10 Things To Put You In A League of Your Own

10 Things To Put You In A League of Your Own

by Tracy Johnson

You probably saw the movie A League of Their Own…the movie about the women’s baseball league with Tom Hanks, MaDonna and Geena Davis, who played Dottie Hinson. But there’s one scene that has a direct parallel to on-air performance. The wisdom can inspire you to be in a league of your own.

In the movie, Dottie tries to quit the team by telling the manager Jimmy Dugan (played by Hanks) that “it just got too hard.”

Dugan says:

It’s supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t hard, everyone would do it. The hard… is what makes it great.

And that’s true for the business you’re in, especially now. Like baseball, radio is fun. It’s exciting. It’s not like real work. But being a great air personality is hard work. Don’t let anyone tell you that isn’t hard. It is.

Building an audience is hard. It is.

Don’t let anyone tell you that creating 3 or four hours of fresh content each day isn’t hard. It is.

But on the other side of it? The other side of that all that struggle? That’s where the rewards are. The hard work produces satisfaction and happiness of seeing your listeners respond.

You get the pride of making an impact in someone’s day, and maybe change their life.

Of course the financial rewards are nice too.

Those rewards are earned. And it is hard. And it is worth it. Many go through their entire life without really taking control of it. They become a victim of circumstances. It could be so much richer by committing to the hard work to become great.

It’s that effort that puts your in a league of your own.

How To Be In A League Of Your Own

Every creative air personality has a secret weapon. You just need to know how to use it. How to unleash it on the world.

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That weapon is YOU. Your character.

Nothing can replace the human experience on the air. It’s a personal connection that draws and holds the audience.

According to a Katz survey, 75% of all listeners agree with this statement:

I turn on the radio because my favorite personality is on the air.

And, 72% agree that

I talk to friends about something I heard on my favorite station.

Nobody is talking to their friends about the 50 minutes of non-stop music every hour. And how many discussions do you overhear that you’re the station for traffic and weather together. Or even that you’re the perfect station to get through the workday.

Are you one of those favorite personalities? Do you have the talent and determination to be great?

And are you willing to put in the hard work to be in a league of your own?

How To Get There

I can’t turn you into a great personality. Nobody can. But I can show you the tools you need to find it for yourself.

In my webinar 10 Things To Take You To #1, I show you the recipe that has delivered tremendous results for air personalities all over the world.

The 10 things that can take you to #1 are:

10: Start Fast: You can’t afford to waste the listener’s time.

9:  Momentum to the Pay Off: Just because you’ve gained attention doesn’t guarantee you’ll keep it.

8: Drop Bread Crumbs: One great pay off is critical, but without mini-payoffs, you lose momentum (see #9).

7: Be famous for a Branded Feature: Give your show something for the audience to look forward to, and talk about.

6: Demonstrate Character Through Storytelling: Every personality should become a great storyteller.

5: Add Perspective: If you’re not willing to be bold and vulnerable, you cannot become great.

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4: Be Consistent and Unpredictable: These are contradictory terms, but both are important in attracting interest.

3: Show Your Heart: Demonstrating what you care about makes you endearing.

2: Make Them Laugh: Nothing is as powerful as a funny show. Nothing.

1: Find Your One Thing: Most shows try to do too much. Do less, and do it well.

You can check out the webinar for details on each. But be fore-warned: They all include hard work and preparation. It’s not easy. But that’s how you get to be in a league of your own.


To get through it, you need help. Maybe it’s a mentor, a PD you trust or a talent coach. But maybe you can’t afford a talent coach. In the next few weeks, I’m introducing an interactive online course for air talent that will train you on those things and more.

But for now, make a commitment to yourself, your career, your family and your future. Make a commitment to be the very best you can be.

It’s hard. Don’t let anybody tell you it’s not. The journey from #10 to #1 starts with clarity and focus.

Along the way, you’ll become frustrated. That’s part of the process. You may even want to quit when facing your 1,000th creative challenge.

Just remember what Jimmy Dugan said. It’s supposed to be hard.

Now go and become great.

Author: Tracy Johnson

Tracy Johnson specializes in radio talent coaching, radio consulting for programming and promotions and developing digital strategies for brands.

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