Wharton Business Radio Scoring Successes
- by Matthew Brodsky
We have a number of ways to gauge the early-days success of SiriusXM channel 111, Business Radio Powered by the Wharton School. One is the support of Dean Geoffrey Garrett.
“In terms of getting Wharton out into the world … this initiative is a fantastic one,” Garrett said.
As Scott Greenstein, president and chief content officer at SiriusXM, recalled, Garrett “got it from day one”—demonstrated his interest and support in an email before the new dean even had arrived on campus.
Another way to measure this success is the fact that 15 to 20 advice-seeking CEOs, according to Greenstein’s estimate, have called in to the professors who host the 23 radio shows on the channel.
Speaking of the faculty, who double as radio talk show hosts, their support is another indication.
“Picture how busy the professors are … now, moonlighting with 23 live radio shows,” Greenstein said.
They aren’t the only ones who want to be a part of the programming and gain access to the 30 million SiriusXM subscribers. One key indicator of success for Greenstein is that people outside of Wharton are calling with interest.
“We have a lot of people outside of the Wharton campus who are very interested in being part of the channel,” he said. One example is the new show, “Dot Complicated,” hosted by Randi Zuckerberg (sister of Facebook founder Mark) on Mondays at 5 p.m.
Other shows include “The Wharton Sports Business Show,” “Work and Life,” “Women @ Work” and “Marketing Matters.” (For the full list and schedule, visit the SiriusXM Business Radio page.)
Watch the Business Radio Powered by the Wharton School promo video to gain a better sense for what channel 111 is all about.
Greenstein spoke at the ribbon-cutting ceremony held on campus on Sept. 18, commemorating the opening of the station’s new studio in Huntsman Hall. Add the studio to our list, by the way, signaling Business Radio’s staying power and the School’s commitment to it. The brand-new studio was constructed on time and on budget over the summer of 2014. It even features windows that look out onto Locust Walk, allowing students and other passers-by to peer in and witness live broadcasts.
— WhartonBusinessRadio (@BizRadio111) September 22, 2014
The Business Radio studio in action.
The studio wouldn’t have been possible without the support of two alumni—Dan Schwab, W’91, and Bill Conner, WG’87.
Conner, who attended the ribbon-cutting, is not only a financial supporter; he’s been a listener from the get-go. The Wharton MBA for Executives graduate will also be hosting a new cybersecurity program called “Hacked” starting on November 13, from 1 to 2 p.m. The inaugural show will feature heavyweight guests Michael Chertoff, who served as the second Secretary of Homeland Security under President George W. Bush; Chad Sweet, co-founder of the Chertoff Group; and Charles Morgan, founder of Acxiom Corp. and current executive chairman of PrivacyStar.
Though Conner enjoys all the programming, particularly the technology and marketing shows, one Business Radio episode in particular has stuck to his memory—a segment on snake venom and all its potential beneficial uses.
“You get the best professors in the world with some of the best subject-matter experts … it’s continuing education on my radio,” Conner explained about the content in general, adding that he enjoys the format as an alum, an ex-CEO and just as someone trying to find something interesting to listen to.That’s the potential that Greenstein is also seeing realized—a channel devoted to business education and touching on issues and questions confronted by people running companies in the real world.
“It’s a practical channel that can morph every day with what goes on in the real business world and yet, at the same time, give practical advice,” he said.
It’s also a channel where the dean of the Wharton School can pop into the studio and discuss sports business (and just plain sports) with fellow professors, as he did one day early in the school year.
“Massive fun,” Garrett exclaimed about the diversion.
Here’s to growing the list of reasons why alumni and other listeners enjoy, learn from and embrace Business Radio in the foreseeable future.