Q1.How did you hit upon this creative adventure of setting up the online Radio at WeSchool?
Being in the FM radio industry as an on-air presenter for the last three odd years, I did not want to discontinue this activity that I was so passionate about when I took admission for the MBA program at WeSchool. If you see abroad, especially in the USA and Australia almost all the colleges and universities have their own campus community radios so I thought, why not starts one in WeSchool ? Radio to me, is not just a medium of playing songs and music accompanied by entertaining chatter of the RJs but an important form of communication as it brings together a convergence of creative ideas and makes way for innovative outputs through a hi-tech platform. It is also a medium that is fast becoming a part and parcel of the psyche of modern Indian Youth
Q2. What were the challenges that you faced in getting the RadioWE team together?
We were a tiny team, people were not coming really forward to be a part of this team because they were apprehensive , they had not done anything like this before or were not confident to give it a shot ! Also when we launched the radio in February , the academic year was nearing its end and everyone was busy with exams ,projects and off course, placements ! Many of my colleagues at WeSchool had very little idea about what a campus radio is like or its relevance in today’s times.
Q 3. How did you co-ordinate with your team mates considering everyone’s hectic lecture schedules as well as the time consuming daily commutes of Mumbai ?
By working virtually via email / Phone. That helps. Each one records the audio at their homes/laptops and sends it to us. If there are corrections to be made, I guide them over the phone or at the campus. After all the audio clips are collected they are arranged in a nice flow, closely resembling the fun of the FM radio format, taking care that there is a good mix of entertainment & information ,and yes a good dose of music too !
Q 4. What were the problem areas that troubled you during the initial phase? How did you overcome them considering the fact that you started the project from a scratch, had no think tank or a back up system and still managed to put up an interesting format and contents on RadioWE?
Launching an FM requires licenses, so we thought of utilizing the free medium called the internet. Also I had only the experience of conceptualizing shows & live RJing, not that of a programming head or a sound editor. I edited and compiled the first show on my own by downloading a free software called ‘Audacity’. On my 107.1 FM job, I was used to making shows only largely for entertainment. Here I had to focus on edutainment, that too of a B-School of the stature of WeSchool. So I had to suitably match the programming format to the one that would fit in and blend in the best manner possible.
Q5: Considering that this is a leading Business school where everyone is driven to study hard, what was your motivation that kept you going? And who were the key members of WeSchool fraternity who supported you in this unique adventure?
The ideas was to create a platform for promotion of creative talent existing at WeSchool, like singers, musicians, music composers etc . It is difficult for amateurs to get an opportunity to get their compositions played on ,say TV or even FM Radio, so this radio aims at encouraging them by providing the much needed platform. With the strong backing of Prof.Kaustubh Dhargalkar, Head-Innowe, we had a meeting with Prof. Dr.Uday Salunkhe, our Group Director, who was so happy about this idea and encouraged us a lot on hearing our plan. He gave us the green signal and here we are now, the first ever Campus Radio by any B-School in Mumbai!
Also I got immense help from the tiny team that I was referring to earlier. Janya Menghrajani helped a lot especially in RJing and interviewing .Debopriyo Chakraborthy , the enthusiastic G-Sec , helped a lot in motivating and getting things done. Prof Jalpa Thakkar too helped us a lot in spreading the message, and more importantly urged us to be more professional and disciplined in every way. Prof. Chitralekha Kumar is now our guide in the absence of Prof Jalpa. We thank everyone who gave us audio content for all the shows and also the external guest bands for sharing their creative musical outputs. RadioWE couldn’t have been a reality without the contributions of all these people.
Q 5. Radiowe is now six months old. Tell us something about the Listeners’ responses and the team’s plans for the next six months.
Right now we have an enthusiastic team of freshers in place that will be taking over the activities very soon. We have learnt a lot during the period of teething troubles that we faced , but each of those pain points created new opportunities as well as spaces for innovation and we are now in the process of making a knowledge transfer plan. We have the creative team, marketing team, performers’ team etc. We have plans of playing the show on speakers in the campus more often whereas earlier we had it only once a month as a promotional activity. We plan to feature every activity happening in college on radioWE. Samvaad is one of them, for which we have already started collaborating with Stita Misra, its editor.
Q 6. How has this journey helped you to evolve as a better student, a better person, a better manager?
This was the first time I was doing something like this and it’s been a tremendous learning experience for me for sure. Apart from being the founder and programming director, I am also currently looking after its internal marketing activities which largely include popularizing the brand within WeSchool and on the social media. Yes, indeed it has sharpened my team spirit and leadership skills. Prof.Kaustubh had told me initially that an idea is just 2%; the balance is all hard work (and Hard Work!) . I am glad that we have stretched ourselves and gone from idea-to-execution, almost like a business idea that becomes a start-up.
Right now, it’s really great working with my newly founded team of enthusiastic freshers who have brought with them a diversity of backgrounds, work experiences and know-how. I am sure with a strong and committed team at its helm; RadioWE is all set to reach greater heights in the times to come.