” WHAT IF? “
Growing weary of the “old guard” attitude at CFRA, I was almost too ready for the call from a head hunter. He asked if there was any way that I could fly to Toronto to interview for a program director’s job at an undisclosed radio station. The combination of my being bored and his sounding like he was hoping I couldn’t make it, was too much for me to resist.
While on the plane I’d figured out that the station in question was CFTR in which I had absolutely no interest. A couple of hours later I was in the headhunter’s office where he was trying to persuade me to take some kind of an aptitude test. Being mad at myself for even coming, I told him that I had zero interest in working at CFTR. I then asked if he could call me a cab back to the airport so we could stop wasting each others time. Looking almost relieved, he said, “I’ll be more than happy to drive you after I make a quick phone call.”When he returned, he told me that his client wanted to meet me so he could thank me for coming on such short notice.A few minutes later, Keith Dancy (pictured above) walked in, thanked me for coming, then asked the headhunter what the test had revealed. When told that I’d refused to take it, Keith looked at me quizzically. I just shrugged it off and said, “Only a miracle could fix CFTR and I doubt very much if there’s one lurking in that test. If someone were to come up with that miracle, most owners wouldn’t have the stomach to do what it takes.” Keith then said, “Hold onto to that thought” as he dialed the phone. After a moment or two he said to whoever answered, “Ted you gotta meet this guy, he’s a piece of work.” Moments later, Keith introduced me to Ted Rogers (pictured on top) and said, “Ted, George here thinks that you don’t have the guts nor the balls to do what it will take to fix CFTR.” Ted’s only response was to ask if I would do he and Keith the honor of joining them for an early dinner.
After making small talk at dinner, Keith turned to me and said, “Let’s play a game called what if? For example, what if I told you that we agree that CFTR is terrible. But, what if I also told you, that we’d let you do whatever it takes to fix it. How much money would it take, to make you interested?” Surprised and not at all ready for his question, I blurted out a figure that was double my current salary. The table went silent for a moment until Ted leaned over to me and asked if he could throw in a car. And just like that, I was the new Program Director of CFTR in Toronto.