Curtis Symonds on Learning Leadership

October 17, 2018

Curtis joins us on this week’s episode of the Intentional Performers podcast. Curtis is an assistant basketball coach at Paul VI. Curtis is a special guy who basically volunteers as a basketball coach at Paul VI. Curtis has a background in cable, and worked at ESPN for a number of years, and then worked at BET and helped BET build out their programming. He will share how he went from managing 1-2 people to managing 150 people, and he will talk about his leadership style in this podcast. He also worked for the Washington Mystics, and will talk about how he went from being a sales and marketing guy to learning how to manage operations of a professional basketball team. Curtis is passionate about basketball, community, and giving back to the youth.

In this episode, they discuss where his energy comes from (5:50), how he knew he could play college basketball after not playing high school basketball (10:30), his mom’s reaction to him saying he was going to walk-on to the college basketball team (13:30), the role his dad played in his life (15:00), the value his parents passed down to him (17:10), what it feels like to think about joining a hall of fame (19:40), what makes a great team (21:10), what gets in the way of making teams successful (23:10), his thoughts on how far talent can take you (26:20), how his leadership style changed at BET (31:30), the values that he looks for when hiring (34:05), how he thinks about building something out for a specific group of people (36:20), what his days were like at BET (41:00), what it was like transitioning from sports to music (47:05), his experience with the Mystics (49:05), what it was like going from being an expert to a novice (50:30), why he is so involved with Paul VI (52:30), if he’s noticed a change in kids today compared to 15 years ago (56:30), how important the environment is for being successful (1:03:00)

Thank you to Curtis for coming on the show. He is building a digital network around Historical Black Colleges called the HBCUX Classic Sports Network to help with the lack of exposure for HBCU’s. The goal of this network is to give these schools more exposure and get more student-athletes to these schools. Curtis truly cares about people and has had an amazing impact on Paul VI, and we thank him for coming on the podcast.

Lastly, if you liked this episode and/or any others, please support us at Patreon or follow me on Twitter: @brianlevenson or Instagram: @Intentional_Performers.

Thanks for listening.

-Brian

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Mike Ganino on A Culture of Yes, And

October 10, 2018

Mike joins us on this week’s episode of the podcast. Mike is a culture and story-telling expert who helps executives, teams, and thought leaders communicate, connect, and engage. Mike shares his story which includes working in restaurants, working as a flight attendant, and how he developed an appreciation for culture. He wrote the book “Company Culture for Dummies” and has been named a top 30 culture speaker by Global Guru. Mike uses his high energy to re-write the stories that are happening within a company’s culture. Mike is also the head performance coach at Heroic Public Speaking, and he’ll talk about what he’s shared with others to help them develop their mind for public speaking.

In this episode, they discuss why culture is something he’s been interested in (6:05), what it was like to be a flight attendant (10:50), how his family reacted to him dropping out of school to become an actor (14:10), his mom’s impact on his life (20:00), how he prepared to perform for improv (22:20), what it was like working at Potbelly’s (25:20), what he believes is the source of culture (32:40), how he finds out the beliefs in a company (35:45), what he does for companies that aren’t clear on culture (40:15), how technology has changed how he thinks about culture and story-telling (44:05), what percentage of culture is based on science vs. art (50:50), how he sets his mind for public speaking (56:40), how he prepares to best serve his audience (1:00:20), what he does to ensure he’s taking care of himself (1:03:25), why “say yes, and” is meaningful for him (1:05:05).

Thank you to Mike for coming on the podcast. If you are communicating and something is not aligned with your audience, Mike is a great guy to connect with to help. You can find his book, “Company Culture for Dummies,” on Amazon, and you can also find him on http://www.mikeganino.com/. We encourage you to connect with Mike on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook as well.

Lastly, if you liked this episode and/or any others, please support us at Patreon or follow me on Twitter: @brianlevenson or Instagram: @Intentional_Performers.

Thanks for listening.

-Brian

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Neen James on Attention Pays

October 3, 2018

Neen James joins us on this week’s episode of the Intentional Performers podcast. Neen is a bundle of energy, and she brings this positivity and energy into everything that she does. She is the author of Folding Time, and Attention Pays which are fantastic books. In 2017 she was named one of the top 30 leadership speakers by Global Guru. Neen brings boundless energy and offers very tangible solutions to give you ways you can use what she’s talking about into your everyday life.

In this episode, they discuss the moment when attention became something she was interested in (4:40), what she was doing in the productivity world (7:50), where her desire to become an achiever came from (11:05), how religion played a role in her life (17:20), her curiosity about her biological father (19:30), how she transitioned out of the corporate world (25:05), if she was someone that always wanted to work for herself (29:20), where her confidence comes from (34:10), the systems she’s created (36:00), how to increase your ideas and creativity (39:40), how her writing has improved since she first began doing it (43:50), how she views new ideas (46:30), why speaking is her passion (49:15), what 4 am rehearsing looks like for her (50:10), her thoughts on people being so afraid of public speaking (55:30), her thoughts on integration and balance in work and life (1:02:10), her mission and how it came to be (1:09:00), why she cares about others feeling better after speaking with her (1:10:30)

Thank you to Neen for coming on the podcast. You can check out her website out at https://neenjames.com/ and we encourage you to check her out on twitter @neenjames.   

Lastly, if you liked this episode and/or any others, please support us at Patreon or follow me on Twitter: @brianlevenson or Instagram: @Intentional_Performers.

Thanks for listening.

-Brian

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Scott Eblin on Coaching for Action

September 26, 2018

Scott Eblin is the President of the Eblin Group, a Leadership Development group committed to helping clients lead and live at their best. Scott really believes that in order for leaders to lead they have to be at their best. As a leadership expert, global speaker, and executive coach, Scott works with some of the best known companies in the world. He is also an amazing writer, and he will talk about his books in this episode. Finally, we will end our conversation talking about his journey into coaching.

In this episode, they discuss how he got into coaching and what that journey was like (5:30), why he was interested in HR (8:50), what it was like growing up in West Virginia (12:40), some of the values his parents passed down to him (14:15), what life was like for him in High School (16:20), how he thought about education growing up (18:05), how he thinks about developing curiosity (22:05), the coolest thing he’s ever gotten to do (27:20), his transition from the corporate world to coaching (29:40), the biggest change he’s seen in the executives from the time he started coaching until now (35:15), how mindfulness works with time and focus, and how he thinks about them together (37:05), how he thinks about judgment with regard to mindfulness (39:00), his thoughts on the mindset for preparation vs. performance (44:20), his habits and routines that he uses to be successful (46:15), what he thinks makes a good coach (50:30), what he does to get his mind right for his presentations (56:40), and his writing process (59:20)

Thank you to Scott for coming on the podcast. We encourage you to check out his newest book, the third edition of The Next Level, and you can find more information on that here . We also encourage you to check out his website at https://eblingroup.com/ and you can find Scott on Twitter @ScottEblin and Instagram @ScottEblin, and LinkedIn.

Lastly, if you liked this episode and/or any others, please support us at Patreon or follow me on Twitter: @brianlevenson or Instagram: @Intentional_Performers.

Thanks for listening.

-Brian

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Roman Baca on Dance and War

September 19, 2018

Roman Baca joins Brian Levenson on this week’s episode of the podcast. Roman is a classically trained ballet dancer and choreographer. In 2001, Roman recognized his desire to defend the vulnerable. He took a hiatus from his dance, and enlisted in US Marine Corps during the Iraq War. After the war, he returned back to dance and co-founded Exit 12 which is a dance company which tells veterans stories choreographically to increase cross cultural understanding and heal divisions. He also has a great TedX from TedX San Antonio. He has led choreographic workshops at schools, universities, and veteran centers to inspire military veterans, victims of war, and civilians through the power of dance. He is currently pursuing a MFA in choreography at the Trinity Laban Conservatory of Music and Dance in London.

In this episode, they discuss what life was like for him as a kid (6:40), what his relationship was like with his dad and mom (9:20), the values his mom passed down to him (11:40), what happened for him after high school (13:20), what felt different for him in dance (17:00), how he handled the search for perfection in dance (18:20), how much perfectionism plays a role in performing in dance (19:30), his mindset in preparation vs. performing (25:30), a time in his career when he learned to perform (30:50), his thoughts on if flow can be transferred (36:20), about his desire to join the military (39:30), how 9/11 played a role in his journey (43:05), the similarities in training in dance and in the military (45:15), the juxtaposition between military and ballet dance (46:50), the reaction of others in the marines when he told them his background (49:20), what he learned about himself when sharing his passion with others in the military (53:00), how has he grown and gotten better as he’s trying to transform others (1:00:40), what he would do differently in the military training process (1:04:20), if his leadership problem was his own fault (1:08:30), if there’s anything he would do differently if he were in charge of military training (1:10:10), the tools, techniques, and mantras that he uses to guide him (1:11:30), what he’s doing in London (1:14:20), what makes a great choreographer (1:18:00), what he feels and where he feels it when he talks about what he wants to accomplish (1:20:05)

Thank you to Roman for coming on the show. Roman recently choreographed a piece for the new US embassy in London, and it’s one of the first receptions with that many people. He was able to put it together with some colleagues in London and the US ambassador tweeted it out here. He also premiered a new work in progress that can be found here. We encourage you to check out the Exit 12 Dance Company website and twitter handle at @exit12danceco.

Lastly, if you liked this episode and/or any others, please support us at Patreon or follow me on Twitter: @brianlevenson or Instagram: @Intentional_Performers.

Thanks for listening.

-Brian

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Derin McMains on the Psychology of Baseball

September 12, 2018

Derin McMains joins Brian Levenson on this week’s episode of the podcast. Derin works as a mental performance coordinator for the Seattle Mariners. In his role, Derin coordinates the mental performance program for the entire organization. He works with the 40 man roster, and alongside two other colleagues that work primarily with the minor league teams. Almost all of the organizations in the MLB currently utilize a mental performance coach, and Derin is at the forefront of this profession. Derin also played minor league baseball in the San Francisco Giants organization, and he will share what it was like growing up playing baseball and what led him to becoming obsessed with the mental game.

In this episode, they discuss what life was like for him as a kid (4:40), his family dynamic (9:10), the values his parents passed down to him (10:10), when baseball came into his life (11:30), what allowed him to take the risk to become a switch-hitter (14:30), what it was like playing baseball with his brother in Junior College (18:00), his thoughts on players playing angry (21:50), his college recruiting process and how he attacks goals (26:20), how he helps athletes discover their vision (30:05), what percentage of pro athletes have a clear vision for themselves and what they want to become (32:50), how he quiets his ego when he tries to work with athletes that aren’t interested (35:30), his thoughts on thinking about what matters and what’s helpful (39:30), what percentage of his work is with people struggling with the yips vs people trying to move from good to great (40:50), his career in professional baseball and what his mindset was like playing baseball (42:00), his reaction to people saying someone is injury prone (45:50), what drew him to sport psychology (48:20), what qualities he’s noticed that people have that make them successful during games (50:10), why baseball has opened its doors to people in the sport psych world (52:30), what his sports psychology team looks like with the Mariners (56:50), what does he do to remain sharp (59:20), his background in music and the story about how he started writing music (1:01:30).

Thanks to Derin for coming on the podcast, and I encourage you to check out his twitter @McMainsDmac.

Lastly, if you liked this episode and/or any others, please support us at Patreon or follow me on Twitter: @brianlevenson or Instagram: @Intentional_Performers.

Thanks for listening.

-Brian

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Malcolm Brogdon on Believing in Myself

September 5, 2018

Malcolm Brogdon joins Brian Levenson on this week’s podcast. Malcolm was selected in the 2nd round of the 2016 NBA Draft by the Milwaukee Bucks. He was named ACC player of the year and ACC defensive player of the year at the University of Virginia. He had an amazing college career and was overlooked by every NBA team when it came to the draft. Malcolm won the rookie of the year, and he was the first player to do this as a 2nd rounder since 1956. His NBA and College accolades are phenomenal, but he’s also an amazing person. He was fortunate enough to be around civil rights activists including his grandfather and he will talk about his upbringing during this conversation.

In this episode, they discuss his background growing up in Atlanta (4:40), if there were ever times when he resisted in his upbringing (8:20), who taught him the game of basketball (9:10), his mindset and training program in high school (10:50), some of the stories he heard from his grandfather and his experience in Africa (12:40), how his parents’ divorce impacted his life (16:30), where his confidence came from (19:20), how difficult it was for him to choose UVA over Harvard (22:20), similarities between competing in the classroom and on the court, and the values his mother taught him (23:45), transition from high school to college basketball (26:10), the adversity he faced when he got injured his sophomore year (27:15), why he was able to believe in and play the long game in life/basketball (29:30), his reaction when UF doesn’t offer and when every NBA passes on him (31:30), his mindset in preparation being different than his mindset in performance (33:50), what he does to shift out of perfectionism for his performance (37:40), his yawning before games and visualization techniques (38:30), how he goes from being a 2nd round pick to rookie of the year (41:50), what was going through his mind when he began with Milwaukee (43:50), what he knows now that he didn’t when he entered the league (45:45), what he does to give his mind a rest (47:30), his competitive spirit and how that shows on the basketball court (48:40), how he defines leadership (51:20), his experience in Africa (52:40)

Thanks to Malcolm for coming on the podcast, and I encourage you to check out the non-profit he’s involved in with Chris Long called waterboys. He has started his own organization from the Chris Long foundation called Hoops 20 to help make a difference in Tanzania and East Africa.

Lastly, if you liked this episode and/or any others, please support us at Patreon or follow me on Twitter: @brianlevenson or Instagram: @Intentional_Performers.

Thanks for listening.

-Brian

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Phil Weber on Growing from Moments

August 29, 2018

Phil Weber joins Brian Levenson on this week’s podcast. Phil has spent time with Miami Heat, New York Knicks, Phoenix Suns, University of Florida, Chaminade University, Iona University, New Orleans Pelicans, and he was the Head Coach of the Sioux Falls team in the D-League. He is a basketball lifer who has coached in a number of different ways. He also worked as a player development coach from 1995-1998 where he worked with over 100 NBA players. Phil is a philosopher at heart, always reading, always writing, always learning, and he is definitely an intentional performer. He doesn’t just focus on basketball, but what concepts and ideas can make his players better on and off the floor.

In this episode, they discuss his journey into coaching (5:00), his experience being around Coach Jim Valvano (7:10), the number one value each Coach brought (8:30), one value that explains who he is as a coach (10:00), where he thinks self-belief comes from (12:10) , if persistence has ever hurt him and how it’s helped him (13:45), how he cultivated a growth mindset (21:30), when he started to devour books (25:30), his transition into the NBA (30:10), how he started doing player development (34:00), the story about Kobe walking into his gym (39:40), the coaches he got to be around throughout his professional coaching career that have inspired him (49:30), his experience being around D’Antoni and Spoelstra (56:10), how he set his mind to do the jobs he’s had (1:04:40), his thoughts on the inner circle of influence vs the outer circle (1:11:40), life’s golden nuggets and the mindset for growth (1:114:10), qualities that are common in championship teams (1:17:20), experiences or observations with the Miami Heat (1:21:30), and finally about his poetry and the writings that he has done (1:28:00)

Thanks to Phil for coming on the podcast.

Lastly, if you liked this episode and/or any others, please support us at Patreon or follow me on Twitter: @brianlevenson or Instagram: @Intentional_Performers.

Thanks for listening.

Brian

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Sam Morris on the Power of Breathing

August 22, 2018

Sam joins Brian Levenson on this week’s podcast. Sam works as a coach and speaker, and has a company called Zen Warrior Training where he helps people unlock what’s inside of them and get in touch with their feelings. Sam has a deep passion for inspiring and helping others. In this podcast, Sam talks about a number of life events including an accident that took place when he was 24 years old that was life changing.

In this episode, they discuss his childhood and how he became who he is today (4:45), the difference in what he learned from his father and mother (11:00), the relation between his childhood and what he does today (14:20), if he sees his mom and dad as Warrior or Zen (20:00), when he got into cycling (24:10), his mindset when cycling across the country (29:10), when he started playing guitar (35:50), his time at Hampshire College (41:00), his major accident in 1999 (46:30), what he remembers from the accident and the immediate feeling he experienced after (48:20), what he feels now as he rehashes the story (52:20), his mindset when in the hospital for an extended period of time (54:00), how he created a mindset to have the state of neutrality as opposed to victimhood (58:00), his thoughts on selfishness and selflessness (1:04:10), what he does to take care of himself and the diet he is currently on (1:05:30), his meditation routines and the power of the breath (1:11:40), and what Zen Warrior Training is about (1:17:50)

Thanks to Sam for coming on the podcast, and I encourage you to check out his website at http://zenwarriortraining.com/about/. You can also find Sam on twitter @zwtraining and on facebook at facebook.com/zenwarriortraining.  

Lastly, if you liked this episode and/or any others, please support us at Patreon or follow me on Twitter: @brianlevenson or Instagram: @Intentional_Performers.

Thanks for listening.

-Brian

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Eric Mangini on Football Lessons

August 15, 2018

Eric Mangini joins Brian Levenson on this week’s podcast. Eric played college football at Wesleyan, and has since spent his entire career working in football where he actually began as a coach in Australia. Eric was an assistant coach with the Cleveland Browns, Baltimore Ravens, New England Patriots, and at the age of 34, he was hired as the NY Jets Head Football Coach. After being the head coach for the NY Jets, Eric was then the head coach for the Cleveland Browns. Today, Eric works in TV and has a wealth of knowledge on culture, leadership, and mental performance.

In this episode, they discuss how he started in football, and his time coaching in Australia (4:00), how he started as a ball boy and public relations intern with the Cleveland Browns (10:30), how he began taking on jobs from Bill Belichick (16:00), what advice he would give to someone wanting to get into coaching (18:00), what lessons he learned from coaches and GM’s that he’s seen be successful (23:00), about the group of coaches on the 1995 Cleveland Browns (31:40), his thoughts on the Patriots culture and always playing the best players (35:30), what made Bill Parcells special (40:45), what traits Tom Brady had that made him successful (46:30), what he loves about football (50:05), how losing his Dad impacted his life (54:45), on the leap to becoming a head coach at 34 years old (56:20), what the lifestyle is like as an NFL head coach (1:01:30), how he’d describe his leadership style (1:10:40), on the routines he would do (1:12:10), and what’s similar about performing on TV and coaching (1:15:30).

Thanks to Eric for coming on the podcast, and I encourage you to check out his foundation at https://www.cfm-foundation.org/. This is a family foundation in honor of Eric’s father and uncle that creates opportunities for under resourced kids.

Lastly, if you liked this episode and/or any others, please support us at Patreon or follow me on Twitter: @brianlevenson or Instagram: @Intentional_Performers.

Thanks for listening.

-Brian

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