Part 1 of this article reviewed the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse that can directly impact any on air team. These four are Criticism, Contempt, Defensiveness, and Stonewalling. There is hope for any on air team that has struggled with each of these. I turned to women in on air teams that I greatly respect to get their input on what makes their team successful then follow that with the expert’s suggestions.
“The #1 thing I suggest is to pray together EVERY DAY! We do this. We always ask that God uses what we do. And the first thing we hear from listeners is they can’t believe how God uses something we have said in their lives. #2 Recognize each other’s strengths. Everyone has one. When you realize that’s the other person’s role, you can help them embrace that while you embrace your thing. #3 Realize no co-host is perfect. So everyone will have shortcomings, including you. Don’t dwell on those. Go back to #2 and #1 if necessary.” – Terese Main, Family Life
You get to choose what you think and believe about what is going on around you. By shifting your thoughts to prayer, appreciation and choosing to have five times more positive thoughts and interactions than negative, you will feel the heaviness of your work time begin to lift. Put yourself into your on air partner’s shoes and try to find a further understanding of what they are saying and why. Your on air partner may be simply letting off steam or you may simply not agree with what they are thinking but it does not have to be the end of world or the end of a great show.
“Been with my super cool morning host now for 10 years! He’s quite a bit younger than I am but it just works. I love him to pieces but mostly, I have the utmost respect for who he is in every way. He’s just a really good guy! There’s no way I could fake our on air relationship for 10 years… I wouldn’t have the strength! – Melody Vaughn, Joy FM
If you are going to spend 4-5 hours a day in a small room with another human being, validating that person and letting them know that you understand what they are feeling can go a long way towards building a really great show. And making note of a nice compliment (such as Melody’s) or action in your phone or calendar is not a bad idea if you struggle with focusing on the positive.
“Josh and I draw on and compliment each other’s strengths and joke about our weaknesses. One example: he’s a sports nut and will watch any and all sports. I watch my team play hockey and that’s it. Yet, we fill out the brackets, etc. He jokes about our two methods of completing the bracket. He does his “scientifically” using stats, etc. I pick based on location, mascot or color and I always win! We talk about this on the air and get listener input. If one of us “goofs” on something, we play it up and have fun without attacking each other. We banter without cutting and we have fun without being disrespectful.” – Beth Waldeck, Your QFM
Since we are talking about brackets, you get to choose to erase a different kind of chart; the invisible ledger of offenses that you perceive that your on air partner has committed. It is a human trait to keep track of what has been said or done that hurt our feelings. So, once that invisible ledger of ugliness is deleted, you can start implementing the steps above to improve your on air team relationship.
And have fun! You deserve a happy show that uplifts everyone in the room at the same time the listeners are being lifted up.
Stacey is afternoon co-host at WGTS/Wash DC with her husband Johnny. Reach her at email@example.com.