Business Coach : First Things First
-Let’s talk about family. Tony Dungy, the NFL Super Bowl championship winning coach, says, “But there’s no substitute for a full-time dad. Dads who are fully engaged with their kids overwhelmingly tend to produce children who believe in themselves and live full lives.”
You’re one of the only guys I’ve ever heard of as a pro athlete who would try to bring your kids to things and bring your wife to things when possible. You’re always weaving them in. How have you found time, throughout your career as both a player and a coach, for family? How do you do it?
-You advantage of all the so-called little opportunities or big opportunities. One of the biggest things that probably happened for me as a young player, as a rookie, coming in, I was the only rookie, first of all. And probably 70% of the guys, if not more, were all married when I came in. But a business coach will tell you, it doesn’t matter where you start.
Most of them had kids or were about to have kids. Whatever. So it was a family atmosphere already. So it was easy for me to make that adjustment. So when you had Halloween, you had Christmas, we had family gatherings with all the players and the kids and the wives.
-Now let’s talk about finances– final area. You’ve got the faith, you’ve got the family, you’ve got the finance. Let’s talk about finances– how you fit all in. TD Jakes, the famous charismatic pastor, he says, “If you spend money on what you want, you’re going to beg for what you need.” Although he is not a business coach, this is the type of advice a business coach would give you.
-That’s pretty good.
-I think that’s pretty deed. He always just has a way of saying it where you have to marinate on it afterwards. You’ve got slow roast on the thing.
In your career, at one point, you said, “When I got in the league, I never wanted to live above my means,” or even at your means. Talk to me about finances. You balance the faith, obviously, the family– but how do you balance the finances? How do you make sure you don’t get out of balance there?
-One thing, I don’t deal with the finances.
-Oh, the chief does.
-The course, of course! The wife, she handles the finances, but keeps me abreast. I say– well, what are we paying? What is our monthly bills? I want to know– blah, blah, blah. And that was pretty even-keeled. It’s been that way from day 1. I keep a little boot money in my pocket or my jacket or my closet somewhere, but other than that, she takes care of all the finances.
She’s not a spender. Everything she spends is on the household. I buy her clothes, et cetera, because she won’t buy nothing for herself. And we have been very fortunate and blessed that we’ve had good CPAs and lawyers and investors to keep our monies in order.
We’ve had some ventures in business, a few businesses that we have started and didn’t do so well. We closed them down but made a few dollars off a few of them. We didn’t go way out there. We have made some mistakes in our life about finances, but nothing that tripped us up to where it put us in a bad way. A business coach will tell you that you have to learn from your mistakes and grow from them.
-I think the whole thing is we’re not going to be a perfect person in terms of faith, we’re not going to be perfect with the family, we’re not going to be perfect with the finances, but the idea is to not let them get super out of balance. And you seem to prioritize the faith, the family every day. You do that. And I just want to tell you– you’ve been a huge blessing in my life. Because here you are, coaching at the NBA level– how many games are you playing in a row again? What is it? How many?
-We’ve four games in five nights.
-Four games in five nights in three cities, right? Four games, five nights, three cities. But yet you’ve been able to stay happily married, you’ve raised the four kids, the kids are doing well, and it’s just great to see that. Because very few people do that at all, let alone people with that kind of schedule.
And I think it’s great to see somebody like yourself who’s setting an example for how men and women should be trying to do this thing called life. So I appreciate it.
-It’s hard. It’s a hard thing to do. But, again, my commitment to my faith, one, my commitment to my wife and my commitment to my kids is very important to me.
-I know you can’t see it now, and I know you’re a humble guy, but I want to close by bringing this up here. We’re going to add to the screen right now the current NBA logo– it’s got Jerry West’s silhouette, we think. You can see it. He’s had it for a long time. Here he is. And then we show the logo here of what it could look like with Paul Pressey bringing the rock up the court there. If you’re at all excited about life, just go ahead and email [email protected], and say, Mr Silver, please change that logo. I’m going to see if I can push it through. Just pushing it through.
-I tell you what– you get that done, oh, my goodness.
-I get a lot of a trademarks.
-It ain’t happening. It ain’t happening. Good luck.
-All right. OK. Thank you.
-Clay, thanks for having me.
-I appreciate it.