A Quiet Force in Lafayette Radio Calls It a Career
Chances are you have spent time with Mike Grimsley. You may not have known it, but anytime you have listened to Lafayette radio in your car, at your desk or at your home, you have been with Mike Grimsley. He is the Market President and Chief Revenue Officer for Townsquare Media Lafayette. It’s a role he’s held since 1994.
Last month, Grimsley announced he is retiring from the job that he has defined in the Lafayette community. His decision will become official this week on July 31st, and it’s quite a legacy he is leaving behind.
Mike Grimsley is the patriarch of our family which lives at 1749 Bertrand Drive. His staff would say he is an involved, active and supportive force who has guided them through the changing demands of the industry. The brands you know as 97.3 The Dawg, HOT 107.9, 99.9 KTDY, News Talk 96.5 KPEL, Classic Rock 105.1, ESPN 1420 and TalkRadio960 are the public proof of his efforts. He has had a hand in developing local talent and local shows such as The Breakfast Jam, Classic Country Saturday Night, The Polyester Power Hour, The Ross Report and more. He has also been instrumental in attracting well-known national talents such as Rush Limbaugh, Walton, and Johnson, and Delilah to complement our local efforts in Acadiana. Finally, it is Mike who solidified the relationship between Townsquare Media and UL Lafayette sports, creating a commitment to air games on our brands.
Mike would tell you none of that matters. He would say what’s important is having a connection with the community and actively working to make it better. The service awards are too many to list, but I’ll mention the most recent: a presentation by the US Marines showing his commitment to the support of veterans and veteran issues.
The problem with communication is the illusion it has taken place.
More than anything, Mike Grimsley knows how to break through tension to get things done. As stated above, it's all about communicating and that good communications always gets things done. It’s been the key to his success as a leader and at the negotiating table. Any uncomfortable situation can usually be melted away with a Mike Grimsley ‘dad’ joke. He’s started every day that I’ve worked for him with one of those jokes in the lobby. (Life tip: If you run into him, ask “What did the three-legged dog say when he walked up to the bar?”)
As a Brand Manager, I often think the most important thing I can do is prepare my staff to run the stations and websites without me. (In theory, we could all be hit by a bus…) Mike has done this and more to prepare the team to succeed. He has been there for everything from up books to down books, weddings to divorces, new babies to funerals. That’s why Townsquare Media of Lafayette is an outlier when it comes to long-term employment. Media companies are notorious for being ‘revolving doors,’ but when you walk the halls at TSM Lafayette it’s common to come across someone who has worked for Mike for over 20 years.
Don’t lie. Don’t steal. Don’t say it’s not my job.
Listed above are three of Mike’s steadfast rules to live by. It’s simple, clear and should be a message for new managers trying to make their way.
Brad Burley will assume the role of Market President. He is more than capable of carrying on Mike’s legacy. Burley is the current Market President of Townsquare Media Lake Charles and brings a wealth of experience, including time spent on Mike’s sales team in Lafayette.
You may see these billboards around Lafayette this week. They are the work of Lamar Advertising- the company that first moved Mike to Lafayette.
Mike, thank you for making Townsquare Media one of the best places in the world to work. Your kindness, your willingness to teach, and the level at which you care for your employees has changed lives. We are all the better for it.