An open letter to my team…

This may be one of the hardest things I’ve ever written…

On February 26th, 2014…I walked into 250 Commercial Street and was formally introduced to my new team.  It was a day full of excitement and hope for the future.  I was giddy.  I met some truly amazing people, and felt within seconds that I had found my permanent home.  The staff was so accommodating and ready to win, and I couldn’t wait to lead them into battle.

Over the course of nearly 3 ½ years, they became my family. Some, closer than others…but we were tight-knit and genuinely loved one-another. Sure, like all families…we had good days and bad days, but we always felt together. And I was proud. Proud to be the one to carry the flag and defend them against all enemies. We reached milestones that hadn’t been seen in years, including the first #1 book with Women 25-54 in 13 years. That was a prideful moment…and I was so happy for my team and their achievements.

Then…things began to change.

XAMdylZ

I became an equal partner in a great deception. My judgment became clouded, and I began to show favoritism. I didn’t think it was obvious, but upon further review…perhaps it was more noticeable than I knew.  Slowly, as much as I preached the “team” concept…I began to selfishly insulate myself, only focusing on certain people in order to maintain the deceit.  I hate to say it, but we were pretty good at keeping things quiet for the most part. That is a blessing and a curse.

I still attempted to maintain the “coach and team” mentality with my staff. Regularly building them up with motivational tools, and inspirational quotes. They all know that one of my favorite things to do, was show a clip from a movie at the end of my staff meetings.  The speech from ”Miracle”, the final race in “Seabiscuit”, or a motivational moment from “Moneyball”. I always felt like their mentor, and wanted them to win. Yet was engaging in behavior that would ultimately lead to division and my own downfall.

I was deceptive…

I was wrong…

But, I was not the only one…

Having a relationship with a co-worker not only clouds the lines of loyalty, but eventually…leads to destruction of long lasting friendships. I went out of my way to protect one person, and make their life easier every chance I could.  I listened to their many complaints and near constant negativity…about the job, and their co-workers, and did what I could to make life easier for one, all while being played like an instrument in their own self-indulgence.  When they complained about being interrupted in the studio, I put up “keep out” signs. When they complained about not having enough time to get things done, I reassigned production duties. This was only going to end badly, and that’s exactly what happened.

I will not get into too many specifics about how things ended, but instead want to make sure everyone who trusted me understands how I feel about this…and them. It can be summed up in one short sentence…

I am…….so fucking sorry.

Not just for my actions, but for the fact that you were led along in this deception. That I put my own wants and needs (and the wants and needs of my partner-in-crime) ahead of all of you. That as much as I preached it, I never practiced the idea of “Team First”.  I insulated myself and focused on one person and their well-being, rather than my job of helping you achieve your goals. For that, I am sorry.

The regret and remorse I feel over my darkest moment really pales in comparison to the hurt and sorrow I feel over letting my team down.  That’s the hardest thing to live with in this…that I left them high and dry. I turned a blind eye to the needs of the many, while only focusing on the desires of one. However, I was not the only one to do that.  As the saying goes: “It takes two to tango”.  I never wanted to run away from this problem, and refuse to abandon my team, put my head in the sand, and ignore the past. Because, I’m no longer selfish. I’m not a singular entity…and yet, I know there is one more apology that SHOULD be given by the other half of this…but it will never happen. Because of their own pride…and lack of awareness. Put simply, that apology won’t come because they do not care about anyone else. Period.

I will not try to elevate myself over anyone, especially since I fell so far down the dark path that my future is still not certain. But, I face that future knowing that my actions were wrong in being an equal partner in this deceit of my team.  Yes…an equal partner.

I’m not sure what is worse…my judgment being clouded over 3 years…or completely abandoning your “friends” for your own selfish interests. I will admit it…I was wrong. I put my own heart and selfish desires before those who mattered most. I owe everyone I heartfelt apology. It took the worst experience possible to finally show me that. You will always be in my heart, and I will always consider you all to be my greatest achievement…and worst personal failure. I was part of a deception. And my team deserves to hear from me how much I care about them, and how much sadness I have over this outcome. And, I’m not the only person who owes them that. But, rather than show some sense of compassion…there are those who would rather slam that door behind them, lighting a match as they cross a bridge without a care in the world about who they abandoned and hurt. They rather celebrate the fact that they were able to run away from their problems, rather than deal with them and admit their failings. Then again, I saw it every day, and even helped them avoid that responsibility. I guess music really is important to some people, because they will never admit that they played everybody for a long time…and continue to do so.

I miss my team. I love all of you…and I will never forget the good times. Yet, I will always feel sorrow for the fact that I placed my own foolish interests…and those of someone else…ahead of yours. You deserved my best, and I failed you.

The karma train caught up with me…and it’s not done. But, there are those who can try to avoid it at every turn…but will eventually meet it as well, it’s the way of the world. When it does catch up with them…it will not be a happy sight.

If you have regrets, don’t bury them. Admit your mistakes. Ask forgiveness. Become a better person. Prove that you can be trustworthy…prove that regardless of your mistakes, that somewhere inside…a good person still exists within you. That’s my goal. And, I should not be alone in feeling that way…

 

I am…….so fucking sorry.

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Children’s Hospital

Even though I have only lived in Birmingham for 3 1/2 days, I feel compelled to blog about Magic 96.5’s radiothon, which is going on until Friday at Colonial Brookwood. Why do I feel compelled to blog about this? Three reasons.

First…come on, it’s MAGIC 96.5! Gotta shout it out for my new peeps! Rob & Shannon, Ericka, and JT are making miracles happen on the air, so take time to call and help the kids of Alabama who need our help.

Second and Third…Daryn and Allyn Ballance, my daughters. If anything happened to them, I would not know what to do. Thank God for places like Children’s Hospital, so that I can be assured that if anything happens to my kids, I know they will be taken care of. If you have kids…or are planning on it someday, you know what I am talking about. This is similar to purchasing an insurance policy…you are insuring that your kids will recieve the best care available.

Be sure to click here to check out Magic 96.5 online for all of the phone numbers, and to listen live if you are outside the Birmingham area.

You can also click below to make a donation online…

Donate here
Donate here

PUNK’D! (or…welcome to the team…)

Yesterday was Day One here at Magic 96.5, and I guess that as “the new guy”, it is a rite of passage to be pranked by someone on staff. This…I have experienced.

Yesterday afternoon, I stopped in to meet one of my team members, and missed an overhead page summoning me to the front lobby. I asked someone for directions to the soda machine, and was told that I was being paged. I checked the lobby and asked who was looking for me. I was greeted by a very pleasant lady who introduced herself as a representative of some health care organization (I have blocked out what was actually said). She explained that as condition of my employment, that I was required to take a DRUG TEST.

Does this test for hops and barley? If so...I'm done.
Does this test for hops and barley? If so...I'm done.

Wha????

She then produced a small box, that contained a home drug testing kit, and asked that I “fill up the cup and return it”. I looked at her with a hint of trepidation, and asked the most ridiculous question ever: “You mean, right NOW?” She answered in the affirmative and smiled. At this point, I started to retreat out of the lobby and do my duty. As I was leaving, I took a quick, embarrassed look around the lobby to see who was watching this exchange, and noticed one of my new, fellow Program Directors, Paul Cashin of WERC standing off to the side. As I turned towards him, he began to laugh uncontrollably. I also noticed our Marketing Director, Cindee Standridge as well (who has denied any and all involvement). At that stage…I knew I’d been had. Well played, funnyman. I had heard the stories of how Paul LOVES to prank folks, and has a twisted sense of humor…I now have first hand experience in this field.

I was told later in the day that if I retaliate I may want to wait until his guard is down. Also, if I do plan a counter-attack, that Paul does not understand the term “proportional response”. Uh oh…loose cannon.

A storm is coming. This will be fun…

Roll Tide

…or “WAR EAGLE”! It’s early…i’ll decide on one soon enough.

The rumors of my new employment are true. As I mistakenly said to someone a few moments ago, I am off the Government Cheese, and back to Gruyere (don’t print that, R&R…) I am proud to say that I am rejoining Clear Channel, this time as Program Director of WMJJ-FM (Magic 96.5) in Birmingham, Alabama. I was able to travel to B-ham last weekend to scout out rental locations, and was truly taken aback by how wonderful the area was. I took my family to see the statue of “Vulcan” (and his naked arse), went to the McWane Science Center, and spent time just driving around, enjoying the town.

Do you feel a draft out here?
Do you feel a draft out here?

I think I’m gonna like it here…

To all 67 of you who voted…

…THANK YOU!

Even though I had no knowledge that I was included in the poll, 67 people somehow found my name on the THIRD page of the WREG Favorite DJ Poll.

 

All of you ROCK! If you can verify that you voted for me…I will give you a dollar.

That’s apparently what the guys who won did…To quote Jill Bucko…”I’m just sayin'”.

At least I beat Mike Fleming…

Here they go again…

They are at it again..Ron & Karen were talking abut baby names this morning when yet another unprovoked attack came. This time, Ron wondered if Lance was a popular baby name anymore and then said that NO ONE would name their child Lance.  Uh…RONALD???? Hello??? At least he admitted that his name wasn’t cool anymore due to Ronald McDonald…

From one clown to another…:)

So, I looked to see who’s name was more popular. According to the Social Security Administration (Nervous laugh…) in 2006 RONALD was the 251st most popular name…down from 112th in 1992…a drop of over 70%!! Meanwhile, LANCE was the 321nd most popular name (I never said it was cool…just making a point), down from #204 in 1992. A drop of only about 55%. It looks like Ron’s name is becoming UNPOPULAR faster than mine! GAME, SET, MATCH!

Like I was saying, I never said I had a cool name, I have a unique name. My Daughters have unique names. In the long run…it makes you more memorable, and creates a greater first impression.  At least that’s what I keep telling myself. If I had a boy, would I have named him “Lance”? Hell, no. Teasing sucks…trust me on this.