Nov. 8, 2022

4. From the Sidelines to the Game

4. From the Sidelines to the Game

In this episode, I am joined by Marques,  a former NFL offensive tackle and center, and the host of the Get Authentic podcast. He lost everything after becoming addicted to alcohol and gambling. He hit rock bottom when he was fired from two jobs in one week and was working as a custodian. This was his wake-up call to get his life back on track. He started speaking and coaching and was eventually hired by the Buffalo Bills. He now has a successful podcast called Get Authentic where he interviews people with inspiring stories. In this episode, you will learn the following:

  • The importance of taking risks and getting out of your comfort zone in order to achieve greatness
  • The power of stories and how they can help people through difficult times
  • The importance of culture in businesses and how it impacts profitability

"If you want to be great, you have to get out of that comfort zone. You have to step into your greatness. And when you do that there's absolutely no limits that you can't achieve." - Marques

Episode Timestamps:

[00:00:44] - The podcast's sponsor is Gateway Financial Advisors.

[00:01:28] - Introducing today’s guest, Marques.

[00:03:45] - Who is Marques Ogden?

[00:12:09] - Marques’ goals

[00:13:09] - Marques was a guest on Joe's podcast, Get Authentic. The show is about authentic people sharing authentic stories.

[00:18:09] - Learning from others

[00:21:24] - The comfort zone is where dreams go to die.



[00:00:00] Marques: In life, do not sit on the sideline. In order to win the game, you got to be in the game. And a great quote by Jonah Hill, the actor, 'The comfort zone is where dreams go to die. If you want to be great, you have to get out of that comfort zone. You have to step into your greatness. And when you do that, there's absolutely no limits that you can't achieve.'

[00:00:44] Joe: Hi, I'm Joe Templin, author of the Amazon Kindle number one new release, Everyday Excellence and Human Swiss Army Knife. This is the Human Kaizen podcast, conversation with interesting individuals that embody excellence and will help you to get better today. Our sponsor for the Human Kaizen podcast is Gateway Financial Advisors. I've known the leadership of Gateway for I don't even know how many years, and they can help to protect your stuff, your business and your family. They can also help accumulate for education, retirement, and most importantly, make sure that you have a plan in these trying times. Check out Gateway Financial Advisors. My guest today, I'm so excited about this one is a Howard University alumni, former National Football League offensive tackle and center.  Post retirement, though, he's really gone nuts and done some great stuff. He built a successful business which imploded because of his choices and I'll freely admit that. But then, he worked on himself, ladies and gentlemen, and rebuilt his entire world. He is basically a Johnny Cash-esque redemption story. He's the host of the Get Authentic podcast. He's a speaker, coach, consultant, and a hell of a good man. My friend, Marques Ogden. Marques, brother, welcome.

[00:02:11] Marques: Thanks. How are you doing, Joe? And I actually know Shane and Gateway Financial very well. I actually met Shane through my other podcast I had a while back and he's a really good guy and really great branch. That's a really good sponsor you got there. Gateway Financial is a good organization.

[00:02:26 ] Joe: Glad, dear. Shane will be glad to hear that, too. Thank you. So what are you reading or learning right now, man?

[00:02:34] Marques: You know, I'm actually reading a book on marketing. It's called the Marketing Machine and I'm almost finished with it. Talk about how you need to approach the marketing tactics and get in front of people that you want to get in front up of to help your business and help your product have the best chance to actually have a successful into the market entry point.

[00:02:58 ]Joe: Awesome. Do you remember who the author of that is? Because I'll put that in the show notes.

[00:03:02] Marques: No, I don't remember. It's two people, the authors. I'll have to look it up and let you know but it's a co-authored book. They did a really nice job with this and that and different opinions and points of view, so they did a really nice job.

[00:03:015 ]Joe: Oh, so you're actually getting different perspectives on it. So it's like having both eyes so you can get the depth perception and see multiple sides, multiple facets of the problem and the approach. That's really cool. Besides, we can just GTS, ‘Google That Stuff.’

[00:03:35] Marques: Very much so, my friend. So, yeah, absolutely. Anybody wants to talk about marketing strategy approach, they should definitely check that out.

[00:03:43] Joe: We'll do. Sweet man. So bring our listeners up to speed because not everybody is a football fan. Not everybody is aware of your background and your journey. So can you give us a little insight as to who Marques Ogden was and is?

[00:04:03] Marques: Yeah. Marques was a former athlete that played football at Howard University. Then I was drafted in the National Football League by the Jacksonville Jaguars. Played for the Jaguars, Ravens, Bills, Titans. Had a phenomenal career, really enjoyed it, had a lot of great things happened. And then Marques Ogden was also a businessman. After about six months of addiction, alcohol, nightlife, gambling, painkillers, he started Kayden Premiere Enterprises, which became the largest African-American owned subcontracting company in the city of Baltimore in the state of Maryland for two years. And what happened is Marques then became very arrogant, very egotistical, became very tarantical and a dictator, and he lost his company and everything he owned in 2013 and had to move to Raleigh with $400 to his name. And that's what he did. And as a result of that, he ended up having to get himself back into a state of understanding that if you want to be successful, you have to actually get out there and get in the game. And at that time, I was kind of on the sideline. My homes were closed on, both cars repossessing the same day. I was kind of living a life of like, "I want to get into the game again." Was working for Merrill-Lynch, was fired from that job. All my fault. Went to a construction company the next day, fired from that job in five days, sorry, in two days, I was fired basically from two jobs in the same week. I ended up having to get a job at the custodian, working for $8.25 an hour on the graveyard shift from 10:00PM until 05:00AM. And then I had my rock bottom moment of clarity when somebody's rotten meat, nasty, protruding, horrible, stinking garbage got where my body, my skin, and my clothes, Joe. And that was my wakeup call. That's when I realized, if I don't get myself together today, I'm going to be here for the rest of my life. And that's when I say I'm going to get myself together. I'm going to get up off this curb. And I said, "What's lacking in my life is accountability and responsibility." And I finally said, "Poof! Enough, enough." And I got myself back on the track and said, "What can I do to help others and help myself?" I said, "Let's try being a speaker. You're a good communicator. You like to help people. You are a good storyteller." Lost my speaking business, Joe. Two and a half years. Not one paid job, not one got my first page.

[00:06:47 ] Joe: How many gigs did you think you did in that time?

[00:06:50] Marques: Oh, everything. I probably close to about 60 to 70 free jobs. You know, Boys and Girls Clubs, Pop Warner Sports High School, you name it, that's what I did. And I ended up finally getting my first pay job April 2016 with Miller-Motte College. And you know, what's crazy is that I wasn't able to get sustainable jobs going forward. But what happened was, I ended up getting hired by a good friend of mine, Marlon Kerner, with the Buffalo Bills. And Marlon ended up hiring me to come and speak to his rookie class. He was a director of player engagement for the Buffalo Bills. And he brought me in. And what happened is, when he brought me in, it made me realize I can actually do this. He gave me a sense of confidence, a sense of, "I can do this. I can have the right mindset. I can be what I want to be." And I was able to get out and get in the game. And that really and truly helped me to get myself where I'm at today. And now, in the last six years, we've worked for 45 Fortune 500 companies as a speaker. 45. We've worked with people like the Carson Group. You know Jamie Hopkins? We spoke an Excel conference in Vegas this year and we were a breakout speaker. Now, next year, we're going to be going main stage, which we're so excited about. I mean, we're so pumped about it. And we're really excited about going to the new trajectory, what that looks like. And like I tell everybody, though, it didn't just happen overnight. It took a lot of heartache, took a lot of pain, took a lot of long life as well as our first book, Joe, was called Sleepless Nights because I had many sleepless nights going through the process. Many. So, what I'm all about now is good people, good mindset, and we've had a great track record going forward in that regard. But again, like I tell everybody, if you want to achieve success, you have to have a stronger mindset than your desire to execute whatever it is you want in life.

[00:09:04] Joe: Awesome. Can I make an observation, by the way, Marques? You started that story in the third person. You were talking Marques Ogden did this, he did that. And then when you started talking about your almost David Goggins moment, with the garbage all over you. And the change, you moved into first person, you owned it from that moment to this moment.

[00:09:32] Marques: Correct. Because third person, Marques was arrogant. He was egotistical, he was all about himself, he was all about money, external motivating factors. I just had a call with one of my affiliates, one of my people, and this, with... and we're having a little tough situation. Some things happen where financially, we weren't aware of what's going on. Now, we've been brought aware of it and we understand. And I told him, "Look, guys, in order for us to be able to get this done and move forward, I'm going to have to get some things moving and I know exactly how I'm going to move forward. But today, instead of panicking or getting crazy or getting all types of tyrannical stuff like that, I'm able to be more cognitive, more thought process oriented. And as a result of that, I'm able to make moves a lot differently in that regard. So where I'm at today is, is I'm now much more cognizant, I'm much more aware, I'm much more focused on how to actually push the needle forward. And I don't get emotional anymore. I just look at things, I analyze things, I come with solutions. And I tell all the time, if you aren't having cognitive stimulation and I feel you're always going to be waiting for somebody to tell you what to do, which is going to 'cause you what? Problems, heartache and pain.

[00:11:00] Joe: And one of the things that you said there is you don't get emotional, but you still obviously maintain the passion. You are back in the game with that athlete mentality. And so that requires not letting any one particular play affect your play for the rest of the game.

[00:11:23] Marques: Right. Because it's like I tell people, "Focus on the long game, focus on what you want to achieve." Don't focus on the day-to-day grind. Enjoy the grind, enjoy the process, but don't focus on it. Because if you focus on the day-to-day grind and you feel you're not achieving what you want to today or see what you want tomorrow, then what happens is you start to get a little bit unfocused and a little bit just off track with what you want for the end result, for the end game. And I took it all the time. You cannot allow the day to day to take you off track from the overall perspective of what you want for the long game.

[00:12:09] Joe: So talk more about your long game, my friend. Where are you going with this?

[00:12:13] Marques: So my long game right now is to create a brand where we're able to help as many people as possible with our content, with courses, own parts of businesses that make sense. And this way, we're able to really take full advantage of the opportunity. And that's where I felt all the time. You have to look at things from a perspective of how can you add value to people's lives where you're not focused on just what you want, right? It goes back to the Bob Gurb and The Go-Giver. One of the laws Bob says is the law of influence. When you abundantly put other people's needs before your own, you influence them for the better. And that's what I try to do right now with my life. So we're working on our podcast. We're working on trying to do some online courses. We're working on trying to streamline everything to where we're able to get where we want to go for the long haul.

[00:13:09] Joe: So let's talk about your podcast a little bit, because you brought me on as a guest there, and I have to tell you, that was one of the tightest podcasts I've ever been on. You just knew exactly what you're doing, where we were going, what was going on. You respond. It was almost like you were playing in a game, an NFL game because you knew exactly what you had to do. You execute to perfection. And it was obvious, it was not the first or 15th or 50th time that you had gone through this, whether it was actually doing them or pre playing in your head. So talk about your podcast, please.

[00:13:47] Marques: Yeah. Joe the podcast is called Get Authentic and the whole purpose of our podcast is to have authentic people sharing authentic stories. And what we're all about is just the theme of that. It's not just about athletes, it's not just about people like yourself there, mathematicians or experts when it comes to business or executives or corporate leaders. It's not a one type of person podcast. The only theme is we want people that have authentic, inspiring stories where we're able to get that into the grasp of what we're trying to do. Then we're able to what? Reach the masses. So we really care about our guest stories. We care about what they've gone through, their trials, their tribulations, all that kind of stuff. Because in reality, what we're really trying to focus on is the ability to impact our audience through stories, metaphors, trying to help people what? Get through hardships, adversities, hard times in their lives.

[00:14:59] Joe: And from doing podcasts, do you feel a little selfish about it, too? Because we get a chance to talk to all these incredible people and learn things. It's better than Google. It's almost like a Rolodex where we get a chance to talk to people who have done incredible things. They might not be famous. It might be that special needs mom who's had a kid with cancer that has gone through things and developed tremendous resiliency. And we get a chance to listen to them and interact with them and draw from them.

[00:15:37] Marques: And that's exactly what our show is about. You summed it up in a great statement. It's about people who have great stories. That's it. That's what it is. Because I don't care if you're an athlete, if you're a celebrity, if you're famous. That doesn't excite me, right? We interview Michael Strahan, Joe Namath. It's awesome, right? But we also interview Joe Templin. We've also interviewed Tim England. We've also interviewed Misty Buck. Those people excite me the same way because every one of them has a story. And that's what we want. We want the real, authentic, vulnerable stories of our guests because those are the stories that are going to move mountains, right? So again, it's not about being famous or this or that. That doesn't excite me because end of the day, people that are famous have a lot of money, have problems, too. Like I said, "Okay, how can we get this resolved with one of my partners? And I've got ensued so I can put some money up to help out. No problem." Because we didn't know, now here we are. But again, like I tell people, you have to be willing, right, Joe? To share those stories. Like when I go and speak, I share my story. Like my clients, I'm doing a speaking job at Linda Wood University in St. Charles, Missouri, and my clients say, "Hey, Marques, talk about what we're going to talk about." It's going to be a culture, marketing, sales talk. Well, culture is all about the aura that you can't see. It's not going to show up on a profit loss and it's not going to show up on a revenue spreadsheet. But if you don't have a strong culture, all of your numbers will not be good, period. Then bring in that piece about marketing and sales. How can you be able to equivocate, right? And take charge and move down the path that you want by being able to, what? Connect with people. Build trust with people. That's all sales is. It's the ability to create and get people to trust you and want to what? Do business with your product and or your service because they know that you are a person of character. Aristotle said five keys to succeeding at sales, character, emotion, reason, metaphors and be concise.

[00:18:03 ] Joe: And you know what? I knew you were going to bring Aristotle into this. Thank you for doing that, my friend. So one question I have for you, though, is how did Aristotle become your favorite philosopher?

[00:18:08] Marques: He became my favorite philosopher after him, he taught Alexander the Great. But what was really interesting, he was taught by Plato, right? Then he turned around and taught Alexander the Great. See? Taught, taught, right? He didn't just be taught and do what? Keep a thing for himself. He didn't do that. He was taught and taught somebody that became what? The greatest conqueror in ancient history. These are the type of people that what? Respect because when you're trying to train your mindset. First thing I say about training your mindset, key is teach or be teachable. If you're not teachable, if you're not going to actually learn how to what? Take information, take criticism, process things, move forward, you will fail. It's not a question if you will fail. Okay? Huge. So again, that's a really big factor. That's a really big point plan.

[00:19:25] Joe: I’m glad that you emphasize that. Thank you, my friend. Because the entire idea behind the Human Kaizen podcast is that we can always be better. It might be incremental. It might be tiny little bits but we can all be better today than we were yesterday. And the best way to do that is to learn from others because we don't have enough time in the day. We have too many things going on. Better to borrow brains from other individuals as Henry Ford would say. Or the experiences of others as General Mattis would say.

[00:20:00] Marques: I agree. Because here's the thing, people's experiences can do what? Shape your life for the better, for the worst. If you're hanging around the wrong people, it can shape you for the worst. You hang around the right people, learn from the right people, it can shape you for the better. The great thing about life, God gives us this to everyone free will. Make a choice. It's your choice. So don't blame anybody else if things don't go well.

[00:20:30] Joe: And we make on average somewhere around ten to 15,000 choices a day. A lot of them are micro decisions, but what are some things that you have picked up through the various phases of your life that you would tell somebody who's trying to improve themselves to be able to make some of those better, little decisions?

[00:20:52] Marques: Number one thing, throughout my whole life, I have been doing and I realize it, and as I get older, I try to do it more intentionally, be an active listener. Don't talk all the time. When you're talking, you're not learning. Be an active listener. That's why I love being on podcasts, doing podcasts. To do what? Get people's information, get their what? How they do things, get their train of thought, get their perspective.

[00:21:21] Joe: Beautiful. So with where you're going and what you're doing right now, is there anything that you want to share, any calls to action for my listeners and hopefully your listeners. Call to action.

[00:21:40] Marques: In life, do not sit on the sideline. In order to win the game, you've got to be in the game. And a great quote by Jonah Hill, the actor, 'The comfort zone is where dreams go to die. If you want to be great, you have to get out of that comfort zone. You have to step into your greatness. And when you do that, there's absolutely no limits that you can't achieve.' So again, call to action for your listeners, get in the game and don't be afraid of stepping out of your comfort zone, because the comfort zone is where dreams go to die.

[00:22:23] Joe: Love it. Love it, brother. You know what? That's probably a great place to close this off simply because it is so powerful and reflective of who you are as an individual. So once again, the Human Kaizen podcast has been brought to us today by our mutual friend, actually, Shane Westhoelter and the people from Gateway Financial. I want to thank them. I'm Joe Templin. Be excellent and grow today.