I attended Central State University’s homecoming and had the opportunity to interview a man who has contributed to many of our social lives…though you’ve probably never heard of him.
Kedar Massenburg is the former CEO of Motown Records, responsible for introducing the world to Erykah Badu, D’Angelo, and trademarking the term “Neo Soul”.
Kedar dropped some real gems. Check out the full interview here:
“…because I’m a Marketing genius.”
Kedar earned his blessing to lead Berry Gordy’s company NOT because he was bred by the same musical circles, but because he was confident in his knowing of self and his talents.
Good leaders welcome divergent skills into the fold, knowing that diversity— of people and skills — create a competitive advantage.
We have to be confident in announcing and showing who we are.
“If you are convicted in what you know, then you have every right to state that conviction.”
”He mentored me because I could make him a lot of money.”
You may not put millions of dollars in your mentor’s pocket as a result of guiding you, but what will they get out of the deal?
Often times, mentors experience an emotional ROI from sharing knowledge with their mentees.
They’re happy to simply be a part of someone else’s growth.
There’s a pride in nurturing success, and always a gain for whoever’s investing…whether money or time.
“I worked at PepsiCo…and then got tired of that. I worked in pharmaceuticals…and then got tired of that. Then I went to law school. Then I got tired of listening to other people…”
Has your career path not followed the straight and narrow?
The path you’re following is as rare as the skill set you’re developing, and can’t be easily replicated.
Yes, there are industries and roles where divergence is celebrated.
Success isn’t the same thing as successive.
“Be focused and great at one thing at a time. And then everything else will follow.”
We live and work distractedly, with multiple windows and apps open at a time.
We then take this behavior offline, often working one job PLUS a side hustle PLUS a hobby!
Is multi-tasking even real, or just glorified distraction?
Look at the people at the top of their game, and you’ll see that consistency and focus are necessary.
“Introduce me to something that I don’t know.”
Leaders don’t hire just to have someone stroke his/her ego; that’s not how a leader expands!
Good leaders are looking for people who can contribute new insights and ideas, provide a different way of looking at a challenge/opportunity, share new research, etc.
They want to hear your genius.