John Doe married Jane Doe, and they started a nice life. Every Sunday, Jane was cooking a big chicken. Right before inserting it in the oven, she was always chopping off both ends of the chicken. John got curious about that. So, after months and months, he dared asking “- Honey, why do you cut each end of the chicken ?” She replied “- Oh, I don’t know, but I saw my Mom doing that every sunday for years and years, so I always thought it was the right way to cook a chicken.” Aham. But John was not satisfied with that answer. So, one day, as they were visiting her Mom, he asked her. She laughed, and explained : ” – Oh, Gosh… yes… I was cutting the chickens, because our oven was too small !” Boom !
Now please think about it… how many things are played on your station for the same “it has always been done this way” reason ? How many things are done on your station in a particular way because “this is the way we always did” ?
Years ago, a radio network called me, and asked me if I could tell them how to solve one particular problem they exposed to me on the phone.
I replied “- Well, no. I will need to think a bit to be able to bring you the right solution.” The guy replied “- Ah ? It’s not easy for you ? You don’t have a ready-made solution ?” I said ” – Well, no. I need to think.” To which the guy replied ” – Then, you are hired ! You just got yourself a consulting contract !“.
When I met him, later on, he explained : the three consultants he had called before had replied “– oh, easy ! your problem is not really a problem ! I can solve that in a minute.” implying to this potential client that he was… kind of… mentally challenged (!), and that they had their toolbox ready to save his station ! Wrrrooooonng :-)
Do you know why thinking differently is such a difficult thing to do ? That’s because… THINKING is already a very tough thing to do ! We have experience, we know stuff, we’ve “been there, done that”, so it’s easy for all of us not to look at the big picture and give ready-made answers to new problems. This is where we fail.
The best way to think differently is to LOOK at things differently, to try new perspectives.
- Is your phone receptionist listening to your own radio station ? How does she perceive it ?
- Why is that DJ always trying to switch two songs around the same time each day ? What does he feel there ?
- Is your daughter proud to tell her friends you are the boss of THAT CHR station ? And why ?
Now, why exactly were you going to chop the ends of that chicken ?