Everyone has one, right?

The first year they landed in some sort of station management chair and had the responsibility of leading people.

For me, it was 1988. Jim Davis (for those of you who are broadcasting vets, he was “Big Jim Edwards” on CKLW for many years) gave me my first opportunity, as his sales manager at WGRD in Grand Rapids. I was promoted from within, and frankly, I had no idea what to do. I asked Jim for some advice on where to start, and I remember what he said to this very day.

“Dave, you’ll be pulled in a lot of directions with people. The key is to never let the urgent replace the important.”

And in retrospect, I’ve never been given more important advice in my life.

Frankly, there are lots of reasons to go to conventions or events in our industry, and likely just as many reasons not to go. Most of us tend to go to the same events annually because it’s habit or it’s where our colleagues go — and some don’t go because it’s expensive and time-consuming, and, well, who has time for that when there are spreadsheets to prepare and average unit rates to obsess over?

That brings me to DASH.

I took a chance on DASH in 2013. It was a brand-new event, but I trusted the fact that there were some very smart people putting it together, and in all seriousness, what could possibly be more important than sitting in a room for two days and sharing insights and ideas with a diverse collection of audiotainment insiders, including audio content providers (radio and streaming broadcasters and investors, app providers, playlist services, etc.), car manufacturers, advertisers and agencies, car dealers, and automotive suppliers? Why look at the short- and long-term future of our livelihoods with the people that truly control it when I could sit at my desk and grind over my October budget?

As I get set to go to my third DASH event in November of this year, I feel compelled to STRONGLY encourage every broadcaster that’s ever read this blog/website, or felt like their future was being defined for them, to go to this event. While there are some outstanding events in our business, I’ve never felt like I do when I leave DASH. I feel scared, energized, smarter, passionate, pissed, confident, and in many ways, argumentative. Folks, let me tell you, it gets the blood flowing — and in our business, there’s nothing more important. Maybe not as “urgent,” as some other things, but very, very “important.”

Please take a few minutes and really consider your attendance this year. Oops, maybe I can rephrase that.




Dave Paulus
VP/GM, Max Media Norfolk/Virginia