Spark Your Creativity and Innovate Today with Michael Hendrix & Panos Panay

In today’s episode, we cover the power of music and listening with Panos A. Panay and R. Michael Hendrix. Panay is a Cypress-born entrepreneur and educator, Hendrix is an American graphic designer and entrepreneur, and both are the authors of Two Beats Ahead: What Musical Minds Teach Us About Innovation, featuring interviews with some of the top creative geniuses of our time.

Some of the best music humans create comes from collaborative work between artists, but why is collaboration so important, what should you avoid when collaborating with others on any project, and why is it important to focus on the process of creating something just as much as the end product? 

What to Listen For

  • The Power of Listening – 0:00 
  • What is the difference between hearing music and listening to it?
  • Why is the silence between notes more important than the notes themselves?
  • What creative acts do design and music have in common?
  • What are you NOT doing if you feel like you run out of things to talk about in a conversation?
  • The Power of Collaboration – 16:45 
  • What great approaches to collaboration can you use in your life and business to come up with new ideas?
  • Why are trust and respect so important when pursuing collaborative opportunities with individuals and groups?
  • What is missing from project based learning that can lead to a total failure for the teams working on the projects?
  • What can you do if you find yourself on a team with people you don’t like or get along with?
  • What conversation are professional organizations and businesses not having and why is it killing the effectiveness of project teams?
  • Process Focused vs Outcome Focused – 29:38
  • Why is it more important to focus on the process of creating something rather than just the end result?
  • How do you work with individuals who refuse to compromise when working on collaborative projects?
  • What mistake do many companies make when trying to find collaboration opportunities?
  • How do you bring out the individuality in your team members to get the best of the collaboration?

Humans have likely been creating music for as long as we have been around. And the process of making music can teach us about the values that define humanity. The value of not just the notes, but the silence between them – both contribute to the sound of the music we love and hate. Similarly, it’s important for humans to have periods of rest in between periods of effort because in those periods of rest and boredom are when we come up with some of our best ideas. Those periods of rest between intense workouts are when our bodies get stronger. We cannot live fulfilling lives by simply resting all the time nor can we by working all the time. Balance is important in all things.

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Resources from this Episode

Speaker 1: Sometimes you're so hell bent on what you think your company is doing, that you don't pay attention to what your customers are saying you should be doing. So that's how we've been sort of using this concept of listening as perhaps the most integral part to innovation, to entrepreneurial-ism. And ultimately for me to all creation,

Speaker 2: Welcome back to the art of charm podcast, a show designed to help you win at work love, and life. Now we know you have what it takes to reach your full potential, and that's why every week we share with you interviews and strategies to help you develop the right social skills and mindsets to succeed. You shouldn't have to settle for anything less than extraordinary I'm AIJ and I'm Johnny, before we get started, quick question for you. Have you heard this month toolbox episode on emotional bids, if not pause this right now and download that episode, it is straight fire. We've been getting fantastic feedback on social media, as well as from our podcast fans and our emails. And we even put together a special download to accompany this episode, to help you master connection with anyone, you can find this special [email protected] slash bids, B I D S grab that free download and check out the toolbox episode.

Speaker 2: You will not be disappointed now. Thank you everyone for tuning in let's kick off today's interview today. We're here with Michael Hendrix and Panos Panay, and with them, we're going to explore what makes musicians good problem solvers leaders and entrepreneurs, as well as what we can learn from them. They're the authors of two beats ahead, which just came out and in that book, they describe why musicians actually hold the keys to innovation. And I can tell you is very excited for this one. I thought it'd be fun to just talk a little bit about what your first music memory is that shaped your life. And I'll go first. Cause I don't normally share this on the show, but growing up with a single dad, my first real music experience was the summer in Michigan and my dad rolling down all the windows in our car and her family sedan and turning up the volume on Eric Clapton's Layla and singing every single word of that song, just as gleeful as could be. And I just remember him being so happy and starting to realize just how music was so powerful for him to evoke that emotion and that memory will forever stay with me. So I was curious what your first musical memories are and how the shape.

Speaker 1: I grew up going to church with my family, both my parents play piano and sing. And so if my mom wasn't playing piano at the church, you know, my dad was singing in the choir and I learned music that way. So to speak, uh, learned about harmonies and orchestration arrangements and all, but what moved me was, um, the first record I ever bought, which was Joan Jett and the Blackhearts. I love rock and roll. And I just remember the first one, I hear those cores like done, uh, done. Uh, it was like it made something inside me shake and I had to have it. It was so raw. I still love that song to this day. I think it's an amazing song. Great song. She was,

Speaker 3: I just did a, a bit where I was discussing how she was my first crush, which is probably why everything went sideways, but wonderful. I can, I can relate Panas, which she got from,

Speaker 1: Well, for me, I grew up in Cyprus, which actually is where I am right now by coincidence. I remember turning on the TV. It was probably around 1978 or 79. So it was six years old. There was a black and white movie called King Creole with Elvis Presley and Walter Matthau Elvis started as this awesome baseline and be part of a song King Creole that Elvis sings is still to this day. One of my favorite songs and that trio, you know, the Elvis Presley trio, I think he was one of the most underappreciated musical trios in history because every one of those guys, DJ Fontana and Scotty Moore, they're just amazing, amazing musicians. And so is Elvis. And I just don't think you often get the credit that you should be as a musician. So that is my first childhood sort of musical experience that frankly sent me down to a path of wanting to move to America and wanting to be music Elvis.

Speaker 3: So I had been responsible for a lot of people wanting to move to America and playing music. We can certainly see his influence on the Beatles and everyone else who had followed. I loved hearing that and Scotty Moore, Oh yes. The backup musicians, ridiculous Elvis doesn't get enough credit. As you mentioned. I think his hips get more credit than him, but he was just as comparable as a musician as the rest of those guys for myself, it was it's difficult for me to pinpoint this because I grew up in a musical family. Music was a big part of my household. My dad played in bands. They played and rehearsed at my house. They played at the, uh, the, the club on the weekends. And because of that, there was always a radio on or there was where her muscles, there was always musical instruments in the house.

Speaker 3: However, when I heard Aja asked this question, I can definitely pinpoint the first time music moved me in a way that was feelings that I've never had felt before we use in the summertime. We, as kids would do way play pickup games with the other neighbor kids. And I remember playing outside the neighbors playing football and the local radio rock radio station was on. And they were playing purple haze by Jimmy Hendrix. And for whatever reason, when the guitar riff started. And I remember having feelings and being moved in such a way that I had never experienced before, and I wanted a lot more of that and that radio couldn't go any louder. And of course, following that because I, that had led me to wanting to play the guitar and wanting to recreate those sounds and the feelings that I had inside and the feelings there was some that I didn't know what they were because they were more of sexual tones that were sort of brought out in those moments. But I also felt invincible. I felt immortal. I felt myself becoming a larger from enveloping, those colors and tones that basically the rest of my life was, was written in that, in that moment.

Speaker 2: What I love about all of these anecdotes and the anecdotes in the book, as well as just the powerful impact of listening and Johnny often in our growing the business over the last 15 years uses a lot of music metaphors around. You're not hearing it, you're not listening properly. And I'm really curious to unpack what you both have learned from musicians and listening, especially when it comes to being innovative in business, because that's such a powerful skill that I think is so under appreciated and underdeveloped in a lot of members in our audience,

Speaker 1: We are in an era right now where I think there was a lot of broadcasting and not enough receiving. It tends to sort of mask in many ways, the critical importance of just paying attention as an entrepreneur. I think I always thought as a musician because I am a musician by training when you're playing music. And especially if you play jazz, when you get lost in the core changes, as they say, what do you do? You just sort of like, hang back and just stop you pay attention. And you almost recalibrate where you are. And in my entrepreneurial journey, there were many times when I did find myself down a path where I did get lost. And I think it was that instinct of, okay, let me just pause for a minute, pay attention to what's happening around me. And I mean really pay attention and then start jamming again.

Speaker 1: And in many ways, I think we're, we're, we're taught the other way around. And many of us tend to talk our way out of deals. We we're taught. We tend to talk our, our way out of jobs. So knowing when to talk, when to lead, but also when you just hang back and pay attention either to the conversation you're having to the person that's talking or to the situation that's at hand is of critical nature. And in the book, we talk about miles Davis and how you literally did play notes as if they cost a whole lot of money. And he believed that the silence is even more important than the actual notes themselves. So for me, it's always been, what are you not saying as much as what are you saying? Or what's not being stated as much as what is stated that counts

Speaker 3: Panas, perhaps, you know, this story with miles it's with Herbie Hancock when he had first joined the group and Herbie was just very excited to be performing at a level with these people that he had looked up to and thought were the pinnacle of performing. And I guess there was a maybe, you know, the story better, but there was a live performance and an Herbie had played some wrong notes and he freaks out and he was so worried about what miles was going to say afterwards. And what would the repercussions of this? Because of course, miles was known as a hard core musician and guy when it came to those performances and Herbie didn't really notice anything that was going on, except that the, some of the tones that miles was playing had shifted and changed. And after the gig, Herbie was very nervous waiting to get chewed out and nothing ever came of it.

Speaker 3: And Herbie wanted to know, perhaps maybe miles didn't catch it and said something just to see. And miles basically just said, well, you didn't hear me change the whole key of that section because of the notes that you played. He said, and it was basically, you need to start listening from our work that we've done here at the art of charm over the years. One of the biggest complaints that most of the guys have is I run out of things to say, or I'm always so quiet in a conversation and it drives me nuts. I want to be vocal. We'll all the answers. And all, everything that you need to say is in the other person, if you just take a moment to listen to what they have to say, you always have something to say, you'll always be able to contribute. We don't spend enough time stopping and listening to what's going on. And, and Bjork is a great example. She was able to use those sounds to create some of the most beautiful songs.

Speaker 1: Well, and another way to think about it as of rural biased towards action. And even as an entrepreneur, you are conditioned to think that it's all about what you do, but it's often what you decide not to do that actually determines your fate. So it's another way to look at this idea of playing and silence of listening and talking of doing or not doing it's the space that's many times determines where the opportunity is more so than the other areas that you're so busy filling, if you will. And I had to learn this lesson time, and again, as an entrepreneur, whether it was the earlier thing that I said to you before of, you know, yes, you can talk your way out of a deal you already had. And it happened to me and all of us, right? And then also sometimes you're so hell bent on what you think your company is doing, that you don't pay attention to what your customers are saying you should be doing. So that's how we've been sort of using this concept of listening as perhaps the most integral part to innovation, to entrepreneurial-ism. And ultimately for me, tool all creation.

Speaker 2: I really enjoyed that point because yes, we're thinking about innovation from the teams that we're on and the company that we're leading, but that innovation is also spurred by our customers, our clients, our audience, and the feedback that they're giving us, Hey, this is working, this isn't working. This is what I wanted. This is what I need. And if we are to your point, exactly, hell bent on proving our point, winning that argument, having the most facts, data accolades, we're missing that feedback loop that generates the innovation that we're all after.

Speaker 1: Again, we're conditioned to look at customers as sort of this passively receptive audience to our creation, but every good musician knows that in every show that you go, that audience is a unique audience and that unique moment of time. And they're ultimately co-creating with you, that experience that you're both sharing, it's not about you creating an experience of their passively, just receiving it. That moment in time is generated by both audience and creator. I've always believed that business is the same way your customers, especially in a post-industrial era, in a digital era, your customer is every bit as much of a co-creator of the product that you're putting out there as you are, as the inventor. So again, for us, it goes back to these musical concepts that we're articulating in two beats ahead about this instinct that they have for listening, for collaborating for co-creating, that we believe is so applicable to, to innovation. And certainly these are concepts that we experienced firsthand in our journeys.

Speaker 2: I'd love to unpack the collaboration angle a bit more. I feel that listening is certainly a component of that, much of the music that I think of that is timeless. That is transcending of genres is when you have these completely different perspectives and musicians and styles coming together and collaborating to make something so unique that as we spoke about earlier, just like reaches inside of us and like makes us stop and businesses the same way. Like you need that level of collaboration at a team to really make something impactful. And you guys work together on this book, we're collaborating. So I'm sure there's a lot of lessons to unpack there as well. How do you approach collaboration apart from just the listening angle?

Speaker 1: I was talking with my twin daughters who are seven and as you know, seven year olds have a habit of asking questions about everything. And sometimes the simplest things you just never stopped to think about, but we were having a discussion and we started talking about the new Pixar movie soul, which is all about jazz. We started talking about Pixar and I used the word, Oh, there, there were a company. And this, uh, what's a company and I have to stop and think about it for a minute. How do you explain it to a seven year old? But then you say, well, a company is a group of people that come together just like we are here around the table to create something. So if me and mom collaborate to create dinner, well, I guess you can call us a company of sorts that produces the dinner.

Speaker 1: But what struck me as we were both writing the book, but also reflecting on the journey that Michael and I have had as collaborators in multiple projects is that we're so conditioned to think of groups in business or companies, and the way that you go about curating, if you will, who you hire based on skills, and you spend a lot of time evaluating people's skills, maybe that a personality, but at the end of the day, the magic sauce of anything is just this intuitive chemistry you have with somebody where actually it's almost as if the skill is less important to that intuitive chemistry. And what we found about the way that most musicians collaborate is that first and foremost, it starts with that instinctive connection that you have with somebody in Michael and I, when we first met, we said, well, we have an intention of writing a book together or designing a class or a major or starting an initiative about identifying rights owners in the music or any of the stuff that we've done together.

Speaker 1: We would have probably been completely turned off from each other and never had anything to do with each other after that initial meeting. But it was this intuitive connection that we have that led us. And neither of us have written a book before. So clearly we did not select each other around our skillset, right. We just had, I mean, Nate trust that the two of us would produce something interesting. We didn't know what it was, but as a musician, I thought I can rip with this guy. I don't know where it's going to take us. I don't know what's going to happen, but we're approaching life and the world and business and everything else, both simultaneously from a very similar point of view, but also from a very different point of view. So that intuitively, I think told us we can create something cool together.

Speaker 1: And there was a quote in the book from T-bone Burnett. Who's a very famous music producer. And is this something along the line? I don't care what you're playing. I care who's playing it. And I love that quote because it's not so much, well, I need a bass player. A guitar is I need a drummer. I need this. I need, that is more, what are you bringing to the scene? That's going to make it interesting. So first and foremost, I care about who you are rather than what you are. I think this is a discussion that we're not having enough in the business world about how you bring teams together. And certainly anybody who started a company knows that your co-founders are usually not people that you sort of consciously select as well. You're this and I'm that. So let's make a company together. It's often just this intuitive connection that you have with somebody who you go about, Hey, maybe we can do something fun together

Speaker 4: When it comes to leading teams for you. Pentose how do you create that intuition in team members who maybe haven't worked together before, or are place they're in a circumstance just based on their skills.

Speaker 1: I ran the company that I founded Sonic bids. We were always, especially in the early days as companies grow, you do lose that. I used to have a mentor who started a company called Ryko disk, who said to me, you know, the company's kind of stopped being fun after we, we could no longer share two pizzas. So I don't know, what's that like, depending on, depending on how much you eat is like eight or 10 people, right? Uh, but those initial teams are so critical to the success of any business. And I think in the, in the history of any company, those early teams tend to be long forgotten. Like most people they'll tell you who the founder is, but they have no idea who the second and third and fifth person actually are. And the second person is often the most critical person in the creation of something.

Speaker 1: But they're there they're often could find to, uh, you know, some asterix somewhere, if, if that, but for us, it was all about this shared interests. And because I guess it was easy to find that because Sonic goods was in the music space. So music acted as this binding agent that no matter what walk of life you were from, no matter what passport you carried, no matter what your skill set quote unquote was, whether you were an engineer or a sales person or whatever. I think that commonality reassured everybody that, you know, we vibe to use a, a music term. And in the early days, that made all the difference that it, because vibe for me is another way of saying, I trust you because there's something that connects us there. That's beyond whatever on a piece of paper or a resume or a LinkedIn profile. It's something that cannot actually be captured in any of these things. It's only something that you feel when you share either a room or maybe I guess, a zoom with somebody nowadays.

Speaker 3: I love it. It's for AIG. And I we've been doing the art of charm for the last 15 years. And though we're quite different in many aspects of our life, we're always able to figure out a way to continue working together. Because the mission that we set out on in the very beginning had never changed. Now, if either of us diverted from what this was about, then we wouldn't be able to work together and much like a lot of musicians, you have an idea of what you want to do and what you want to create together. And everyone starts to go for it. And then if anyone deviates, let's say they choose, I'm going to chase the money. Now, rather than the creative vision that we had for each other, will you have deviated from that path chasing the money comparatively to chasing the innovation or the, the mission that you set out to do are two completely different trajectories that operate completely different.

Speaker 3: And so for CERN to have that vision aligned and agreed upon, and then the steps that we're going to take to get there needs to be set up. So those collaborations can maintain. In fact, they should, those collaborations should feed each other to where, if somebody is not feeling it, the other person is able to carry it and pick it up until the other person finds their way back. And I know for J in our, in our lives and our business with the art of charm, there was certainly, wasn't always days that we could share two pizzas either, but it was the vision that allowed us to continue on and pick each other up when either of us had faltered or felt defeated or, or just a bit burned out. And that that's what made our podcast successful and allowed us within that construct to be able to grow as well.

Speaker 1: Yeah. I think that's such a difficult thing to learn that another person in

Speaker 5: A book is Spencer Tweety. He's, he's the son of Jeff Tweedy, the founder of Wilco. Spencer's a really cool guy have to say. I mean, he, he's, he's a great drummer. He's played with Nora Jones and Mavis staples. You know, he's, he's on all his promote dad's promotions right now. Cause we will cocaine and get together. So he's playing, uh, on his dad's solo album, but he said something to us that, I mean, he's written a book now he's got some records out, he's started a microphone cable business, and we're trying to figure out like, what is the, what is the red thread across all these things? And he said, well, I learned from my dad that the important thing about a songwriting process is literally the process is like, if you're willing to embrace the process, enjoy and enjoy it for what it is, you'll continue to be motivated and won't be distracted by whatever artifact comes from.

Speaker 5: It. It sounds counterintuitive. I think for like, especially for someone who's making a living, making records and making books, but it really is about the idea of, of enjoying what you're learning through your curiosity is, or enjoying the practice of your craft, you know, and then good things come from it. I mean, upon us is right. Like if we'd met and was like, Hey, let's, let's set five goals together for the next five years. I mean, no way, no way would that have ever worked. You know, and I think about that for anyone you've ever fell in love with, I mean that, like the first thing you don't, you like find someone really attractive. You don't start making life plans for your children's college, you know, in your retirement. But I think in, in business we often do get confused by those things, you know, and we, we put our eyes on the wrong prize. In fact, when it really is this idea of shared purpose leads to great things versus trying to focus on the artifact that, um, can be a distraction, actually,

Speaker 2: Johnny and I, and in 50 years of business, we've been on a lot of unsuccessful collaborations. We've had seven business partners over the years and part of their inability to collaborate is why they're no longer here. And I feel that in collaboration, there's always a part of you that gets sacrificed for the collaboration. And Johnny likes to say, you know, don't bring that tired, riff back into the meeting. We've heard it enough, heard it. We said, no, start working rework it. But you know, many of us who are struggling in collaborations, especially in a school setting, as you said, where we don't have that intuition or that shared purpose, yet we get so hung up on us personally, showcasing our talents or getting our ideas to come to fruition or being that leader in the group. And we're unwilling to make that sacrifice for the collaboration. What have you guys learned from musicians and how they approach collaborations when they know that rifts are going to be cut, lyrics are going to not it in there that

Speaker 3: They thought when they were writing or when they were playing, where that thing, where that

Speaker 5: Spark yeah. That ego can get in the way so easily. If you believe enough in the pursuit together, you can actually go overcome these things. Like I had a, I have a friend once he's actually in the book as well. I see a friend once as if he's no longer around, he is around, we still worked together. He was in a different city. Now he said in his collaborations, he never compromised. And I was like, that sounds impossible. Like, what do you mean? And when he unpacked it for me, I thought it was very interesting. He's like, well, it does, in my mind, if either party has to compromise, the neither of you are going to be happy. So if you ever get to a point where either of you are unhappy with what the other one is doing and you feel like you have to give in, the best thing to do is both set your ego aside and try for a new idea, because eventually you both get to an idea that neither of you are compromising about and you both feel great about, I thought that was so genius the way he put that,

Speaker 3: You know, it was one of the discussions that AIJ and I were having before we got on with you guys of what we wanted to discuss and how we wanted to frame everything today. And the way that the section in the book about collaborating, I was wanting to see now I have already known what, what I had felt my musical background has. I have brought into the company with me and I know what those aspects are and that you guys illustrated the collaborative part in a way that I was like, Oh, I never, I never saw that aspect of it for myself in an AGA was hockey about the riff idea. I mean, so many rehearsal rooms where everyone's bringing in these different ideas and what's getting cut and what's getting added for myself. The riff never mattered, or the lyric never mattered if the end result was better.

Speaker 3: And so if everyone's ribs go in everyone's lyrics, go in and we're looking for the best bits I had never gotten. And I think this was just through that process where I had never gotten beat up or never felt I'm so mad at these guys. That was it. I can't believe they didn't. They didn't use this bit because for me, I was always happy that at the end, we've all agreed that the song works. The song is strong and it is strong because of all of our efforts and AGA knows coming into, into meetings. I have viewed meetings in that the same setup for the last 15 years, because that's what I'm so accustomed to and comfortable working in that. And as Aja mentioned it, we certainly have guys who have come through and it's like, well, listen, it's my way or the highway. Well, you see, there's only four of us on this call right now. And this, you know, this

Speaker 1: Concept of trusting that your collaborator is bringing something to the partnership, the collaboration that is additive, not because of what they do necessarily, but because of who they are. And the way that that's expressed is, again, something that we've seen in talking with musicians time. And again, like, you know, one of the examples that we talk about in the book is, is for REL and actually how he's successfully collaborated with so many people, including brands like Adidas. You know, this is a situation where this is accessible partnership there because there's an inherent trust between company and artist that even though the artist is not a classically trained apparel designer, shoe manufacturer, that's not what they bring. He is not a supplier to Adidas, right? That's not what you're that you don't bring Ferrel and for a collaboration because of his amazing ability to manufacture foam soles, right?

Speaker 1: That's not what you're hiring this person. So if all, you see shoe manufacturing as w it's basically a bunch of components that come together to create something, then you're sure missed the whole idea of bringing in a Pharrell. And I think when you hire people in companies, or when companies acquire smaller companies, they often make that mistake. They don't see the people for who they are and what their talents and how they can be additive. They're just trying to fit them within a very particular sort of frame. And it doesn't work. It just doesn't work because you're leaving out the very uniqueness of that person and what they bring to it. And it's something that I think you see throughout the book, this idea that successful creative collaborations are not because of the very specific, very well-defined skill it's about what the other person drinks to the collaboration that as Michael was saying, actually is uncompromising because everybody is individual as an individual. And it's that individuality that they bring that merges and becomes part of a braider hole. That is what makes the whole so cool. That is not a bunch of people who compromise their own individuality. A bunch of people who brought their individuality and one plus one equals 10, precisely because of how they come together and their respect that they have about each other's difference rather than each other's commonality

Speaker 2: In your experience of assembling teams. And then joining teams that you necessarily didn't pick from the start, right? Cause an entrepreneurship, when you're starting your own thing, you're, you're hand picking the team and then you move to a corporate setting. You didn't get to pick the talent, but you're still leading the team. Is there a difference to how you approach collaboration in that, or identify how to bring that individuality out in those team members to get the best out of that collaboration?

Speaker 1: After I sold my company and I went to Berkeley, I went from a company of about a hundred people to an organization of 2000 plus people. And the areas that I lead at Berkeley are actually all over the world, a campus in Abu Dhabi, a campus in Valencia, Spain in New York city. I also inherited a number of people that were kind of cobbled together to create a new area of Berkeley, that we called growth, global strategy and innovation. I have spent in spend still a lot of time trying to understand people's individuality rather than how they fit into my grand plan. So it's almost like you're reversing the process. And my plan is developed out of their individualities rather than me trying to shoehorn them into a grand plan that I prefabbed it brought to the table, because then you're missing the very strength of all the people that you have working with you.

Speaker 1: So honestly, it's been a process and it still is. I, there are people that are just not that easily knowable, or sometimes they don't know their own strengths. And I think your job is to help them figure out where they can be the strongest and how they can express themselves in a different plateau. So, uh, or a different platform I should say. So that's been sort of my approach and it's been an adjustment for me going from a company that I created to an organization that is several times bigger. That's a 75 year old institution. And working with people that didn't know me at all. Uh, but until I became their, their manager,

Speaker 5: A guy in our book named Steve Stell, who he wrote a book called the tanning of America. He he's basically this genius businessmen that connected the hip hop culture with lifestyle culture, and is then one of the major dealmakers for a lot of these artists to get, um, outside of their music and tell other kinds of businesses, you know, but in his consultancy, he talks about this idea of majors and minors. And he's like, your major is your role, like your job title, but your minor is your passion incident in a business. I want to know everybody's major and minor because when we build teams, your role may not matter what could matter would be your passion. So he's primarily a marketing organization. So he's, he's like his businesses like technologists, storytellers, and creatives, but in those three main categories of employees, they can have passion around music.

Speaker 5: They can have passion around sports, they could have passion around food or luxury or whatever it is. And even though they're in the technology team, they might be a software coder. If they had a deep love for luxury brands, I want them on the project. You know, whether it has anything to do with software or not, because they're going to bring that energy, that knowledge to whatever we're doing. And I think it's a lot like what you're talking about upon us. It's like, you, you want to know those individuals in their passions, because at the end of the day, none of us are motivated by our job title and the job titles don't really even mean anything. If you like try to actually deconstruct them, we're motivated by the things that make us enjoy life. Right? And so if you can figure out how to unlock that on teams for your job, I mean, that's great. And that feels great.

Speaker 3: You know, now that we have the, the collaboration we got, we got the pressure cooker of a bunch of guys putting something together. We gotta, we gotta eat something out. And in the book you guys talked about putting your, putting a demo together. And for, I want to make this quick connection because when Facebook came out or Sonic bids or any of the technology that we're using, we got a beta version. We, we saw the first version and we all liked it. And so they decided, Hey, let's develop it. So what could you tell us about that section and what you guys had gotten out of that

Speaker 5: It's the bravery of doing, even when you don't know what you're doing, the truth is you just don't know what you're doing, even when you think you do. And I feel the most brave thing that you can do is just dare to take that first step and almost trusting that number one, it's going to turn out different than you had envisioned it in your head. But that is to Michael's point earlier. It is the most important part of beginning a process that will lead you somewhere. Interesting, but you have no idea. What that interesting is we have another great quote from an interview that we have with Justin Timberlake. And he says, you know, learn how to dare to suck. And it, it, it takes bravery and courage to not be afraid to suck, but it's in that moment, if you will, where the sucking can turn into something truly amazing and different. So for me, that's the whole concept behind demo. If you're so focused on the polished product and you've used so over legislate, and over-designed what

Speaker 1: That polished product ought to be. I think you miss all the opportunity that may exist by coming up with something totally different than you intended to begin with. And maybe a great song and a great product, a great company. Heck a great marriage are often byproducts of being comfortable with the fact that you're going to end up somewhere that you had absolutely no idea you would be when you started out. I think it gives you confidence, actually, that even when you are making what you would think are mistakes, they're just parts of that process. Right. And for anybody who plays an instrument out about UAJ, but Johnny, you do, and Michael, you do. I remember the first time that I picked up the guitar, I went to the store and I bought a, an invitation fender Stratocaster that looked like Clapton's Blackie, you know, and I plugged it in and the agile, so played a similar guitars and I had seen you two love at red rocks.

Speaker 1: And I thought I was going to pick up. Yeah. And I thought I was going to pick up the guitar and sound like the edge or, or, or, or Clapton. I mean, I guess we started with Layla, we're finishing with Layla. Um, and I played that note and it was so different that what was in my spirit, in my heart, in my head. And, and it was both exhilarating and utterly crushing at the same time because it sucked and my finger hurt. And it, it, it didn't, it didn't feel or sound like anything than what I thought the experience would be watching the edge, play Gloria or Clapton play Layla. Uh, Oh, I don't know any other guitar player playing any other song named after a woman. Um, but it was that first note that sucked, that ended up being the first step that I took to the life that I have today. Right. And to me, that's, that's the bravery around demoing. It's just doing and not being afraid to get it wrong.

Speaker 3: One of my favorite stories and examples of that is, is the Ramones. And you have these four guys who really didn't have much of a shot at really doing anything else. And it was the New York in the seventies. Uh, the places just decomposing as they sat there and had this idea that we're going to put a band together and we're going to try to make something happen and you see film of them. It CBGBs, aren't like their third show where they all started the wrong song. And then they get in a fist fight on stage. And, but yet fast forward, uh, we have now have a band who took their limited skills crafted as songs that fit within the skills that they had, and not only made a name for themselves, but have inspired. There's probably not a kid who picks up a guitar who doesn't go through the Ramones path as they start to learn how these things come together and realize that, Oh, the three chords I have learned that hurt my fingers that are, are killing me and are bumming me out. Cause I only know three, well, that's all it takes for me to write an album and, and show three other guys how to play these, these three chords in a rudimentary drum beat. And we're off to the races and then to take what you've put together in that rehearsal room that painstakingly get onstage. And then you're going to go all, start the wrong song and get in a fist fight on stage, knowing we're on a path to success.

Speaker 1: Pretty brave.

Speaker 5: Well, we love asking every one of our guests what their X factor is, and that's either a skillset or a mindset that has allowed you to reach your full potential in life. Michael, anything come to mind for your X factor? You know, one thing I've had mentor taught me in the last, uh, couple of years was this idea of anytime that I feel defensive about something to switch that feeling of defensiveness to curiosity, man, that has been life-changing for me, it's opened me up to so many things that I think normally I would have shied away from or conversations I wouldn't have or even heated moments. So that would be mine.

Speaker 1: You know, I'm going to give an answer that probably would have not given even a year ago, but I would say it's sort of this combination of both confidence and humility confidence, because it's about what we were talking earlier, right? Like the daring to act, even when you just don't know, but then the humility to learn when, what you didn't know ends up being something that maybe, I don't know, you should have known or, or, or, uh, or you're learning from, right? Because if you don't have that humility, you're just not going to learn from the inevitable wrong notes that you're planning. So for me, it's been this, this duality that I'm not afraid to try, which in of itself takes an act of courage, but then if it doesn't, if it's not accompanied by the humility that it takes to learn, then I just don't feel you make forward progress. You remain stagnant either in just playing those records, if you will, and use just writing the same song over and over again, or in playing

Speaker 4: Or learning how to play one chord. And therefore there is no second or third. So there is no song and there is no album, certainly no rockstar. Well, thank you both so much for joining us and writing such an enjoyable and insightful book on innovation and music.

Speaker 6: Go ahead and have a wonderful day. Thanks for

Speaker 4: Having us. Thank you guys.

Speaker 6: Today's question comes to us from our YouTube live. I'm starting to go on more dates and really enjoying it. However, I'm not ready for anything serious. What do I say?

Speaker 3: I think the answer is in the question, I think in order to be able to date around and enjoys swipe life as the kids like to call it, I think first and foremost is about being honest, honest about where you are in life, what you're excited about and what you're going to be doing so that anyone who you bring into your life or attempt to bring into your life, know what they're getting themselves into because not everybody has the same plans as you do

Speaker 6: That said, you'll be surprised by how, when you're honest in those intentions, it can actually change that relationship in a good way. You might hear from the person you're going on a date with a sense of relief that she or he is feeling the same way. Being authentic, being honest, whether it's on the first date, the second date or the 100th date is so important to you, creating relationships in your life that matter. And giving people that full clarity upfront doesn't actually hurt you. It helps you. And we hear this time and time again. Wow. I wish I would have been honest sooner. I wish I would've been more authentic sooner. So many of us are walking around pretending going through the motions, faking that we're interested that we want things to go a certain direction. And then we're wondering why we're surrounded by people who are faking it with us, but when you can be authentic and open and say, you know what, I'm really enjoying dating for the first time in my life. I'm single. And I'm going on a lot of dates. You might be sitting across from someone who says, Oh, finally, someone is being honest. I really like that and appreciate it. And I'm interested in dating around too. But if you sit there and hide those feelings, thoughts and emotions, you present an inauthentic version of yourself, which only attracts in authenticity in return work.

Speaker 4: Yes. Words like this needs to be out on the first date and not on the 10th, because you're not, you might be wasting a lot of time in there and you're wasting the time in authentically and the reaction to, you know what, I'm, I'm dating a bunch of people right now. Did we? Action might very well be which I'm so relieved me too. Right? And this is something that needs to be clarified in the first state. And then both are on the same track.

Speaker 3: I want to rephrase the question to what it really is, which is I'm afraid of. I tell somebody what I want. I'm not going to find any dates. And that's just not the reality of the situation. The reality is the more honest you are, the more people you're going to find that you vibe with and the better all of the relationships that you are in are going to be,

Speaker 6: And let's play devil's advocate. Let's say the person sitting across from you on that date says, Oh, I'm outta here. I can't believe this. I thought this was going to be something serious. You just saved yourself from heartache, frustration, anger, resentment, arguments of someone feeling duped, someone feeling miscommunicated with led on. You want to talk about clingers and dealing with people who can take away from that positive energy in your life. We'll start lying to people on dates. And you're going to find more of that show up authentically. And you're going to start attracting authentic people into your life.

Speaker 3: I want to add to that. And this is one of my, this is probably the one thing that in all my years is a saving grace, which is the honesty aspect. You're going to make a lot of mistakes in relationships with other people. As you grow up, you're learning about yourself. You're learning about what your legs are. You're learning about patients and, and what, what you're into, what you're not into and, and B. So because of that, there's going to be a lot of people in and out of your life. You don't want to get older and think of yourself as a terrible person who hurt a whole lot of people, because the reality is in those relationships that are you trying to find yourself in what you're interested in. There's going to be a lot of people in and out. And if you're not honest with them, then you're going to carry with all of that guilt as you get older and you're, and that guilt has a way of skewing, how you view yourself, and then that skew of how you view yourself. Well, then we'll filter what you think you actually deserve in life. And that is very important because if you don't think you're worthy of true love, if you don't think you're worthy of a great partner who truly understands you, then you're not going to receive it.

Speaker 6: And we want to answer your questions. You can go to the art of, or you could tag us on social media at the art of charm or join Jonny on his YouTube lives, on our YouTube channel, the art of charm and ask your questions. We'll be answering them each and every week in our coaches corner. [inaudible],

Speaker 3: I'm sure you know, how excited I was for that interview. And when I was reading some of the bits for that, they just jumped out at me. And for you working with me, as long as you have, you know, that I see the world through an artist and musician lens. In fact, I use playing in a band as examples and metaphors for a lot that goes on here.

Speaker 2: I know for me, music is not as big a part of my life as it is yours, Johnny, but it was fascinating to learn how musicians push that edge and innovate and everything that we can learn as non-musicians like myself. Now, Johnny, we have an awesome shout out this week. That's right.

Speaker 3: Hey, this week, shout out, goes to GA. Gifford has sent us a nice message this week, about how much she's enjoying the podcast and how the last six months of our podcast has helped her during these trying times. And we love your support and to help spread the word, you can tag us in your social media posts, and we'll be happy to share them and retweet them. Thanks,

Speaker 2: Absolutely take a screenshot of the podcast as you're listening to it. And don't forget to tag us at the art of charm on social media. We love sharing our listeners. Now let us know. We're always excited to hear from you. We have some big changes coming to the podcast. Soon, we're going to be making a big announcement. You can send us your thoughts by going to the art of You can also email [email protected] or find us on your favorite social media platform at the art of charm. What have you,

Speaker 3: He'd captivate and connect with any conversation professional or personal and without changing who you are sound too good to be

Speaker 2: True. Hang tight. We're about to show you how here's the simple truth about communication. When you're able to show up powerfully, communicate exactly what you want. Get others on board. The possibilities for your life are endless. If you're resigned to just blending into the background and accepting mediocre conversations that only scratch the surface well, nothing changes and there's no way around it. Communication is a skill. And when you learn the right framework, well, people will notice

Speaker 3: Is take notice your partner takes, notice your friends take notice. And this is where it gets us.

Speaker 2: You could start showing up more impactfully in all of your conversations quickly. The best part that will become super simple to be the person that everyone gravitates to and wants to talk to. In fact,

Speaker 3: In less than a day, if you're really ambitious,

Speaker 2: If you want to learn exactly how to do it, step-by-step check this out. The art of We break down everything and walk you how we help

Speaker 6: Amazing people do it every single day. Join [email protected] slash captivate. Now, before we go, one last favor, could you head on over to Apple podcasts and rate this show? It would really mean the world to us, and it helps us get amazing guests. Like the two you just heard today, the art of charm podcast is produced by Michael Harold and Eric Montgomery until next week. I'm a J and I'm Johnny have an Epic week.

Speaker 7: [inaudible] [inaudible].

Check in with AJ and Johnny!

AJ Harbinger - author of 1167 posts on The Art of Charm

AJ Harbinger is one of the world’s top relationship development experts. His company, The Art of Charm, is a leading training facility for top performers that want to overcome social anxiety, develop social capital and build relationships of the highest quality. Raised by a single father, AJ felt a strong desire to learn about relationships and the elements that make them successful. However, this interest went largely untapped for many years. Following the path set out for him by his family, AJ studied biology in college and went on to pursue a Ph.D. in Cancer Biology at the University of Michigan. It was at this time that he began to feel immense pressure from the cancer lab he worked in and began to explore other outlets for expression. It was at this point that The Art of Charm Podcast was born.

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