Industry Views

Politeness, Punctuality and Power

By Walter Sabo
Consultant, Sabo Media
A.K.A. Walter Sterling
Radio Host, Sterling On Sunday
Talk Media Network

imFor decades the power-lunch spot in Manhattan was the beautiful Four Seasons restaurant. Check it out: A history of the Four Seasons Restaurant in New York City – Four Seasons new ownership (

Top clients would host luncheons at the Four Seasons with Sabo Media. These included Walter Anderson, former chairman/CEO of PARADE magazine who was a regular customer. If the lunch was scheduled for 12:30 pm and I arrived at 12:15 pm, Anderson was already there. Next time, I would arrive at 12:05 pm for the 12:30 pm lunch; he was already there.

The restaurant manager/maître d’ explained that, “The most powerful person always arrives first.” Of course. The most powerful person could control where she sat, where she faced and what your view of the room would be. When Walter Anderson hosted future lunches, I arrived at about 11:15 am for the 12:30 pm meet!

If I had any early career success it was not because I knew anything, it was because of Eleanor Ranft, my assistant. Prior to working with me she had been Robert Sarnoff‘s assistant for 20 years. Robert, as-in-son of the General. (Eleanor knew how to address letters to ambassadors.) At the end of the workday, she would go over the telephone call sheet and make sure I had returned every call. Neither of us were going home unless I returned every call.

When addressing emails, the most powerful people return the emails instantly. Test it, send a note to the most powerful people you know, see what happens. Mel KarmazinBob PittmanHoward SternMichael HarrisonChris OlivieroKraig KitchinDavid YadgaroffBill WhiteLee HarrisDan MasonJarl MohnMarc Rowan instant answers. Instant response keeps a person in the deal-flow, the conversation and the action. Instant response makes them powerful.

Conversely, for weeks I tried to have lunch with a local market EVP, no answer. I didn’t want a job; I was trying to place a sales order for an agency friend! No answer. Finally, I asked the market program director why I never heard from his boss. Answer, “He doesn’t think you can do anything for him.” Obviously, the order went to a different company.

A common trait of every star I’ve had the privilege to know is that they are all extremely polite. For example, Randy ThomasCharlie VanDykeBruce Morrow, Howard Stern, the late Casey KasemElvis Duran are kindness and manners personified. They send thank you notes. Their interpersonal attitude is to share experience rather than to say look it up yourself. Many top executives built their entire career by sending thank you notes.

That being said, THANK YOU for being a client of Sabo Media. Thank you for clearing “Sterling On Sunday” on stations like KMOX, KMBZ-FM, WPHT, KDKA and Albany’s Talk 1300.  Have a pleasant Labor Day.

Walter Sterling-Sabo can be contacted at or 646.678.1110 mobile. He’ll answer immediately. Sabo Media’s robust client list over the years has included PARADE magazine, Sirius Satellite Radio, The Wall Street Journal Radio Service, RKO, Salem, and CBS. Sabo was the first to monetize online video stars and influencers through his company HITVIEWS.

Industry News

TALKERS 2023: Video of “The BIG Picture” Panel Discussion Posted


During the coming days, videos of all of TALKERS 2023’s numerous sessions conducted June 2 at Hofstra University will be posted, continuing today (6/16) with the panel discussion, “The BIG Picture.” The session,im sponsored by Newsmax, was introduced by TALKERS associate publisher and media attorney, Matthew B. Harrison, Esq. (pictured at right) and moderated by TALKERS publisher, Michael Harrison (pictured above). Panelists (pictured below from left to right) include Lee Harris, director of integrated operations, NewsNationLee Habeeb, host/producer, “Our American Stories”; Kraig Kitchin, CEO, Sound Mind, LLC/chair, Radio Hall of FameArthur Aidala, Esq., founding partner, Aidala, Bertuna & Kamins, PC/host, AM 970 The Answer, New York; Chad Lopez, president, WABC, New York/Big Apple Media; and Dr. Asa Andrew, CEO/host, “The Doctor Asa Show.” See video of the session here.



Industry News

2023 Radio Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

The Museum of Broadcast Communications announces the selection of the 24 Radio Hall of Fame 2023 nominees chosen by the Radio Hall of Fame nominating committee, with input from the radio industry and listeners. Voting – by more than 800 industry members – for inductees begins tomorrow (6/16) and runs through June 30. The top six vote recipients will gain induction as part of the 2023 Radio Hall of Fame Induction class. The two additional inductees that will make up the eight-person induction class will be selected by theim Radio Hall of Fame nominating committee. The nominees are: Bert Weiss, Bob Rivers, Charles Laquidara, Dyana Williams, Gerry House, Jaime Jarrin, John & Ken, John DeBella, Johnny Magic, Kevin Matthews, Kid Leo (Lawrence Travagliante), Larry Elder, Laurie DeYoung, Lee Harris, Rev. Louise Williams, Bishop, Mark Simone, Mary McCoy, Matt Siegel, Mojo in the Morning, Monica May, Nina Totenberg, Pat St. John, Shadoe Stevens, and Shelley “The Playboy” Stewart. 2023 Radio Hall of Fame inductees will be announced Monday, July 24, and honored in-person at the 2023 Radio Hall of Fame induction ceremony on Thursday, November 2, at the InterContinental New York Barclay Hotel in New York City. Radio Hall of Fame co-chairman Kraig Kitchin states, “Congratulations to each of this year’s’ nominees on this recognition. Behind this slate of nominees, the nominating committee reviewed more than 2,500 incoming suggestions from industry members and listeners before determining this group of talented individuals. Each nominee is deserving of induction, and I look forward to the results of the forthcoming confidential voting results.”

Industry News

Panel Discussion to Tackle the Talk Media Industry’s Key Concerns

One of the most popular sessions at the annual TALKERS Conference is “The Big Picture” panel and this year’s planned installment of the discussion promises to continue in that tradition of perspective and pertinence.  The panel will be introduced by TALKERS associate publisher/media attorney, Matthew B. Harrison, Esq. and moderated by TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison.  Panelists include (in alphabetical order): Arthur Aidala, Esq. founding partner, Aidala, Bertuna & Kamins, PC/host, AM 970 The Answer, New York; Dr. Asa Andrew, CEO/host, The Doctor Asa NetworkLee Habeeb, host/producer, Our American StoriesLee Harris, director of Integrated Operations, NewsNation; and Kraig Kitchin, CEO, Sound Mind, LLC/chairman, Radio Hall of Fame.  One more panelist has yet to be named.  The issues that the session will cover include: the existential cultural, technological and financial issues facing radio and talk media; the medium’s role in the national political conversation and culture wars; the impact of artificial intelligence on intellectual property and creative originality; the evolution of ethics, justice and journalism in American society; and an examination of potential topics and concerns that will keep the medium vibrant as we move deeper into the 21st century. “It’s all about perspective,” says panel moderator Michael Harrison. “If we are to survive as an industry as well as a community, we have to step back and look at the big picture within which we operate… and it is getting bigger and bigger with each passing moment. We must avoid becoming smaller and smaller.”  More than 60 luminaries from the talk media industry are set to speak at a power-packed day of fireside chats, solo addresses, panel discussions, workshops, award presentations, new equipment showcases and endless networking opportunities. TALKERS 2023 is nearing an advance sellout. See more about the agenda, registration, sponsorship and hotel information here

Industry News

NewsNation Announces Lee Harris’ New Role

Yesterday (5/1), TALKERS magazine reported that WINS, New York morning drive co-anchor Lee Harris is leaving his position with the Audacy all-news station at the end of this week to join Nexstar Media Group’s cable news and digital operation NewsNation. Today, Nexstar officially announces the news and expands on Harris’ new, New York-based role. NewsNation says he joins the network as director of integrated operations inim which he’ll be responsible for the development and distribution of NewsNation’s audio content. He’ll also assist in news writing and NewsNation specials. Nexstar president of networks Sean Compton states, “As we recently celebrated the milestone becoming 24-hour news network weekdays, we are continually looking for ways to grow the NewsNation brand across our linear and digital platforms. I am thrilled that Lee Harris is going to be leading these efforts as we further expand the network’s reach with viewers and listeners across the country.” Harris comments, “It took an incredible opportunity to convince me to leave 1010 WINS after nearly 30 years. But Sean Compton and [president of news programming] Michael Corn showed me that at NewsNation I will be helping to fundamentally change the way news is covered and presented in this country and this is an opportunity I couldn’t pass up.” Meet Lee Harris at TALKERS 2023 on Friday, June 2 at Hofstra University on Long Island. 

Industry News

Lee Harris Leaves 1010 WINS to Join News Nation

Legendary New York City radio news anchor Lee Harris is leaving Audacy’s Big Apple all-news station 1010im WINS. Harris, whose last day with WINS will be Friday (5/5), has been with the all-news outlet for almost 30 years, currently co-hosts the morning drive daypart with Susan Richard. He tells TALKERS magazine he’s taking on a management position with Nexstar Media Group’s cable news operation News Nation.