The music and radio industry once had a standard set of rules that everyone wanted to be successfully followed. Since the industry’s drastic change around 2001, there was an overhaul of the people who worked in the industry as well as the rules. More than half the industry is gone and the ones who remain have probably broken one or several of these rules during their career.
Keep Your Mouth Shut and Your Ears Open
You can do this today but only if you plan to be working the same job for your entire career. A closed mouth won’t get fed and keeping your mouth shut today will appear as a lack of motivation and you will be ignored. In all seriousness, this advice has been dead for the last 20 years. There are many announcers today in their 40s and 50s who waited for someone to take them to the next level and it never happened.
Don’t Burn Any Bridges
To hell with BURNING bridges in today’s industry you better learn how to build one better yet build MANY. When you are creating opportunities for yourself you ARE going to burn bridges. People will be jealous, get pissed at you and in some cases even hate you for having the courage to be who the never could be and that’s not your concern.
When you make a decision to take control of your career, just do it. A young aggressive industry person was once looked down upon in the industry as someone who was not following the rules and moving up the ladder at a pace that was uncomfortable for others.
Today you BETTER be aggressive and you better grow fast because the more you can do the longer you will have a career.
Work your way up the ladder
I have personally never believed in industry politics which is why I work for myself but working for someone does require protocol and there is a fast way you can do this. Let me give you a piece of advice I wish I didn’t have to learn the hard way early on in my industry career.
Give ALL jobs a time limit and a goal. NEVER accept an offer where you are told you are being tested (with low pay). If your PD is immature and jealous of your talent because he missed his 15 minutes make plans to leave, you won’t win in a negative situation like this.
In today’s industry, you will work your way up the ladder much quicker by diversifying your skillset. NEVER and I mean NEVER depend on someone else to build your career. Take control.
Find a Mentor
I have never had one single mentor in my entire career. I have found that people are either too busy or too selfish and concerned with their own careers or perhaps they felt I didn’t need a mentor and I didn’t.
Doing what someone else has done to be successful may work but you won’t be who you are and you will not enjoy it. You have to create your own pathway to success.
Once you get into Radio, you will be addicted for Life.
There is CERTAINLY life after radio don’t EVER believe that. I know MANY people who have left and they are doing MUCH better than they were when they were on the air.
Some are doing worse but the ones that I know are doing better. Radio DJs today must realize that being on the air means that you have exceptional communication skills.
Local TV Radio stations are taking more chances on radio people than ever and many companies need media representatives. I just saw jobs posted on Linkedin SPECIFICALLY looking for people with broadcasting experience to work for major corporations as media reps.
Surround Yourself with the Right People
Politics still exist in the industry so to an extent this is still a good piece of advice, I would venture to say it’s better to aim to surround yourself with the right OPPORTUNITIES AND the right people to get them.