If you're one of the 35% of Americans who can't wait to discuss American Idol around the water cooler the morning after, you'll be interested to know that a good part of the show's phenomenal success comes from a proven morning radio show formula.
Radio consultant Mike McVay (the guy who's mentored my career for the past 20 years) says the secret to putting together a top-rated morning show is in the casting--you need a "jerk," a "chick," and a "dork." Sounds like most drive-time radio laugh-fests you hear these days. It also sounds a lot like Simon, Paula, and Randy.
The judges' chemistry is a big part of what makes American Idol "must see TV," but without Simon's biting candor, Idol is just another TV talent show. It's his total transparency, those infamous, no-holds-barred critiques that get America talking. Simon says what most people are thinking about the contestants--he just doesn't have that pause switch that stops the average person from speaking their mind.
There's an important lesson here. More and more, I hear people tell me they want more transparency in their relationships, personal and professional. They need constructive criticism, not watered-down PC answers to life's tough questions. Think about it--don't you respect and appreciate the tough love responses your family, friends, and co-workers give you more that the "happy talk" you get from someone who cares more about avoiding conflict than they care about you?
Start a "Simon Says" philosophy for all your relationships and you'll become the person everyone wants to hear from!