Want to be a great sportscaster? Watch the clock

“A big issue I’ve had is finding time to prep and critique my broadcasting. What tips do you have for streamlining prep work?” – An STAA Member

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If you want to be good in radio, you have to prep one hour for each hour you are on the air. If you want to be great, the ratio should be two-to-one. This applies equally to play-by-play guys and talk show hosts.

But where do you find the time to be great?

1. Prioritize
If you truly want to be great, you’ll make the time. You’ll prioritize your life so that career responsibilities come ahead of recreational and social activities. Put as much emphasis on making time to prep as you do making time to eat. One keeps your body thriving; the other does the same for your career.

2. Sleep less
If you need more hours in the day wake up earlier and/or go to bed later. Sleeping just 30 minutes less per day provides you with another 3.5 hours each week that you can devote to prep. Sleep an hour less each day and you’ll add more than one entire day to your month that you can devote exclusively to executing great broadcasts.

3. Set a routine
Another key is to have a routine. When I used to do Arena Football, I would make my two-deeps on Tuesday evenings, my game notes on Wednesdays, then plug statistical info into my boards on Thursdays. Breaking large projects into several smaller tasks makes things infinitely more manageable.

4. Find traffic jams
Another efficient use of your time is to critique your work while driving. Self-critique is the best way to get better fast. You’re not doing anything else when you’re stuck in traffic so turn off DJ Khaled and invest that time in yourself.

Lou Holtz suggests organizing your priorities using the WIN mantra – What’s Important Now. Applying that guideline to your time management will ensure that you are always putting your best self on the air.