Today Business Week’s Jon Fine has a bunch of advice for new Tribune Co. owner Sam Zell. It’s all about how to make the most of his recent acquisition and includes counsel like “Outsource all printing,” “Don’t fall for the mirage of synergy,” and “Don’t be afraid of price hikes.” Very technical stuff, and probably very useful. But come on. Zell is a new media baron. He has much more important changes to worry about, like how to change his personal life and habits in order to fit the role! Not just anybody can be a press lord. It takes a specific breed of crotchety old men with unique sexual proclivities and horrendous progeny to fit the bill. So we’ve come up with some advice for Zell that has actual practical applications. Without further ado:
• Dump your wife of many years and immediately marry a much younger, much more Asian version.
• Pit your children against one another in a battle to become your heir apparent, in which none have any hope of winning.
• Start getting mad about Israel.
• Get to work on that gin-blossom look.
• Begin hanging around with Tom Wolfe or an equivalent writer who will fictionalize you and talk appropriately about your masculinity.
• Get anointed as a member of the Order of Letters or Knights of the Garter from a foreign nation. Then insist upon being called “Lord.”
• Pick a nemesis, preferably one whose company is already weakening. Then attack!
• Sleep with Jane Fonda. If possible, make her feel bad about herself.
Come on, Sammy! Get started! Those kids won’t disinherit themselves!
You’ve Got Tribune. Now Do Something [Business Week]