A common saying in radio is if you want to stand out you’ve got to find a way to do something someone, or everyone, else is and do it better. Or you have to find something no one is doing and make it great. It can even be something that everyone is talking about. Anyone can take a weird topic, like meth gators, and talk about it but you make it stand out when your co-host says maybe it wouldn’t be that bad because their teeth would fall out.
This is a mantra we live by in radio but it really applies to just about everything. I often make jokes about new World Records because they are weird things I never would have thought of. Who thinks of balancing a lawnmower, that’s on, on their chin or stacking wet soap the highest they can. That’s a case of doing it better, but those records obviously started because someone thought of something different.
It’s the human condition to be competitive and be different. On the Morning Show this week we talked about ESports after a 16-year-old won the first Fort Night World Cup and pocketed three million dollars for doing so. We asked the question if it is a sport with competitive leagues, tournaments, even schools have ESports teams and scholarships to do so. You may disagree on whether or not it’s a sport but look at where it’s at now. There are huge tournaments people attend and players can win big money in, and this has been going on for a while. How far has that come from just a form of entertainment?
Another one that is way more mainstream now is fantasy sports. Over 30 million people will be playing fantasy football as the fall rolls around. That started as a way nerds got more involved in the game. Now, millions of people play, it has become its own industry. I even blog about it myself. It was met the same way at the beginning ‘Look at these nerds. How silly is this?’ Now you definitely know someone who is in a league with friends or even a work league.
Doing something better or something different goes right along with another mantra I hold dear ‘Always be evolving. The second someone says this is how we’ve always done it then their business dies.’ The world moves fast and is only picking up more speed in the digital era with the internet and social media. When I first started in radio Facebook was something new for radio and maybe a Twitter. Now, everyone, ever business is on some sort of social media and you have to be. If you were looking for someone or a business and they don’t have any online presence don’t you trust them a little less?
Those who really want to achieve success never settle. The second you achieve success and don’t think ‘How can I keep improving? What can I do that is different or better?’ then you will peak and someone else will pass you. While it may sound selfish you’ve always got to be thinking more, bigger, better.
It’s a sports cliché but I’ve always believed in ‘Be better by outworking everyone.’ Your effort is something you can always control. Talent will take you only so far and the true superstars are the ones that combine effort with a superstar effort. In my career of radio I’m still relatively green. Don’t get me wrong I definitely think I have talent, but has gotten me to the point is my willingness to grind and outwork anyone else around me. I love what I do, and that helps, but I’m always wanting to do more, learn more and to continue to improve.
Always look to improve and learn more but never forget ‘Do it better or do it different.’ In your life, career, relationships, always be self-evaluating and trying to improve.