Career Warrior Podcast #266) Epic Career Pivots: Michael Jordan, Jeff Bezos, Pope Francis￼
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In today’s minisode, you’re going to find out because we’re going to do something a little different. I wanted to highlight some of my favorite career pivots in recent history.
Since I know a lot of our listeners and clients are making a change, I wanted to let you know that you are in good company and to encourage your boldness. Or perhaps you’re not looking to make a great career pivot, but you are looking for something different in your life. A promotion. A different job. A different lifestyle. Rest assured, this is the episode for you.
During this episode, you’ll hear some short bios of these three incredibly notable people with a focus on the career change they made. My hope is that you’ll be left with more hope and confidence as you embark on your own career change.
Chris Villanueva 0:00
Hi. And welcome to the Let’s Eat, Grandma career warrior podcast where our goal is not only to help you land your dream job, but to help you live your best life. What do Michael Jordan, Jeff Bezos and Pope Francis have in common? Well, in today’s minisode, you’re going to find out because we’re going to do something a little bit different. I wanted to highlight some of my favorite career pivots in recent history. Since I know a lot of our listeners and clients are making a change, I wanted to let you know that you were in good company, and to encourage your boldness. Or perhaps you’re not looking to make a great career pivot, so to speak, but you are looking for something different in your life. Maybe it’s a promotion, a different job, a different lifestyle. Rest assured this episode is for you. During this episode, you’ll hear some short bios of three incredibly notable people with a focus on the career change they made. My hope is that you’ll be left with more confidence in hope as you embark on your own career change. Without further ado, this is episode 266 of the career warrior podcast. Alright, before we get started, here is my one, beg and plead that every other podcast post does. leave a review because I love hearing from all of you. And if you’re not going to leave a review, then write to me on LinkedIn. And let me know what you thought about this episode. And what can be done to improve episodes in the future. I love hearing episode ideas and feedback like that. So I know we have 1000s of you listening right now. And so every single review I make an effort to read and to take to heart here. So thank you for that. That’s my plug and my beg and plead. Okay, so let us go through these three epic career pivots.
Epic pivot number one, Michael Jordan. When you hear the name Michael Jordan, most people think of the absolute legend on the basketball courts, some might say the goat Michael Jordan was named the NBA Most Valuable Player five times. He has six championship rings, and has led the NBA in scoring 10 times my gosh. What most people don’t think about are the pivots that Michael Jordan has done throughout his career. In fact, I’ve always wondered what athletes do when they retire considering that the average NBA player really sticks around for roughly 4.5 years. Before we get into the business side of Michael Jordan, we can’t forget that Michaels stint in baseball actually happened. In a shocking move after the 1993 basketball season, Jordan announced his retirement for basketball to pursue baseball. I always thought that to be strange. But for one year, yes, in 1994, Michael Jordan played for a minor league baseball team, the Birmingham barons as an outfielder. And let’s just say that Michael was not the best baseball player. In fact, I think he claimed himself to be the worst on his team. But I always found this to be amazing because Michael took the failure really well and was able to recover from that it wasn’t this crazy embarrassment. But he decided actually to return back to basketball after that. And I know a lot of this was motivated by his dad who I think always wanted him to play baseball. And he, this is shortly after his father passed away. But I just love this because baseball is so different than basketball, it takes so many different, you know, movements, and it’s a completely different skill.
So to see Michael Jordan make the pivot to baseball and back to basketball, I think is incredible. But let’s talk about the reason why Michael Jordan is on this list. Right now. It’s his business side. In 2006, Jordan bought a share of the Charlotte Hornets, formerly known as the bobcats and joined the team’s executive ranks as its managing member of basketball operations. And in 2010, he became the majority owner of the Charlotte Hornets, and currently serves as the team’s chairman. And so I think that this is incredible, a very bold move on Jordan’s behalf here, but improving the Hornets record really seems to be a Jordan’s priority. And while you know the Hornets, they’re not incredibly successful in terms of their wins. This organization has grown from $175 million in valuation, in 2006, when he bought his share all the way up to $1.05 billion in 2018. Let’s also not forget that Nike struck a deal with Jordan so that in 1985, Jordan could receive a generous 25% of royalties. And yes, this was at the same time that he was playing basketball. You can’t call this a hard career pivot. It did set Jordan up for success in the future. The Air Jordan product quickly proved to be very popular and continues to be a best seller for apparel more than 30 years later. Now Jordan sits at the board of directors for Nike reporting nearly $2.9 billion in revenue for the Air Jordan line in 2018 over the year As Jordan, the businessman has signed deals with many other huge brands, including Hanes, Gatorade, Coca Cola, McDonald’s, Chevrolet and wheeze, the key transferable skills. I’m always talking about transferable skills in this podcast. But let’s look at the ones that Michael Jordan had to have in order to make this change. He had to be intensely competitive in nature, his knowledge of basketball surely helped him through all of this. And of course, him being able to learn from mistakes, and have an ownership mentality is what has propelled the success throughout his entire career. A quote from Michael Jordan, I’ll leave you with is, I don’t anticipate getting out of this business. My competitive nature is what I want to succeed. It’s always been said that when I can’t find a way to do something, I will find a way to do it. And that was a quote on him owning the Charlotte Hornets.
Career pivot number two, Jeff Bezos, right here is a crazy one, with a net worth of $188 billion in 2022. Jeff Bezos is one of the richest people in the world, having begun a company with a market cap of $1.2 trillion at the time of this podcast, but the Jeff Bezos always was he always an entrepreneur at heart did he began as an entrepreneur like so many of the other people who were just born with diapers as an entrepreneur, not in this case, after graduating from Princeton basis actually worked in finance land, with gainful employment at several Wall Street firms. In 1990, Bezos became de Shahs youngest vice president, so he was successful in this very lucrative field. Make no mistake, I’m not saying that Bezos was a just messing up in life and all of a sudden had this revelation and was successful with Amazon. But he did have to make a pretty hard pivot from finance on over to the world of starting his own company. So while like I said his career in finance was extremely lucrative. Many people forget that Bezos had to make that risky move on over to ecommerce, which wasn’t as big as it is today. Here’s the pivot. At the age of 30 years old, Bezos decided that he was personally unfulfilled. He soon found that something gave him a sense of urgency, some news that had forecasted the Superfast annual growth of the internet.
Would you believe that quote from Bezos, I came across the fact that web usage was growing at 20 300% per year, I’d never seen or heard of anything that grew that fast. And the idea of building an online bookstore with millions of titles was very exciting for me. Bezos revealed this in a 2010 speech at Princeton, his alma mater. So then Bezos opened amazon.com, named after the South American River. This was in 1995, asking 300 friends to beta test his site. In the months leading up to this launch, a few employees began developing software with Bezos in his garage. And then they expanded their operations into a two bedroom house that was equipped with three son by crustaceans. So humble beginnings still, which is pretty incredible. This initial success of Amazon was incredible. With no press, Amazon sold books across the United States in 45 countries in 30 days. In two months, sales reached 20,000 a week, which, I know doesn’t sound like a lot for Amazon, but this was great at the time.
Personal pivots aside, one element that I wouldn’t even have time to talk about on this podcast is how Amazon itself has evolved over the last few decades, from books to diversify into CDs and videos and 90 navigate all the way to groceries in 2017. Love it or hate it. And I know there is a lot of controversy on Amazon dominating and taking over the world. It’s hard to argue how spectacular they are as a business and as a company. And now Bezos makes another mini career pivot by stepping down as Amazon CEO, this was in 2021, to retain his position on the board to focus on the treatment of employees. This my opinion is Amazon’s biggest problem to date. And so he has made the change in order to even he at this time is making a career pivot. I’ll leave with a final quote of Jeff Bezos. What we need to do is always lean into the future when the world changes around you and what it changes against you. What used to be a tailwind is now a headwind, you have to lean into that and figure out what to do because complaining isn’t a strategy. The key skills I would highlight in Jeff Bezos career pivot are finance, calculated risk taking and competitiveness.
Epic career pivot number three, Pope Francis, this was a very interesting one. Pope Francis, originally born as Jorge Mario Bergoglio, was named the 266, the Pope of the Roman Catholic Church on March 13 2013. He was named by Time as the Person of the Year We’re in 2013. And Pope Francis has really been characterized by incredible humility and outspoken support of the poor and the marginalized of the world. And so this is a very notable person, I think, in our recent in our modern history here. But what most people don’t know is that he graduated from a technical school as a chemical technician.
Before beginning training at the Seminary of the devoto. In 2013. The current pope revealed that he also worked as a bar bouncer in Argentina. Yes, you heard that right, a bouncer at a bar when he was younger. In addition to sweeping floors as a janitor, I did a little bit of digging here. And it turns out that his work as a bouncer was to put himself through school. So you couldn’t really call that a career pivot, so to speak, but I think it does show something great. He also worked the morning shift as a technician in a chemical lab, controlling raw substances. Pope Francis also revealed that it was his work as a psychology and literature teacher that prepared him for his higher calling, quote from Pope Francis is humility saves man, pride makes him lose his way. And I think that’s such a beautiful quote, because he spent time being a scientist and a bar bouncer. And can you imagine the humility that he needed for both of those roles. And science, we’re always forced to admit how much we don’t know things. And I think that’s what makes scientists great. And also with a bar bouncer being having to deal with all of that I can only imagine. And so I think for that reason, humility is one of Pope Francis’s greatest transferable skills throughout all of his career. I don’t know if you can call humility, a skill, per se, but it is an incredible trait that I think all of us should work at on a daily basis.
All right. So I know this episode was a little bit different here. But I wanted to provide some hope and inspiration for those who are making a change right now. And here’s the thing, this list of career changers in history is endless people from Cardi B to Brad Pitt. And these are only the famous people that have made intense career pivots in life. Think about all the other people who are not famous and are making career pivots every single day. So you’re not alone. And give yourself permission to be bold, and to be brave and to move forward and whatever change you want to make in your life. So a key point I want to make to drive this episode home, is get clear and go forth with confidence. You are in good company. And just because you’re making a change right now does not mean something is wrong. In fact, it means something is right. So go forth, be confident, make that change and read some of the bios of these famous people have history that I’ve made a career pivot. And I think you’ll find the same sort of inspiration to help you move forward with whatever change you want to make. If you don’t know what change you want to make. If you’re still getting that clarity. I recommend taking some time for yourself in silence, to decide and even write down what you love doing. Even talk to someone talk to a career coach, a therapist, someone who can help point you in the right direction, and help you realize where you need to be. I’ll leave you with the final ask which is to post this episode and tag me. Where are you pivoting? Next, I’d like to hear a little bit about your career pivot journey, whether that’s a posting a tag or a personal message on LinkedIn. And I’m also going to leave the sources of where I got all this information. If you don’t believe me some of these crazy stats I’ve thrown out. I’ll make sure to include the sources within the description of the podcast, so you can read that on your own time.
Thanks so much for tuning in. This was episode 266 of the career warrior podcast. See you next time that live career warrior podcast and before you go remember, if you’re not seeing the results you want in your job search, our highly trained team of professional resume writers here at Let’s Eat, Grandma can help head on over to letseatgrandma.com/podcast to get a free resume critique and $70 off any one of our resume writing packages. We talk all the time on the show about the importance of being targeted in your job search and with our unique writing process and focus on individual attention. You’ll get a resume cover letter and LinkedIn profile that are highly customized and tailored to your goals to help you get hired faster. Again, head on over to letseatgrandma.com/podcast. Thanks and I’ll see you next time.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai