GCM 78 | Achieving Success

 

Getting back up from a hard fall can naturally be difficult, but with perseverance, it can lead to success. In this episode, Rodney Flowers interviews Marques Ogden who is an international keynote speaker and marketing leader. Marques shares to us his four key pillars to achieving success. He also talks about how he fused the strategies he learned from NFL to business and leadership. Learn more from Marques as he tells his inspiring life story.

Listen to the podcast here:

Key Pillars To Achieving Success With Marques Ogden

I have Marques Ogden with me. Growing up in a single-parent home with a father that inspired perseverance and fairness, Marques learn how to define his values and set goals. Ogden attended Howard University from 1998 to 2002 where he played D1 football. Ogden then followed his dreams and his brother, Jonathan’s, footsteps eventually getting drafted into the NFL in 2003. Overall, he played for five years as an offensive lineman with the Titans, Bills, Ravens and Jaguars. Following his NFL career, Ogden started his Kayden Premier Enterprises. A construction company in 2007 which quickly escalate it to being a multimillion-dollar construction firm. Ogden has become a speaker to help others succeed where he failed. As a keynote speaker, executive coach and corporate trainer, his passion is to create value for every client he serves. Welcome to the show, Mr. Marques Ogden.

How are you doing, Rodney? I appreciate you having me on.

Thanks for taking the time out to be with us. Here you are an amazing guy going to the NFL. You started this amazing multimillion-dollar construction firm and I see you on social media doing your thing and helping people change the game in their life, helping them succeed. I want you to come on and have you on the show to understand what your philosophy for success is, understand what’s working for you. Perhaps there are some keys and some principles that you could share with the audience that will allow them to experience the same success you have in your life.

For me, the biggest key is the four processes our team lives by. Number one is going to be covering move or also known as teamwork. Whatever you’re trying to do, if you have people around you that you all had the team mentality, you could be great. Nobody can build an empire by themselves. I’ve tried it. It doesn’t work. It takes all types of time that I don’t have that you don’t have. You have to build a team and go off the philosophy of cover and move. Number two, you have to keep it simple. Everyone wants to be super smart in our society, which is great but if you’re saying something that people can’t understand, no matter how good a leading think you are, you’re failing.

You have to keep it as simple as possible so everybody that you’re talking to understands what you’re trying to get done. Third, you have to prioritize and execute. Everybody gets busy, you get overwhelmed, but you have to prioritize what’s important then execute it. If life gets overwhelming, relax, look around and then make an informed decision. The last one is decentralized command or also known as leadership can come from anywhere or anyone that has proven they have the credibility to make that call. That’s exactly what our team lives by. I’ve been fortunate to have a great speaker manager, social media strategies, digital marketing strategies, website person. Those four pillars are what we build our brand off of ever since we all got together.

Let’s dive into that. Number one was covering, what do you mean by that?

What I mean by that is everybody has to have a goal. Every company, every person, everybody that has a life living worth accomplishing a goal has to cover and move. Have that mentality where if you’re moving towards capturing that flag or that goal and one of your teammates gets stuck, you need to go back and cover them to help them move along. If they’re moving along smoothly and you get stuck, they should cover you to help you catch up and continue to move. Many people say, “The team’s okay, but I’m doing great.” You’re doing great and the team’s doing okay, you’re not doing great because the team is what has to happen in order to get that point. Nobody can build an empire by themselves. That’s what cover movement is, Rodney. As you all trying to move towards a goal, if you’re progressing and someone’s on your team is struggling, you cover them or help them move forward. If your teammate is doing great and you’re struggling, they should cover you, help you move forward to help you get where you’re trying to go.

What do you find is the biggest struggle when it comes to accomplishing point one in this process? 

Communication is the key. Teamwork is about the foundation of having multiple people teaming together towards a goal. Communication can break down very easily if you’re not putting into practice certain ways to do it consistently. A lot of times I go to a company, I see their lack of communication is what’s hurting them getting from A to Z.

GCM 78 | Achieving Success

Achieving Success: As you work hard and build your marriage, you are building credibility.

 

How do we improve that communication within a team?

It all comes from the leadership role. It all starts from the top down where you have to have a great leader who’s willing to understand what has to be done and communicate that to the team where everybody understands. The team is responsible for getting the leadership should be telling them to do or asking them to do. A leader has to set the tone and makes sure communication is consistent. Otherwise, things can get misconstrued.

We’re living in a time where authenticity is a big buzz word, engagement, and connection. You hear that all the time. A lot of speakers and gurus are touting that. What is your take on that?

It’s fantastic. If you’re not authentic with your audience, they’ll see right through you. I did a speaking job for NABA, the National Association of Black Accountants in Boston. I got rave reviews from the young professionals, the students, and sponsors in the room. There were multiple big sponsors there from all across Boston, all across the New England area and they were all like, “Marques, we’ve had some speakers in the past that didn’t do as well because they only say how great they are, what they’ve accomplished or what they’re doing. They didn’t share any backstory of what’s going on.” That related to the room. I don’t mean sharing backstory about having difficulty, dealing with drugs or growing up. That’s part of your story. That’s great.

You need to try to understand that telling people the story that relates to what they’re trying to do makes the most sense. These are people that have accounting degrees, finance and eComm. I have a degree in Finance, I talked about that. My struggles going through trying to get my degrees. Authenticity is huge. This is why as a speaker you have to learn how to bring back to the room those points that people have hired you for. Number two is this, keep it simple. What I mean by that is don’t try to put something or write something out or talk something that you don’t understand. If you can’t break it down into simplistic language, then you risk the team not understanding what has to be done.

That goes for everything within the team. The projects, execution, processes, strategies, communication and everything.

The more people can understand what you’re saying, the more likely they will execute the task that is required of them.

Did you follow the process of chunking? A lot of people have these great big projects and very complicated and complex. A philosophy that I learned early in personal development is called chunking. It’s a simple technique and it’s predicated on the fact that you can’t eat an elephant at one time. You have to eat them one bite at a time. Is that a process that you use or could you offer up some processes that you use to keep it simple?

That’s a great process. I always tell people all the time, put it in a language that people can understand and follow your system. If you’re in banking, trying to close a big contract and you have to work on numbers presentation to try to sell that client you get with your team, you figure out what their industry problem is, where they’re at, where they’re trying to go. You work on a presentation geared towards the numbers that clients can easily see and understand to help you get that client. Chunking is the same premise as give people things step by step, not too much so they have the best chance of processing and understanding it to make it the most effective and efficient.

Number three is what?

Number three is prioritize and execute.

Talk to us about that.

You have to understand what is required of you. What are the priorities that need to be accomplished to help you get your goal? If you can prioritize that information then you’ve got to say you can stop, look around and make a judgment call. That’s going to give you the best chance to get things executed. The best leaders that are in a situation can stop, process or look around and make a decision. The ones that get overwhelmed and make poor decisions because they took the time to stop and process, those are the ones that end up not accomplishing what they need to accomplish. They don’t do well under pressure.

What’s number four?

Number four is decentralized command or also known as, anyone can lead from anywhere. We’re talking about the ability to have people know that they have the information. They have the knowledge that they can make a call based upon their experience in a situation without having to always go back to your boss or go back to the higher-ups to make a decision. It’s like in football with Tom Brady on the field. He has enough leadership, proven results where if he makes a horrible call, Bill Belichick won’t get mad at him. It’s the same thing in business as you’re working hard and you built your marriage, you build up your credibility. Start sometimes strategically making some calls from a perspective where you’re not always having to ask your boss for everything. Big things you want to go in and get the clarification or clearance on, but sometimes when things need to get done, you don’t have to continue to spend time trying to go back to your boss all the time. Learn to make some sound leadership calls based upon your ability and what you’ve shown that you can do by your leadership track record.

What would you recommend to someone who doesn’t feel they’re empowered on a team? They want to gain that level of trust from their manager, from their leader, from their boss. What would you say to them? What would you recommend they do in order to gain their trust?

Telling a story that relates to what people want to do makes the most sense. Click To Tweet

There are three things they can do. Number one is to be competent in their job. Making sure their boss knows that they are very competent. Number two is to be reliable. If your boss gives you a project that’s due by Friday at noon, don’t have that project in Friday at 12:30 or Friday at 1:00. Have that project in Friday by 11:00, 11:30. The more reliable you become in your boss’ eyes, the more you start to gain his trust or her trust by your actions. The third thing is always have the company’s best interest and make sure that your boss can see that. If people are competent, reliable, and they had the company that they work for or work with best interests, clearly at heart, that will build trust over time.

Are these strategies that you’ve picked up during your five-year career in the NFL?

Yes, without a doubt. From playing for people like Jack Del Rio, to guys like Brian Billick, to playing with guys like Hall of Famer, Ed Reed, Ray Lewis, Kevin Mawae, when he went into with issue with the Titans. Mike Munchak was a Hall of Fame player and coach. He was my line coach in Tennessee. Being around great people, great men, great guys that knew the game but knew how to help teach the game and teach strategies, not only worked on the football field but work in everyday life. That’s part of my story that I pull in to my talks because I live that in the National Football League.

That’s what I said in Boston, “The NFL is Corporate America with pads on.” It’s a business. It’s driven by financial gain. It’s not a game that, when you lose your fancy football. You have fan support. The owners don’t care about that. The more they win, the more TV contracts pay them. The more they win, the more they can upsell their personal seating licenses. The more they win, they can sell more food, the gains at a higher price point. To the owners, winning drives more revenue and more revenue drive more profitable entity.

How has this organization changed your mindset as a player and as one who understands the NFL as a Corporate America with pads on it? What influence has that had on your mindset towards life? 

It makes me realize that everything you do a life should be helping you move towards your final passion and your final career to choose whatever you want to do. Football taught me a lot about perseverance, grit, playing through hard times, playing and very arduous conditions, extreme heat, extreme cold, hurt, injured, great players, not so great players. Everything I learned in football transcends very well into my career as an executive coach, trainer, speaker and author. I’ve learned how to leverage what I have learned throughout my sports career and my business career to bring to my clients’ great keynotes or great coaching or consulting. I’m always learning. I’m always looking for people to tell me things and put into my talks. I’m always looking for more knowledge and I never stopped learning from other people. To me, football taught me a lot about mindset and how you always have that it’s okay if your mindset bends if you’re having a hard time, but it can never break.

You spent some time on a gridiron. You’ve been hit and you have to get back up. You get tired, it’s a gruesome game, which is very symbolic to what life is. There are lots of people that get hit by the challenges in life. The facts of life. As someone who spent time on the gridiron, what do you say? As we dive into this question a little bit deeper, a lot of people have a lot of goals, dreams, and things that they want to accomplish in life and then life happens. They get hit, they fall down, discourages them to a point where they don’t even want to try to go after that goal no more. In football, it’s all about making the goal. It’s going to the next ten yards and then the next ten yards after that. What can you tell us about your experience and how that can relate to life?

GCM 78 | Achieving Success

Achieving Success: These days, some people cannot check their ego at the door.

 

If you’re not willing to get up when life knocks you down, you’ll never achieve ultimate optimal success. Life is going to knock you down whether you want it to or not. A loss of a loved one, loss of the job, loss of finances, loss of a pet, loss of a friend. It doesn’t matter. Anyone’s rock bottom is exactly that. It’s that own person’s rock bottom. Rock bottom, whether you lose $3 million or whether you lose $100,000 or $10,000 or if you lose your mother, father or your wife, it doesn’t matter. Everyone’s rock bottom is endearing and it’s that low point to them. Everybody is going to experience some type of knockdown in life. If you want to have success, if you want to get the most you can out of life, you have to learn to get back up. If I didn’t have any perseverance and grit in April 2013 when I went bankrupt from my business, I would still be doing the same thing that I was doing several years ago, which was working as a hardworking janitor, making $8.25 an hour on the graveyard shift.

That was what I did for about six months because I was not persevering and I didn’t want to get up when my construction business and everything knocked me down. I had my pivotal moment and from there that’s when I said, “If I don’t at least attempt to get up off the canvas, I will always be sitting right here for as long as I live.” That was my wake-up call, Rodney, when said, “No more blaming other people. No more about the developer, the general contractor, my partner. No more, it was my fault.” Once I took that accountability, that’s when life got better.

People may be wondering, we’re talking about bits and pieces of the story. It sounds like it was a downfall and then a pivotal moment where you overcame that. Can you give us what is your story about your downfall in your company and how you got where you are?

After the NFL, I took about six months off. I have trouble with the transition. I ended up getting addicted to alcohol, painkillers, and all this type of stuff you shouldn’t be getting addicted to. I finally found my construction business in the summer of 2008, Kayden Premier Enterprises. I start it from $0 a year, grew into an eight-figure a year business for a few years in his existence. I was the youngest African-American subcontractor in the real estate world into a business owner in Baltimore City and the State of Maryland for two years. We were doing site work contractor, earthwork, grading utilities, concrete demo, erosion control, we did it all.

Unfortunately for me as that company had massive success around 2012, I took on a job for a client that I worked for, that I had trusted. I did the job and the job ended up getting myself very much into a position where I said, “I can trust this person. I can trust this client.” They wanted me to do a change order. I said, “I’ll shake their hand. They’ll take care of me, they’ll pay me my money back. No big deal.” After spending about $2.8 million in about less than 90 days, I did all my work, I went back to the developer and contractor to get paid my money and I ended up getting my change order denied and that sent me into bankruptcy. This is not a Chapter 11, the full gamut, Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, home foreclosed, gone, both cars repossessed.

Everything I have was gone. I moved from Baltimore to North Carolina in April of 2013 and I got down here. We had $300 in the bank. I was one week away from being homeless. In April 2013, the NFL stepped in to help me with the Gene Upshaw Trust Fund. I got that granted to me. It paid four months of my bills. I ended up working at Merrill Lynch, which I thought was doing well. I got fired about three months after being with them. The next day I got a job with a construction company. I was fired from that job five days later. I got fired twice in a week. The only job I could get other than training kids in football was I was a hardworking janitor making $8.25 an hour on the graveyard shift in Downtown Raleigh. I ended up working that job and then I had my pivotal moment where I was taking the trash out around 4:00 AM on my shift. Someone’s trash as I was throwing it into the dump, rip and got all over my bare skin and clothes because I didn’t have my gloves on. When I dump the trash and get back into my little 1995 pickup truck that I bought that is beat up with no car seat, no air and no nothing.

When that trash got on my skin that was my moment when I said, “Being a janitor’s fine, that’s a job. I’m not going to complain. It’s quick money. I have to work hard, but at least I can work about looking at some other things but at least with a job.” My rock bottom was that trash getting on my bare skin. That’s when I said, “If I don’t make a change, the rest of my life I’ll be sitting right here going through the motions of never getting what I want, always blaming somebody else and becoming a former NFL athlete that became a statistic by going bankrupt, but worse yet stayed a statistic because I was too cowardly not to get up and try again.” That’s when I got my life together and become a speaker and for two and a half years, not one pay job. I got my first paid job in April 2016 and I haven’t looked back.

If you're not willing to get up when life knocks you down, you can't achieve ultimate success. Click To Tweet

Not only are you a speaker, but you’re teaching others how to speak as well. 

I work with a lot of clients who want to grow their platform, want to get paid more money, and need to learn how to leverage their story better. They want to market themselves, use social media, and build your power team. I’ll be helping you with those forms of marketing, sales tactics, all that. I spoke in Boston. I had great feedback from the entire audience. I have a meeting with Liberty Mutual about speaking for them because they were in the room. I have a call with the Boston Federal Reserve Bank. They were in the audience and they loved my talk. I’m talking to those individuals. I will be talking to someone from Boston University about doing a keynote for them, potentially one of their School of Business graduation speeches. Another big accounting firm in Boston, their managing partner was there. I’m going to connect with him about sticking for them sometime in 2020 potentially. After one speech, there were 5 to 10 major organizations that had interest in me coming to speak for them. They heard my talk when they were there as a sponsor for that event in Boston.

It solidifies that you are a pretty decent speaker. Congratulations to you on that. I know you’ve turned your life around. It seems like you’re back on your feet and doing well. You’re in a self-development space and you’re speaking to not only help individuals but as well as advanced organizations. What’s the why behind your activity and behavior? 

My ‘why’ when I started was to help former athletes, specifically NFL players, not go bankrupt like I did by overleveraging themselves into a bad deal. As I start to do some speaking and peel the onion back, I saw not only do athletes have problems with things going wrong in business or life, everybody does. I started to expand my why, to help anyone that didn’t want to have the hardships that I did. As I started to speak more and started to perfect my craft more, it starts to develop into other avenues for speaking opportunities. The real big ‘why’ I started this business is to help former NFL athletes not make my same mistakes. As I found out other people make mistakes in business, not only athletes, that’s where my why spread and expanded to not just athletes but people in general.

As you go about on this mission helping people not make these mistakes, what are some of the most common problems you are finding in organizations?

I find that the biggest problem is people can’t check their ego at the door. They think because they’ve had the massive success that they cannot learn. They don’t have to pivot. They always had the right answer or they don’t have to allow inclusion. That’s not true. Just because you pass success, doesn’t mean that you can’t stay humble and learn. That’s the biggest problem I see is people cannot check their ego at the door. If you can’t do that, you’re going to have a hard time in business.

I find it funny because a lot of times, a lot of people don’t get to that point of humility and humbleness until they go through some type of traumatic event or a loss in their life. All of a sudden, they see that they’re not as powerful as they. Their ego can’t help them out of this particular situation. It’s so unfortunate because when you can possess these skills that are good to advance in business, your ego is so big that no one can relate to you. You have to go through some type of traumatic event in order to humble yourself. I find that so unfortunate, but it’s so prevalent in business.

Everywhere you go, you see these people on a high place, high leadership roles. You want to admire them. To an extent they are admirable. When you get to know them, you see the egotistical side of them. It discourages people to want to aspire to be like them. It’s like, “I don’t want to be a leader. If that’s what a leader looks like I don’t want to do that.” We have this personal human being that feels this way because of this experience not pursuing their greatest self, not contributing as much as they can because they’re discouraged by what they’ve experienced.

When you see someone who’s a boss who is egotistical, devious, always out for themselves, doesn’t share the wealth with their team, people will quit eventually working for that boss or those bosses. They’re tired of dealing with all the BS. When you see leaders who are people that are humble, share the wealth, always congratulate their team, always congratulate other individuals that they work with are giving credit to people, not to themselves. People will stay working for you to sustain. What I would tell people is this, I’ve been on both sides of the spectrum.

I have to learn and I tell people all the time, you can pay me to come in and help your organization through my speaking or consulting and success, not make the same mistakes I did or you can gamble, roll the dice and try to do it on your own, which is fine. Some people need to change your mindset for the negative if you let it. That’s why I tell people, you have to understand that if you go that route, that’s fine but understand that success, while it’s so awesome can be negative if you’re not putting yourself in the mindset of, “I need to always stay humble.”

GCM 78 | Achieving Success

Achieving Success: Success, while it’s so awesome, can be negative if you do not stay humble.

 

Some people associate being humble with weakness.

Absolutely not because here’s the thing, when you’re humble, you’re always willing to learn and get better. You have to be confident that you’re good at your job. Confidence and arrogance is a fine line. You have confidence and you have humility in the middle, then you have arrogance. As long as you’re staying on the confidence side with that arrow tip right at the center of humility and confidence where you can be both, you’re great. If that arrow shifts to between humility going towards arrogance, you’re still a little bit humble, but you’re turning into someone that doesn’t listen. You’re turning to someone that knows it all. You’re turning to someone that never asked, “How I can help do things better?” Eventually, if it tips over to the arrogant zone, then you are in a lot of trouble. There are three zones. You have the comfort zone, everything’s nice and cushy. You have the breakthrough zone where the magic happens. You have the arrogance zone, where if you step into that zone it’s the beginning of your end.

Marques, if people wanted to work with you, get to know you a little bit better, how can they find you? 

You can go to my website, www.MarquesOgden.com or you can go to my Instagram, @MarquesOgden or my Twitter, @Marques_Ogden. My Facebook is my name Marques Ogden. My LinkedIn is Marques Ogden.

You’re doing a lot not only one-on-one coaching but online training, you have a master class. You’ve written a book too. Tell us a little bit about what you’re offering in your master class.

In the master class, you have the Ogden Speaking Master Class, which helps you build the foundation of how to strategically start working towards being that speaker that you’re looking to be. The other course we have is our Mental Toughness Over Physical Limitation course is designed to help you push past the negative doubts of thoughts in your mind to help you achieve the goals that you have desired for yourself.

How do you do that, Marques?

We go with things like prioritizing your schedule. How to be a better leader? We go over accountability. We have different modules in that course that are designed to help strengthen the mental foundation of your mindset. We will give you exercises and different strategies around certain topics that will help you push past the negativity that might get into your mind or the impostor theory and helping you push forward to achieve what you want.

Your model is accountability is key. Help us unpack that. What do you mean by accountability is key?

To me, what I mean by this is accountability is the number one thing that people want in other people in life and in business. If you make a mistake, you own it, you fix it, and you move on. Taking full responsibility and ownership of the actions that go on in your life. If you can do this consistently and be accountable to yourself, the team and the organization, you put yourself in the best chance to achieve success.

Why do people find this so difficult?

It’s because it’s to take accountability if something goes wrong, you have to be honest about that. A lot of people are scared of the ramifications like, “I made a mistake on this project.” If I’m accountable and I own up to why I get fired, will I get pay? What will happen? What’s the reprimand? If I don’t do this or I didn’t do something right and I’m not accountable for, why be held liable? That’s part of life. A lot of people are scared of what might happen. When something goes right, everybody wants to take the credit. Everybody’s accountable when something is done correctly. When things go wrong, that’s when people are not being accountable because they’re afraid of the repercussions that might happen as a result of not doing the thing correctly. If you make that mistake, own it, fix it and move on.

I find that even more valuable in situations like this the learning that comes out of it. A lot of times we’re afraid and it’s because we’re not aware by facing this challenge, facing this issue, this mistake, whatever it is. There’s learning to be had. There’s an opportunity here. I find that a lot of people have a hard time seeing the opportunity in those challenges.

I told people, “No is something that you’re going to hear in life and in business, but are you going to shut down because you hear the word no?” Like in life, you’re going to make mistakes. Are you going to be accountable and own up to those mistakes? Are you going to look to pass the buck, blame someone else and everybody is going to continue to shift blame and nothing will get accomplished? If you have the mental mindset to fix a mistake and take accountability, people are going to respect you. If you deny something or don’t take accountability and people find out that it was your fault, most times than not, you’re going to get in trouble then, but it’s going to be worse because you try to not own up to because you didn’t own up to it in the beginning.

Who is your ideal client?

Honestly, my ideal client for speaking is across many spectrums. It could be corporate, it could be retail, could be sports-based. The same thing from our coaching. I have clients that are in real estate. I have clients that are in personal development, I have business owners. I have top-level executives in Fortune 100 companies. Rodney, there’s not anyone I can’t work with. If I can’t work with you, if I have a call with you or a consultation for a speaking job, consulting job, if I’m not the right person to help you, I will tell you that in there. I don’t want to get someone’s money that I can’t help. I’ve been very fortunate and blessed with a lot of different experiences and knowledge to help many different types of people, I don’t have a niche client per se. When I started out, it was I wanted to work with athletes and then as I grew more, became entrepreneurs and then became executives. It became the want to become speakers and coaches themselves. It grew before they could deliver a valuable product.

I’m a speaker as well and what I found is that my skillset that I’ve improved in my speaking businesses helped me, my personal life, my professional life. Do you find that to be true with you as well?

When I work with my clients, some things we talk about as great knowledge from my personal life, people sometimes I do speaking jobs for. I have clients that want me to read something, come up forward to talk to their organization and talk to their specific lingo or language. I got the reading a book for our one client that was specifically given to me by them to talk the language to their staff. I’m using that book and that information to help people with my coaching, which is going phenomenal. Every time I’m working as a speaker, it helps me in my personal and professional life for sure.

The reason why I brought that up is because I feel that as an entrepreneur or professional, one of the most fundamental skills to learn to advance your life in any area, in my opinion, is speaking. Being able to engage with people, connect with people, and be able to tell your story in a way that gets the point across. It gets you your message across the people. I want to encourage people to check Marques out. Check out his speaker services, check out his coaching services. The background and the experience that Marques has could be very helpful to someone.

Accountability is the number one thing people want from other people. Click To Tweet

I believe that whoever you hire as a coach or a mentor to help you, they should have some level of relatability to what it is that you’re going through or overcoming challenges altogether if that’s what you’re trying to do. If you’re trying to reach a big goal, do you need to keep with someone who has experienced with reach and that goes and maybe coming from a low place to reach that goal? Marques is definitely someone that I can vouch forward to say that has done that. You have my endorsement, Marques. I appreciate what you’re doing in the world.

Thanks, Rodney. I appreciate it. It’s always great to connect with fellow speakers that are out there doing it, that know the grind and know-how they have to go out and market and deliver. I was telling my client from NABA in Boston. If I didn’t do a good job speaking then all those companies, they’ll potentially the Boston Federal Reserve Bank, to Liberty Mutual, to Boston University to all at JPMorgan and Chase, all these potential companies I might be working with in 2020 and beyond, if I didn’t deliver, those meetings that I’ll be having would never have been scheduled.

I call that taking advantage of the opportunity. Whenever you have the opportunity to deliver, to perform, take advantage of those. We get those all the time as human beings and it may not come in the form of a speaking engagement. They may come in the form of being a janitor for a while and no disrespect to being a janitor. Whatever it is, whatever you have the opportunity to do, do it with excellence because you never know where the opportunity is going to take you. It could be someone there that’s watching you and impressed with your excellence that can offer you the next opportunity or the next stepping stone.

That’s exactly how I got my first corporate speaking job. One of my clients, I coached both his boys in football, works for a Fortune 500 company based out of San Jose. They’re all across the US. He hired me to do my first corporate Fortune 500 speaking job because I informed him of what I was wanting to do as a career along with coaching football. His boys thrive under my coaching that therefore, he and I have had a great relationship. It gave me my first corporate speaking job in April of 2014. I was not paid, but it still was my first corporate speaking job.

Congratulations to you on that and all the success that you’ve had since that. I wish you nothing but success. If there’s anything that I can do for you here at the Game Changer Mentality camp, please let us know, we’re here to support you and all that you do, Marques.

The same here. I look forward to continuing to network with you, Rodney, and help each other get from where we are to where we want to be.

Thank you for coming on the show. It’s been a wonderful conversation. Thank you for the four pillars that you’ve given us and all the value that you’ve given us, to help us be better, to be stronger and to overcome. To go that extra yard or mile wherever we are in our lives, thank you for giving us that wisdom to go take the next step. I would like for you to give us that Game Changer Mentality message that you would like to leave with us.

No matter what happens to you in life, as long as you have grit to get up off the canvas, dust yourself off and try again. When life knocks you down, you can achieve whatever your heart desires. You must have grit, not perseverance. Perseverance is you’re still standing and you’re fighting. You’re fighting of Ivan Drago, Clubber Lang, Apollo Creed, you Rocky and you’re still standing, you’re fighting and you’re hitting them. They’re hitting you and you’re keep persevering. That to me is persevering, but grit is when you’re knocked down and you’re standing eight counts and you get up and the ref asks you, “Can you continue?” You shake your head, “Yes.” You pick your gloves up, he agrees and you keep going fighting. Perseverance is important, but grit is what you need when life knocks you down because grit is what you’re going to use to get back up.

That is the Game Changer Mentality message. You’ve got to have the grit to keep going, to get up, to keep moving. Another successful episode of the Game Changer Mentality podcast, whatever you’re doing, whatever you’re going through, look yourself in the mirror and find that grit to keep going. Thank you, Marques, for dropping by to be with us and thank you guys for reading.

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About Marques Ogden

GCM 78 | Achieving SuccessGrowing up in a single-parent home with a father that inspired perseverance and fairness, Marques Ogden learned how to define his values and set goals. Ogden attended Howard University from 1998-2002 where he played Division I football. He then followed his dream and his brother Jonathan’s footsteps, eventually getting drafted into the NFL in 2003. Overall, he played for 5 years as an offensive lineman with the Titans, Bills, Ravens and Jaguars. Even during the offseason, Ogden helped train football players in Europe, both physically and mentally.

After 5 years of playing in league, he decided to retire and pursue a career in construction and contracting. At the age of 27, Marques founded a construction company called Kayden Premier Enterprises. The company had fast growth and in 2010, Marques won The African American Subcontractor of the Year Award in the state of Maryland. Eventually, his business went bankrupt, losing almost 2 million dollars on one project in a matter of 90 days. During his darkest hours, he pulled himself together, got a part-time job as a custodian and with hard work and determination became an inspirational speaker, best-selling author, and marketing leader, helping to build the success of others.

Are you ready to shed your past, rise above your present, and go confidently in the direction of your dreams? The first step? Decide. Choose right here and now to make a move. Set your intention. Then simply ask Rodney for help. https://rodneyflowers.com/mentoring/ 

Want an inspirational story and a magnetic personality plus interactive actionable strategies to transform your audience? Book Rodney for your next event. https://rodneyflowers.com/speaking/

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