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Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Michael Hughes... Moron of the Year!

Michael Hughes, the Senior VP and General Manager of WJFK in Washington DC, is officially the idiot of the year, if not the decade. This guy not only has no clue on how to run a business, market a product, or manage people, he also has not clue of the impact of his own decisions on the profitability of a business.

Brilliant Mike has been interjecting himself into decisions at WJFK for over a year. These decisions have had immediate detrimental impacts to the organization and will set the stage for the rapid decline of this powerhouse brand and the quick loss of the majority of the stable listener base. One simple example of this can be seen in how Mr. Hughes has handled the recent Howard Stern to satellite radio situation. Instead of defining a strategy that would ensure the highest listener value and ongoing loyalty of the large listing audience, to carry over into the new morning show in 2006, Michael decided to destroy his own brand and morning listening base.

WJFK (aka Mike Hughes) has been slaughtering Howard Stern’s show with over 45 minutes of additional commercials every day, by breaking into the show while Howard is telling a story or is engaged in discussion. The breaks were taking place at the cross over period for ratings books and also were upsetting loyal WJFK listeners whom many migrated away from this extremely frustrating situation. While hearing a funny bit or interview, all of a sudden WJFK would be playing a Koon’s Chrysler commercial.

Once the ratings books came out, Hughes immediately jumped on Howard blaming him for the declining book. The declines can be attributed to the decisions being made by Mr. Moron Hughes. The Stern Show recognized the value that Sir Idiot Hughes has made, you can hear Baba Booey mention the support they received from this DA (link coming soon).

Additionally, Mike Hughes has turned WJFK from a powerhouse of talk radio into the laughing stock of the industry and of DC. He does not support his employees. He has no concept of how to run a business. It is extremely clear he has no concept of consumer behavior and how to market and create compelling products for the marketplace. He is a CEO’s worst nightmare.

Another example of Mr. Mike’s great leadership was shown by his willingness to stand-up and promote the talent (that is left) on his station. The fact that The Don & Mike Show did not get picked-up in any of the new launches of the FreeFM talk format across Infinity’s massive portfolio of stations, can be directly attributed to the lack of support by Hughes. He made no attempt to recognize and evangelize to more senior strategy and programming planners at Infinity the immediate and strong value in expanding the Don & Mike footprint into many of these new stations.

Michael is solely responsible for destroying this radio station. Most people in the industry think he won’t be around beyond April of 2006. I expect three ratings books before he is thrown out on his ass. I hope to see him working at Exxon in the spring, if not sooner. Good bye Mike!

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