Cindy Timchal is the head coach for the women’s lacrosse team at the United States Naval Academy.  She is the NCAA’s all-time leader in career wins (535) for division I women’s college lacrosse. She has won eight national championships, seven of which were won consecutively while at University of Maryland. And as coach at The Naval Academy women’s lacrosse team, she became the first coach to lead a service academy women’s team to a Final Four. She’s been named national coach of the year twice.

 

Some interesting insights from this episode:

  • After they started winning a lot, they stopped thinking about winning and focused more on the journey.
  • They treated their opponents as a partnership. If their opponents beat them, they would be teaching them a lesson of how they weren’t doing things very well.
  • She called the style of play “relaxed intensity”. If you’re not tight and anxious and can just be in the moment, the intensity will rise on its own.
  • She used a sports psychologist and spiritual advisor to help her team with the mental aspect of the game. It was helpful in building self-confidence, for even the most talented players have self-doubt.
  • This spiritual advisor had an expression: “Slowing down is sometimes faster than speeding up.”
  • Mistakes are part of sports but it’s what you do after the mistake that makes all the difference.

Will Guidara is the former co-owner of Eleven Madison Park and the NoMad, and is the cofounder of the Welcome Conference, an annual hospitality symposium. In 2017, Eleven Madison Park was voted the world’s best restaurant by The World’s 50 Best Restaurants annual ranking.  He has coauthored four cookbooks, was named one of Crain’s New York Business’s 40 Under 40, and is a recipient of WSJ Magazine’s Innovator Award. His new book is called Unreasonable Hospitality: The Remarkable Power of Giving People More Than They Expect.

 

Some interesting insights from this episode:

  • Unreasonable hospitality is being just as relentless, as focused, as intentional in your pursuit of how you make people feel as you are with every other facet of what you do for a living.
  • One of our most deeply held needs as human beings is we want to feel known and seen.
  • One of Will’s favorite quotes that speaks to hospitality is one from Maya Angelou: “People will forget what you say. They’ll forget what you do. But they’ll never forget how you made them feel.”
  • “If you don’t understand the importance of your work, the nobility of what you put out into the world every day, it’s very hard to be the best version of yourself consistently.”
  • He has kept a paperweight on his desk since he was a child which reads: “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?” If you don’t have the confidence and conviction to answer it honestly, it’s unlikely you’ll ever achieve it.
  • Whenever you’re leading a group of people, it’s one thing to have a good idea. It’s meaningless if you can’t convey that idea to your team such that you’re all moving in unison and in the same direction.
  • It’s important to be both “restaurant smart” and “corporate smart”. That is, balancing what’s best for the guests with what’s best for the bottom line.
  • To become the number one restaurant in the world, he had to balance a culture of excellence with a culture of unreasonable hospitality.
  • “If you are not being as intentional, as relentless, and as unreasonable about how you make people feel as you are about whatever product you make or service you offer, you are leaving extraordinary opportunities on the table.”

 

Notes:

Book: Unreasonable Hospitality: The Remarkable Power of Giving People More Than They Expect

The Welcome Conference

David Copperfield is a magician and entertainer, best known for his combination of storytelling and illusion, and described by Forbes as the most commercially successful magician in history.  His illusions have included the disappearance of a Learjet, the vanishing and reappearance of the Statue of Liberty, levitating over the Grand Canyon, walking through the Great Wall of China, escaping from Alcatraz prison, and flying on stage.  He has received 21 Emmy Awards, 11 Guinness World Records, a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, a knighthood by the French government, and the Living Legend award by the US Library of Congress.  You can watch him live performing 7 days a week at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas.

 

Some interesting insights from this episode:

  • While he’s passionate about magic and one of the greatest magicians ever, at heart he is a storyteller. He is a multidimensional entertainer.
  • His role models growing up weren’t other magicians but actors and dancers like Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire. And storytellers like Walt Disney.
  • He likes to make audiences feel something in the heart, not just a challenge in the brain.
  • To this day he is inspired by a quote he read as a kid: “You’re only as good as you dare to be bad.” You can’t do something unique and special without taking some risks along the way.
  • The formula for his success is summarized with his mantra: “Passion, preparation, and persistence.”
  • He still has imposture syndrome at times which pushes him to continue to keep trying to perfect his craft.
  • “Excellence is about nothing ever being finished. It’s a process that never ends.”

Jimmy Burrows has directed more than one thousand episodes of sitcom television and has earned eleven Emmy Awards and five Directors Guild of America Awards. In 1974 he began his television career directing episodes of The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Bob Newhart Show, and Laverne and Shirley. He became the resident director on Taxi and co-created Cheers, directing 243 of the 273 episodes, as well as all 246 episodes of Will and Grace. He has directed the pilots of multiple episodes of Frasier, Friends, Mike & Molly, the pilots of Two and a Half Men and The Big Bang Theory, and hundreds of other shows.  His new book is titled: Directed by James Burrows: Five Decades of Stories from the Legendary Director of Taxi, Cheers, Frasier, Friends, Will & Grace, and More.

 

Some interesting insights from this episode:

  • He operates with kindness. Everyone has to row together and pull equally with everyone else. He doesn’t allow ego to get in the way.
  • He has the perfect temperament for TV directing. He doesn’t lose his temper, he’s patient, he has low ego, and he knows how to encourage others.
  • He feels as a director it’s important to “die with your boots on”. That is, to try to do something to make a difference.  To provide input to make the best show possible.
  • When deciding whether to work on a show, he likes to meet with the writer and have him/her defend themselves but not be defensive.
  • When asked about same-sex marriage, then Vice President Joe Biden said, “I think Will & Grace probably did more to educate the American public than almost anything anybody’s ever done so far. People fear that which is different. Now they’re beginning to understand.”
  • His success is attributed to his ability to create a harmony on the set so everyone’s involved in making the show better. On his sets, you have to check your ego at the door.
  • “Excellence is to try to be the best you can be in your particular field.”

 

Notes:

Book: Directed by James Burrows: Five Decades of Stories from the Legendary Director of Taxi, Cheers, Frasier, Friends, Will & Grace, and More

Marshall Goldsmith has been recognized as the world’s leading executive coach and has advised more than 200 major CEOs and their management teams. He is the New York Times bestselling author of many books, including What Got You Here Won’t Get You There, Mojo, and Triggers. His latest book is titled: The Earned Life: Lose Regret, Choose Fulfillment.

 

Some interesting insights from this episode:

  • Basing success strictly on results is a fool’s game. The Buddhist term for this is The Hungry Ghost – always eating but never full.
  • Success should be defined as: Are you doing something that is connected to your higher aspirations, are you doing that’s meaningful, and do you enjoy the process.
  • He pioneered the 360 feedback process which includes taking personal references away from the office to truly understand someone’s character.
  • What separate the great from the exceptional leaders are courage, humility, and discipline.
  • “We are living an earned life when the choices, risks, and effort we make in each moment align with an overarching purpose in our lives, regardless of the eventual outcome.”
  • To have a good life, we need to align our aspirations, our ambitions and our actions. Most executives you coach get stuck on the ambition phase.
  • “Excellence is focusing on achievement that’s consistent with something that’s meaningful to you and something you enjoy.”

 

Notes:

The Earned Life: Lose Regret, Choose Fulfillment

What Got You Here Won’t Get Your There: How successful people become even more successful

Marshall Goldsmith website

100 Coaches

Bertrand Piccard is a psychiatrist and explorer and made history by accomplishing two aeronautical firsts – flying around the world non-stop in a balloon, and more recently in a solar-powered airplane without fuel. As Chairman of the Solar Impulse Foundation, he has succeeded in his mission to select 1000 profitable solutions to protect the environment and support clean growth.

 

Some interesting insights from this episode:

  • Meeting the astronauts as a kid opened his eyes that anyone with a passion who wanted to achieve their dreams could do it.
  • When reflecting on his decision to become an explorer, he knew there had to be new frontiers yet to be discovered. “It’s like a compass showing the unknown, showing what has never been done.”
  • The writer Paulo Coelho once said: “If you believe that adventure is dangerous, try routine. It is deadly.”
  • He would perform self-hypnosis to relax when stressed and stay awake and vigilant while flying through the night.
  • “Our life depends on the way we think. Once we’re aware of that, we’re free to think in every direction.”
  • Failing so quickly and in such a public way on his first around the world balloon attempt liberated him, as he learned to no longer care what others thought.
  • Why did they succeed in the around the world balloon flight when so many others failed? They never failed twice for the same reason.
  • It took 13 years to complete the around the world solar flight starting with the initial announcement. While there were moments of doubt, that doubt allowed them to continue to refine their approach, adjust course, and surmount obstacles along the way.

Gary White is the cofounder and CEO of Water.org and WaterEquity. In 1991 he launched WaterPartners International, the nonprofit that would later become Water.org. Today the organizations he leads are creating market driven solutions to the global water crisis, driving innovations in the way the world funds water and sanitation projects.  His new book that he co-authored with Matt Damon is titled: The Worth of Water: Our Story of Chasing Solutions to the World’s Greatest Challenge.

 

Some interesting insights from this episode:

  • In many parts of the world, families are paying upwards of 25% of their income to procure water and sanitation.
  • This is a problem that disproportionally impacts women and girls.
  • Microloans are a much more scalable solution to solving the water crisis than grants.
  • 99% of all microloans Water.org provides get paid back in full and on time.
  • To solve the global water crisis, 750 million people will need access to water and 1.7 billion will need access to sanitation.
  • Matt Damon taught Gary how to be a more effective storyteller.
  • “Excellence is doing the very best that you’re capable of doing and always striving to do better with what you have.”

 

Show Notes

Book: The Worth of Water: Our Story of Chasing Solutions to the World’s Greatest Challenge

Organizations: Water.org  WaterEquity

Where to Donate: Water.org donations

Chef Andre Rush is a retired decorated combat Veteran known worldwide as the White House chef with the 24-inch biceps and for his advocacy for military service, as well as suicide prevention, which is why he does 2,222 push-ups a day: to bring awareness to the ongoing epidemic of mental health and suicidal ideation.  His new book is titled: Call me Chef, Dammit!: A Veteran’s Journey from the Rural South to the White House.

Some interesting insights from this episode:

  • “I don’t care what I have done. It’s what I’m doing right now and what I’m going to continue to do.”
  • “You don’t decide your destiny. Your destiny decides you.”
  • “Cooking is like art. You eat with your eyes. And when you see art, it draws you to it.”
  • He was very determined and found a way to feed off the negativity and use it as fuel.
  • He uses cooking as a coping mechanism for his PTSD.
  • At one point he gave away all his money to help bring Ethiopian refugees to the United States.
  • “Excellence is doing everything you need to do at your very best.”

Show Notes

Book: Call Me Chef, Dammit!: A Veteran’s Journey from the Rural South to the White House

Meal Delivery Service: CHOW

Website: Chef Rush