace will show up.  The recipe is quite simple:  Take some Jerry Springer, a dash of Larry King, sprinkle a small amount of Meet The Press, focus on a missing, cute, white girl, take calls that only agree with you, and scream at people on your panel.

I actually lay awake at night fearing that Susan Moss (her number one screaming panelist) will gnaw her way through my dry wall and devour my foot like a malnourished komodo dragon.  If I acted as a kid like these panelists do on her show, I would have been sent to my room without dinner.  Nancy Grace tries to pull her act at my parent’s dinner table then mom is getting the wooden spoon and dad is loosening his belt.

Just when ya think her head will spin around and pea soup will be forced from her trachea she takes a call about her twin girls.  A “random caller” (really?  we all know they are set up) asks Nancy “Ooooooo Nancy….how ARE the little ones?”  Suddenly Nancy’s face morphs into this sweet, serene look and she coos, “Bless you.  My babies are my anchor.  My strength.  The reason I breathe.”  That’s great Nancy…aren’t they sixteen now?  Maybe one of them is engaged to Hef.  It’s not like they just came home from the NICU.  Again, Nancy KNOWS how to play it.  She KNOWS how to play YOU.

Nancy Grace just had her highest ratings EVER last month.  Like her or hate her you KNOW her.  For today…that’s all I have….Good night friend.  🙂

I really miss being on the radio but it has been an invaluable learning experience for me.  I have had the opportunity to listen to a LOT of morning radio across the country.  Some good but most of it wasn’t good at all.  As someone who has “listened” to a ton of radio recently I’d like to point out three things that make me bail on a morning show (commercials are a given but a good tease will get ya through the break as long as it’s not a six-minute stop set).

1)  LAUGHING WHEN IT’S NOT FUNNY:  I love to laugh but some of these shows seem like  there’s a gas leak in the studio.  Imagine being out with your friends and laughing at EVERYTHING they say:  Friend:  “I think I’ll have the eggplant”  YOU:  AHHHHHH…you said eggplant.  It doesn’t have a shell so how can it be an egg?AHHHHHHHHHHH!”  Awkward.  Not real.

2)  NOT ENGAGING ME:  Entertain or inform me.  If you are talking to just hear yourself talk you are wasting the listener’s time.  I can get that without commercial interruption at the DMV.  Let’s take a simple topic like traffic tickets.  If you got one on the way to work I don’t care.  If you got OUT of one I’m a bit interested HOW that happened.  If you got out of it by telling the cop you are a producer for gay porn and you think his mustache is a turn on, I’m engaged AND entertained.  “I’ll tell ya why I’m walking funny, next!” is the tease into the break.

3)  DOES IT INVOLVE THE “BIG THREE:”  There are three categories that will grab someone’s interest:  a)  their home, b)  their heart and c)  their bank account.  If you start talking about any of these three,  people will show some interest.  Get them involved, make them laugh and/or  learn something then they will STAY interested.

Those are my three.  What makes YOU shut off morning radio?  In the meantime I’ll be on a busy street corner making a banana split in my pants hoping to get some TV coverage.

I don’t know it all and I never will.  In fact the important lessons I have learned in life have happened recently.  I think the reason is because I actually stopped, looking around, and took notice of things happening in and around me other than myself.  My battle with narcissism is something that will never cease but I can offer three bullet points to keep in mind to make a good first impression and make others like you.

1)  LAUGH AT YOURSELF:  In the words of my late father,”Sometimes life will s**t on you.”  Ya gotta be able to move on.  Self deprecation is such an endearing quality.  If you can laugh at yourself others will laugh with you.

2)  TAKE AN INTEREST IN WHAT MATTERS TO OTHERS:  We all are dealing with a lot on a daily basis.  Recently a friend of mine was worried about his mother.  She was going in for tests on her pancreas in a week.  I never met his mother but I made sure to make a note on my calender to ask how she was doing.  This is something I wouldn’t have done a year ago.

3)  HAVE FUN AND BE FUN:  No matter what..it always can be worse.  The greatest gift my father gave me was what he taught me in his death.  Our time here is short.  We don’t know when we will be given our personal “last call,” so don’t let the little things get to you.  You came into this world crying…doesn’t it make sense to go out laughing?

No matter what your line of work may be, chances are it involves some sort of sales technique.  Even the pimply faced kid at Best Buy will try to sell ya that extended warranty for that DVD player ya got on sale for twenty-nine bucks.

Not everyone is successful at sales.  I believe you can INCREASE your sales success by following three simple bullet points:

1)  RESEARCH:  What’s the history of the company or person?  What is their passion?  Where did they come from and what are their goals?  What are their strengths?  What are they lacking?

2)  LISTEN:  Your presentation is VERY important but don’t overdo it.  Brevity.  Make your pitch but don’t “talk to just talk.”  If you don’t LISTEN to what your potential client has to say, how are you going to know what they need?

3)  OFFER A SOLUTION:  If you did your research and listened to your potential client it should be simple to offer a solution.  You want to reinforce their strengths and address their needs (that sounds so much better than “weaknesses”).

Apply these three bullet points to “selling situations” in your life and I guarantee your success rate will increase.  Unless you’re from Omaha Steaks, calling me at home for a third time in one day, I don’t care if I get a free ham with a shipment of ninety-nine dollars or more, LEAVE ME ALONE!!!!  🙂

$75 MILLION DOLLARS!!!  That’s what CBS paid Katie Couric to anchor the CBS Evening News for five years.  Her contract is up in June and the rumor is they won’t offer her the anchor chair again.  This is no surprise to me in fact I was shocked she was offered the position in the first place.  Don’t get me wrong I think Katie Couric is a HUGE talent but she was destined to fail because that is not how she made her brand or what she does best.

Katie is a PERSONALITY.  Network News has never embraced a “personality” in the anchor chair.  The news is “delivered” as opposed to “presented.”  Jon Stewart makes a PRESENTATION of the news and does it very well but he has the right platform at Comedy Central.  The lesson here is simple:  NEVER DENY THE CHARACTER!  I’ve seen this mistake made in radio time and time again.  You can’t be someone you aren’t and be successful.  Listeners aren’t stupid.  They can sense when someone is not being “real.”  The best compliment an air-personality can receive is when someone says to them in public, “Wow…you’re just like you are on the radio.” 

Katie will bounce back and return to success because she will return to her brand and accept a position that EMBRACES her character.  I just wish I was paid $75 million to fail.  🙂