A “Must See” TV Show for Leaders
There is only one show I have found that transcends the depressing ratings-driven TV programming. It is a show that offers viewers a truly engaging and thought provoking look into the inner workings of the most interesting leaders from around the world.
You guessed it…it’s the Charlie Rose show.
For several years now, I have recorded all of Charlie’s shows on DVR (featured on both PBS and Bloomberg). When I have a chance to watch them, I usually have my laptop ready to take notes.
I have learned so much from Charlie Rose and the guests he brings. A few months ago he featured a curator from the Morgan Museum in New York featuring an exhibit on Winston Churchill. Because of that show I was fortunate enough to visit that museum and see a truly amazing exhibit of a great leader.
These are two reasons why I like Charlie’s show:
- He brings on the most interesting guests – authors, thinkers, founders of great companies and great restaurants, Broadway actors, and innovators to name a few. He recently interviewed Salman Khan – the young founder of Khan Academy – the organization that is trying to teach children on the Internet all over the world. He brings on people you will not see anywhere else on TV.
- The way Charlie engages his guests is so personal, captivating, and informative – I really think he is the best interviewer out there today. He is always very prepared. When you hear him interviewing someone you feel like you truly know the inner workings of that person’s psyche.
And that brings me to make a comment about television. While I realize that TV is powered by a capitalist force – Ratings (the more people who watch, the more advertisements are sold, the more money is generated) – I lament the choice of what is shown.
Just like businesses should not make it their only goal to earn profits, TV shows should not make it their only goal to get the highest ratings.
Where is the social responsibility to the public good?
Have you noticed how TV networks were dominated this week by stories of Jodi Arias’ murder trial? While 25,000 people die of hunger daily around the world, on our TV stations we just hear the sordid details of a murder by a deranged person – and that is our news!
I call on us today to demand more from our TV stations. It is our duty to ask for more!
So I call on better leadership in the TV profession!
Give us more substance and more depth. Take your powerful platform to not only inform and entertain, but to transform our capacities to think and imagine. Don’t hold our attention by mere gimmicks, where the technique to keep us from turning the channel is because we want to know “how this murder was solved.”
Hold our attention by intriguing our mind and respecting our intellect.
On a related note, I also lament the caliber of people on our stations. While I am not opposed to seeing attractive people on TV, it seems that this has suddenly become a criteria more important than intellectual depth.
One of my hopes is to one day meet Charlie Rose in person. But in the meantime…to Charlie: “Thank you for withstanding the forces of unprecedented shallowness and giving us consistent quality and depth – your viewers are better people because of your work.”
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