Management — Quickest Way to SAVE Money in Radio.

Nails Mahoney
3 min readOct 3, 2017

Ready? You may be surprised by this.

I asked 134 presenters, “What’s the biggest problem you have as a radio presenter?”

As manager of a radio station, you are in the business of making money and saving money.

It is a business and businesses are run for profit. No harm in that — it’s how you feed yourself and keep a roof over your head. We all need to make an income to live in the world we have created.

For decades now, radio stations have been searching for ways to hold onto the money they make.

‘Company A’ buys ‘Radio Stations 1/2/3’ and merges the newsrooms to one overall service with one third of the staff. Maybe voice-tracks the midday show, extends shifts. Basically cutting back on the ‘human’ angle of the business to please the bottom line.

Again…in a business world, that makes a lot of sense.

Unfortunately, radio is not just a business.

It is not just staffed by people concerned primarily with the bottom line. It is also home to ‘creatives’ (that dreaded word). And creative people think differently.

Ask anyone in radio ‘How do stations save money?’ and you will hear:

Pay Cuts.



(Probably in that order too)

They are seen as the ‘Big Three’ of Corporate Restructuring.

Short term, it makes a lot of financial sense.

On paper, you are the Shareholder’s and Board’s hero.

Humour me for a moment, if you will.

Remember the question I asked Presenters?

“What’s the biggest problem you have as a radio presenter”?

The results are interesting.

Besides a 2% margin for Misc. replies, the stat that jumped at me was — ‘Money’.

The Number One element you are concerned with comes in at the Bottom of Top 5 replies.

LAST on the list! (I told you creative types were different).

Top of the list — ‘Jobs’. That’s fair.

Right below ‘Jobs’ is a tie between ‘No Feedback from Management’ and ‘Not Appreciated’.

These rank ABOVE money!

Knowing your staff’s motivation is crucial if you are to run a successful radio station.

You can get every element ‘right’ — your music, sales, promotions…all of that.

If your staff are de-motivated, it will damage the product and a damaged product doesn’t sell well.

So, How Do You Save Money? Today? Right Now?

Begin by doing something free — Appreciate the on air people, the production people, the imaging people…the Creatives. It is more important to them than money.

Sure they all want more money (we all do) but will gladly trade that right now for feeling wanted and loved. Yes, I said ‘loved’.

Will they say this to you?

No, of course not — You’re their boss.

But they told me and I’m passing it along to you.

Learn how to speak to them and give them genuine feedback. Pay attention to them.

Maybe some day give them more money or just do something simple like buying decent coffee for the kitchen/a new chair for the studio/a ‘Thank You’ card after a good gig…because guess what — the happier they are, the better your station sounds and the better your station sounds the more appealing it becomes to listeners and the more listeners you have the better ratings you achieve and the better ratings you achieve the More Money you make.

Who knew it could be so simple…?



Nails Mahoney

Presenter Coach and Motivational Speaker. “Keep sending your fireworks into the sky”.