Why Your Show Sucks on Monday, and 4 Things to Do About It

Why Your Show Sucks on Monday, and 4 Things to Do About It

by Tracy Johnson

Most everyone hates Mondays. There’s even a Boomtown Rats song that celebrates how much we despise Monday mornings.  It’s tough for listeners and for radio personalities.  It’s just different. Some personalities have told me they just accept that their show sucks on Monday. But that’s just giving up. Don’t do that.

What makes Monday different than the other weekdays? There are at least three reason your show sucks on Monday.


The Show Sucks on Mondays Because Monday is Different

It’s easy to understand why listener moods are different after a weekend. Weekends are usually more fun. Monday is a reintroduction to the routine.

Most of the audience spends at least half of the work week looking forward to the weekend. Few spend the weekend looking forward to Monday. So Monday is just plain different.

For two (or three) days, listeners have been in relaxed weekend mode. Now it’s time to crank it up again.

They’re moving a little slower, and so is their family. The kids don’t want to get up. And coworkers are going through the same thing. Everyone is a little cranky on Monday morning.

The result: When they finally get in gear, it’s frantic.

Clever radio segments that normally generate great response don’t produce the same results on Monday because listeners are not as available or  eager to play along with your show.

You Are Different

Morning show personalities have been off for three days (one of the advantages of a morning show is that virtually every weekend is a three day weekend, from 10am on Friday through Sunday night).

It’s two gear shifts. A shift into weekend mode, and then back into show mode.

It’s hard to transition to a different mindset. Sleep patterns have changed the last two nights. Even if rested, chances are you’re tired from a weekend hangover.

Show prep is probably not as thorough or as complete as other days. Most shows hit the door as soon as possible on Fridays. Then things happen over the weekend, and the prep antenna isn’t as “on” as usual.

Like the audience, morning show personalities are adjusting to a new week. It feels different because it is different.

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Physical Differences

Studies show that most everyone is physically different on Mondays. We tire more quickly.  Psychologically, we are less optimistic.

It’s what you might call the Monday Morning Blues. Or Blahs. This is a natural, and very real, condition. And it’s a key reason listeners need their favorite personalities even more on Monday morning. Radio shows are an escape from everyday lives.

This is a tremendous opportunity to be there for them. And it’s a heavy responsibility.

Fix Monday Morning

So what is the solution? Do we just accept it? Of course not. If the show sucks on Monday, dig in and find the sparkle.

Here are four things to pump it up and make it sizzle:

Show Prep

It’s always a good idea to plan a show in advance. We recommend planning a week ahead.

It’s tempting to rush out the door after Friday’s last break, but make spend a few minutes so Monday is locked and loaded. This is one reason my Personality Magnet Show Prep service releases the next week’s content each Thursday night.

When the next week of shows is laid out, daily show prep is more manageable. And you’ll be more confident.

Start Earlier On Mondays

Knowing Monday is a grind, make it a policy to get to the studio earlier than usual. Try to come in 30 minutes earlier if possible, but 15 minutes can make a big difference.

This helps multicast shows reconnect, plan content based on new weekend developments and get the cobwebs out before turning on the mic.

It also helps to play some warm-up games to get the blood flowing. It may seem silly, but it’s amazing how quickly it helps pump up the energy.

Plan For No Listener Interaction

This is good advice for every day, but especially Monday mornings.

Since the audience is dragging, they’re less likely to participate. Getting upset won’t help. And begging for phone calls sounds horrible and desperate. Accept that the phones won’t light up and prepare as if nobody will call.

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Too many shows count on listener contributions to drive the show. Phone calls on the air are terrific, but planning for the audience to provide entertainment value is lazy.

It also helps to double the effort to insure interactive content is simpler, easier to play and require less thought than other days.

Prepare Psychologically

Success in life is a product of attitude.

Mondays happen and nothing will stop them. Program yourselves psychologically to start the week full of enthusiasm.

Figure out how to look forward to a new week of exciting opportunities. Change your mood and Monday will follow.


Monday will never be fun. And it will always be different. That’s why it takes a little more focus and extra effort. Otherwise, the show sucks on Monday.

Prepare and plan for it,  knowing it’s the most difficult day of the week.

Oh, and this goes double for Tuesdays following a long weekend!

And triple for the first day back after the Christmas holidays!


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