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How to Keep Kickin’ Country On ‘In a Ice Storm’

Two days ago, I wrote a post and said, the ice storm won’t hurt a radio station. But when the ice starts coming down, ‘watch out.’

So, how do you keep a radio station like Kickin’ Country on during an ice storm, and after. You put your boots and you head out the door. And along the way you starting thinking about things that ‘might go wrong.’

I received a call this morning from Operations Manager at Results Radio, Scott Maguire. Hey, I know you don’t want to hear this, but we’re off the air again. All three. Mix, Hot and Kickin’. I’m thinking to myself, ‘great, we were just out at the transmitter and got back to the house at about 3:00 a.m. In a nutshell, for our engineers Mike and John, here we go again.

Mike told John he was going to take a shower and grab something to eat before heading out. Probably the best thing he could have done. Grab a little thinking time.

These guys haven’t had any time to do that in the past 6 days. It’s been run, run, run from transmitter site to town and back and forth. Factor in, ‘wait for power,’ ‘wait for power that works correctly,’ and it’s been pretty frustrating for them.

I rode along last night just to get a feel for it. Along the way, part of our plan included ‘me,’ actually getting a chance to help. We got to a point where we needed some technical questions answered. I actually got a chance to help! Sort of. Nobody at the station in Sioux Falls seemed to know how to switch one little thingy off, to make our streaming work a certain way. I said, someone at corporate has to know, let me call them.

Now, if you work in corporate and someone has the ‘nerve’ to leave their cell phone at the bottom of an e-mail, you can guess one thing. The guy either knows something, or knows someone who does. I also consider that phone number an opportunity to somewhere along the way find out if that person does know something, or know someone who does. Follow along?

So I called George in Colorado. George takes my call, he’s at a concert, but he takes my call. He isn’t sure what to do, but says, hey there’s a guy in Twin Falls, Idaho that is really good at that stuff.

Now, we’re cooking with bacon grease folks! I get a guy named Brad on the line, and he’s not sure. ‘Let me jump on my computer and walk you through it.’ ‘Oh, you don’t have access to that account, we’ll let me jump in my car and go to the station to find out what you might have going on.’

Over 1000 miles away, there’s a guy that’s willing to put his shoes on and head out the door to help. Over 1000 miles away, there’s a guy that’s been referenced out by another guy in Colorado as to how to make something work. I was pumped to be able to help one little time, one little way thanks to two guys outside of the state who cared enough to answer the phone and to offer to help.

Hey, don’t worry, we’ll take care of it on Monday. Hey, nobody’s answering. Hey, we’ll be there at 3:00 p..m. to help you with the problem. These are just a few of the comments I’ve heard too many of this week.

Kickin’ Country wasn’t these guys stations. It’s MINE. Jake, Mikes, Johns, Scott’s Jay’s, Dan’s and mine. Most important, it’s our ‘listeners,’ station! But these two guys in Colorado and Idaho, ‘helped,’ late at night fix and solve a simple part of the equation that wouldn’t have got taken care of ’till Monday.’ And for that, I thank them. They are the kind of people I want on my team. Period.

I’ve had enough of it. The weather. The situation. I want it to just get back to normal so I can watch Nascar and Basketball and scratch. But you know what? IT’s RADIO. I’ve had it easy back at the station and at home long enough.

I’ll just keep riding along and helping out here and there. Somewhere along the way I’ll pick up a little knowledge that might help me or the engineers some day or some night.

Oh, and George in Colorado and Brad in Twin Falls, Idaho…’if there’s anything I can do for you sometime, let me know. I’ll leave my cell phone on and leave it by the bed. With the ringer turned on, fully charged and plugged in. You see, that’s what real radio people do.

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