Some things have worked for Channel 4 - Homeland has been a much needed drama success (albeit imported). Plane Crash was a huge success but unfortunately just a one off. 24 Hours in A&E, One Born Every Minute, Coppers and 999: What's Your Emergency all did well as did the Bouncers pilot. The Paralympics were a big success for them.
But comedy is a mess, drama is non-existent and they're extremely short on entertainment. They seem unsure what to do on Fridays - at one point things seemed to move back there (comedy and panel shows) then a lot of it moved away again. And yes, I think they misfired by not getting The Voice.
One of the big issues for Channel 4 is the sheer volume of commissioning that goes on. They've got 8-11pm wide open all year round whereas BBC1/ITV1 need only worry about the 9pm slot for most of the year. So I do think it's a tough job. They've got that scenario where they're constantly launching new shows. It's difficult for them to make a sustained push on one show.
Keep lifestyle, body image, fashion, property and most cooking stuff to the 8pm hour.
From 9pm I'd take one night (probably not Friday) and have a 90 minute or 120 minute comedy block with 30 minute sitcoms all together instead of the current situation where they'll pop up all over the place.
One night for entertainment stuff (9pm-10.30pm) - if Sky1 can get 1.3m for Got To Dance there's no reason Channel 4 shouldn't be able to put together a big shiney floor show and find an audience for it.
One night for drama - a UK drama and a US drama perhaps.
One night for all their ob docs (One Born, 24 Hours...) and some documentary specials.
Friday for gameshows, panel shows and chatshows. Try and launch new gameshows and chatshows to sit alongside MPD and Alan Carr.
Films on Sunday.
Now I just need to find a hit entertainment format, a hit gameshow or two to slot share with Million Pound Drop, a few successful sitcoms and Channel 4's first UK hit drama in years. Should be easy...