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Trial Lawyer Brian Beckcom on Compassionate Engagement
Episode 1822nd March 2022 • The Leadership Tales Podcast with Colin Hunter • Colin Hunter
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Brian Beckcom is one of the United States’ leading trial lawyers. For over 20 years Brian has taken pride in helping victims of injustice and unfortunate circumstances to live the life they deserve to live. He is also a philosopher, computer scientist, philanthropist, and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu practitioner.

Listen to today’s conversation to gain insight into how working and leading from a place of compassion can positively affect your people and your bottom line. 

Links mentioned:

Lessons From Leaders YouTube

BrianBeckcom.org

VBAttorneys.com

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Twitter

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LinkedIn

Transcripts

Colin Hunter 0:08

Hi, folks, and welcome to another episode of the leadership tales Podcast. I'm delighted today to be joined by the amazing Brian Beckcom. I can only describe him as amazing. I love my conversations with him. I met him on his podcast lessons from leaders when I launched my book, and we hit it off straight away; you'll get a sense of why when you listen to this recording today with Brian, he's one of the US leading trial lawyers. He's a philosopher. He's a computer scientist; he's a philanthropist. And therefore, you get a sense that he's got multiple different disciplines, backgrounds, and experiences, which he brings to his work. And you're here today, stories of how his father influenced him how his work influenced him. And for me, the fascinating piece is how you can do good through technical expertise, like being a lawyer, and start to shift and shape some of the key things that are happening in our society today. So delighted you get a chance to listen to Brian; you will love him. He's warm; he's friendly. And I look forward to hearing what you think about our conversation.

Colin Hunter:

Delighted to be joined by somebody who I've only met once. And it was a great conversation on his podcast. And I asked him to come on, firstly, because he's got an amazing background. But secondly, because of all the lessons that he's heard from people talking on his podcast, Brian Beckcom, welcome to the podcast.

Brian Beckcom 1:38

Colin, I can't tell you how much I appreciate being on the show. I've been looking forward to this for weeks now. I mean, you and I shot our show, which hasn't been released yet, I thought, a couple of months ago, and it's one of my favorite episodes I've shot. You know, when I record the podcast, I go back and listen to the shows three or four times. I've listened to yours. It's incredible. People are going to love it. And as a bonus, I think it's going to be scheduled to be released right about the time that book that I've been really looking forward to is going to be released, a book called be more wrong by none other than yours, truly.

Colin Hunter 2:15

Yeah

Brian Beckcom 2:16

So anyway, yeah, but anyway, seriously, I really am excited about this. And I appreciate the opportunity to be on your podcast. I know you. You've had some great guests. You're doing great things. And so thank you.

Colin Hunter 2:31

Well Pleasure. So I'd love just for those who don't know you. I mean, you know what part of the world? The great thing about doing this podcast is we're talking to people from all over the world. And it'd be great. I can detect the accent will give people a sense of where you are from, maybe just give you a bit of your background, your history and what, why I'd want you on because I mean looking at your CV, it's amazing. Yeah. So

Brian Beckcom 2:51

Well, I appreciate that. So I'm from Houston, Texas. I'm actually a seventh-generation Texan, although my dad was an Air Force officer. And so, I moved around all over the place when I was growing up. And you know, but I've been in Houston, Texas, for 20 years. And it's funny because there are a lot of Brits and Scottish people and Irish people and people from Great Britain and Houston. And I always say, man, what kind of accent and said, they say, What do you mean, what kind of accent you know, you're the one with the accent. So,

Colin Hunter:

Yeah

Brian Beckcom:

But in any way, I'm a Texan. And like I said, I'm a military brat. I grew up basically all over the United States. I was kind of raised in kind of the military lifestyle where you got to be prepared to move a lot. And you know, my dad was, is still alive. He's one of my heroes. And, you know, when I was growing up, one of the things that right now my primary job is a lawyer representing people who've been injured or killed. But I also run a leadership podcast, like you mentioned, but probably the defining moment in my life where the defining event in my life was losing my mother when I was ten years old. And so when I was 10, and my brother was a, my dad was a major in the Air Force. My mom died after a five-year battle with breast cancer. And my dad has become one of my heroes as a result of that because of the way he handled that. I mean, I can tell story after story after story, but I'll just tell you one real quick. My dad put a big three, like a magnetic three, on our refrigerator door after my mother died, and he told my brother and me, he goes no matter what happens, guys, whether I get remarried or anything else happens, that the three of us will always come first and you know, I'm 48ónow looking back on that. That's the kind of reassurance that is super important for kids when they're that age. And, you know, my dad raised my brother and I's Air Force; a very distinguished Air Force officer who flew 200 combat missions in Vietnam won the Distinguished Flying Cross. I mean, if there's an honor to be one, he wanted. And at the same time, he's raising two young rambunctious, cool boys, both of whom played sports; I think he missed one of my games in high school and just really, really is a role model for me. And a lot of other people, but that event, my mother passing away, and the older I get, the more I realized how that affects people subconsciously. And so I don't think it's a mistake. Because when my mother died as a result of some very serious negligence on me on, on the part of some Air Force doctors and my dad actually had a legal case and proved it in one. And I didn't know it at the time because I was too young. And my dad kept all that stuff kind of away from us. So we didn't have to think about it as little kids. But now, I basically do what the lawyer for my mother did for our family. And so, I don't think it's a coincidence that I do what I do. And I also don't think that it's a coincidence that I've, in addition to being a lawyer and a podcast, I'm very, very interested in the way the mind works, consciousness and meditation, and things of that nature. And I think that is in large part because as I've grown older, it's been a good way for me to explore some of the impacts of some childhood trauma that I've had, you know, I think the science is pretty clear on the fact that childhood trauma, losing a parent or being the victim of abuse really affects you throughout your entire life, and you can ignore it and shove it into your subconscious. And then it manifests itself in things like addictive behavior and stuff like that, or you can confront it head-on. And as I've grown older, that's kind of what I've tried to do so. But anyway, I'm in Houston, Texas; I've run my own law firm for 20 years. I also read, like you said, a leadership podcast lesson for leaders that I started during quarantine. I'm a dad to three teenagers, two boys and a girl been married for 20 years. And I'm also a practitioner of two years ago, Brazilian Jiu-jitsu, which is one of the best things I've done in last.

Colin Hunter 7:10

Tell me also about that. I want to know what it is?

Brian Beckcom 7:14

Okay, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. It's a fight. It's a form of martial art to fighting style. It's similar to wrestling. There's no striking involved, so you're not punching people or kicking people. But it was actually originally jiu-Jitsu was originally developed in Japan and then brought to Brazil taught to a man by the name of Helio Gracie. And then, the Gracie family in Brazil has made jiu-jitsu world famous. And it basically it's a martial artist, what it involves grappling, it's kind of like wrestling except I can choke you. I can break your elbow; I can break your ankle; I can do what they call submission holds. And that started about two years ago, at age 47. People were telling me I was crazy. And it's been the best thing I've done in the last ten years, for a host of reasons that we can discuss. But anyway, it's my passion now. And, you know, among other things, So that's basically Brian Beckcom in a nutshell.

Colin Hunter 8:16

Nice, Thatís quite a story. I'm so sorry to hear about your mother. But there's something here about this parallels for me about my childhoods in here, our relationship with our father, and then about the spirits of the family and other pieces coming in. So I'd love to explore a bit of that. I'm a big passionate believer in meditation; as we talked about headspace,

Brian Beckcom:

Yup

Colin Hunter:

you know, and that's my practice, but I'm also getting into breathing and other areas, which is

Brian Beckcom 8:43

Amazing. You'd say that about breathing. By the way,

Colin Hunter:

Yeah

Brian Beckcom:

I've just started really focusing on some breath work, too, if you want to talk about that. I'm really, really interested in that right now too.

Colin Hunter 8:53

Love that. I mean, it's interesting, the more you do your own work, and you know, you eat your own dog food, as we say over here. The more you explore these areas, you suddenly come up with a bit, and I'm passionate about understanding the jiu-Jitsu as well, because I think there's something here that the one bit the one regret, and I've got my life and I don't have many is really about not doing some sort of martial art because everybody I know who did it, there was a discipline and there was something else that they got from it. So I'd love to explore

Brian Beckcom 9:23

Yeah

Colin Hunter:

that. But

Brian Beckcom:

Sure

Colin Hunter:

Let me talk about the purpose there because that's fueling you in terms of your lawyer work. It's fueling you in terms of this, you know, winning lawsuits for others.

Brian Beckcom:

Yeah,

Colin Hunter:

But for some people who might be listeners to say well okay, this is about money, but it that my sense of knowing you there's something deeper than this, underneath that, you know,

Brian Beckcom:

Yeah

Colin Hunter:

From winning large amounts of money for people. Yeah, great. But there's something about righting wrongs or fighting for others that there isn't there. Yeah,

Brian Beckcom 9:53

There's no doubt about that. I've always been one of those people that root for the underdog, so I don't root for the New York Yankees. I don't. I wouldn't root for Manchester United, you know; I'm not that guy.

Colin Hunter:

I don't either

Brian Beckcom:

I root for the underdog. And I've always been that way. And you know, I'm not ashamed to tell people that I make good money doing what I do; I make really good money doing what I do. And I'm not ashamed to admit that. But the nice thing about what I do is I get to make good money, and I get to help real people. On a daily basis, I'll tell you a quick story; I represented a 13-year-old girl about feeling cautious must have been 15 years ago; she lost three fingers on her left hand, including her wedding ring finger.

Colin Hunter:

Wow

Brian Beckcom:

And a case it was going to be really hard to win, I ended up when winning the case getting a big settlement. And she has sent graduated from high school; I've got a picture frame hanging in my office that she sent me with her high school graduation picture and a note that said how much she appreciated it. Then she went to the University of Texas, which is a college in Texas, one of the biggest colleges in Texas, really prestigious. And too, after she graduated from there, I got a note with a graduation picture that said I use the settlement money. And I would not have been able to afford to go to college without the settlement money, and settlement money enabled me to do that. And I actually ran into her about; she came up to the office to see me about five years ago. But the point of that story is, and that's not the only time that's happened; the point of the story is one of the wonderful things about my job is that I really get to change people's lives. And it's real people that I get to see face to face. It's not some big corporate entity, which is fine. But it's I'm closer to the action. And the other thing I'll say is, at least in America, really the last line of defense against making sure corporations make smart decisions and do say things and don't cut corners on safety is the trial or is that people to do what I do. And so I do feel a sense; I love the fact that I make good money because it enables me to give that money back to other people and to do things to support people that need it. So but you're right, there is a higher purpose there. And it will be difficult for me to understand how somebody can get up and go to a job on a day-to-day basis, that they don't really have some sort of passion or purpose where I feel for people that are in that situation.

Colin Hunter:

I'm with you. And you know, there's a common theme for me around unlikely leaders. All these people have doubts about their capability to lead. And also, one of my biggest passions is introverts, they have made the strongest leaders, but we have this view about, you know, charismatic people being the best leaders. But so fighting for the underdog. And something I'm doing next year, Brian, we weren't talking about this when we last met, is we're doing kicking off something called the 500, which is looking at disadvantage opportunities for 18 to 30-year-olds and getting mentorship schemes up for that. And it's people like that lady who went to, to college after youíve helped and supported her, you know,

Brian Beckcom:

Yup

Colin Hunter:

To give people the opportunity to grow. So coming back out of that, you've got some kids, and there's a piece in there about, you know, I'm a father, and I look at the learnings, and I look at what your dad taught you. So I want to just go back to your dad for a second. What are the lessons that you pick up from that maybe resonate with some of the work that you've done on the podcasts where you've gone? Yep, that's exactly. How was that aligned? Yeah

Brian Beckcom:

So I would, you know, I would say when I think of the lessons my dad has taught that my dad taught me, if it's not the main lesson, it's one of the top two or three is he taught me never to quit. And so it was a huge deal to him. As a matter of fact, the day I left for college, he bought me a book of pictures. It was basically a book of sporting accomplishments in all different kinds of sports, where it would have like a picture of somebody basically crawling across the finish and a marathon or somebody covered in mud and a football game. And they're just getting down. The title of the book was don't quit, and he inscribed it in the insight to me. He said, you know, Brian basically said, persistence wins. And don't ever forget that I still have that bucket manufactured about 10 feet away from me; I'm in my study right now. And so my dad gave me this discipline, I guess you can call it that, in order to beat me, you're going to have to kill me because I'm never ever going to quit. And that's really been an amazing tool to have in my profession, and I'm sure in any other profession. And then the other thing my dad taught me. Frankly, Colin and one of the reasons that I started my podcast is he's just a decent human being. His values are he treats everybody equally. He cares about people. He's probably been single-handedly responsible for at least 500 people going to college because after he was an Air Force, he was a high school teacher for 20 years.

Colin Hunter:

Amazing

Brian Beckcom:

And I think what he taught me is, and I didn't always realize it's not about me, it's not about what I can do for me, it's about what I can do for other people. That is really; I probably didn't realize that until I was in my 40s. Because, you know, when I was in my 20s and 30s was all about me, me, me, what can I do for me? What can I do for myself?

Colin Hunter:

Yeah

Brian Beckcom:

Yeah, And I finally realized that not only is that a recipe for being unhappy, if you're only focused on what you can do for yourself, but if you want to be joyful, like really, truly happy, the best way to do that is to do things for other people. So even if you want to be a little selfish about it, doing things for other people,

Colin Hunter:

Yup

Brian Beckcom:

It will make you feel so, so much better. So doing things for other people and never quitting are probably the two biggest lessons that I got from my father.

Colin Hunter:

I love that. I want to go off one of those because I never give up; never quit is something in there, and we're talking a lot about resilience now. And then we're talking about a lot about mindfulness, the breath classes, everything else in there. And to be able to do that and stick in there and have a purpose of fighting do the probably hours that you do, there's something about keeping yourself as an individual for unhealthy. So talk to me about that. And maybe some of the things you've tried, and they just haven't worked up because, you know, the be more wrong principle. And I've screwed up so many times in terms of my personal health, with a knee or my knee,

Brian Beckcom:

Yeah

Colin Hunter:

Current left knee as one, you know, a symbol of that. So tell me a bit about what you tried. And what's worked for you? Well, maybe not was work as well.

Brian Beckcom:

Yeah, sure. So I would say like you were talking about earlier, we were both big fans of meditation. And I've been a regular meditator for about 15 years. And I think in terms of something that's very healthy, not only for your mind but also for your body, that's probably been the biggest game-changer for me. And, you know, a lot of people, I think, before they get into meditation, think that it's about stopping your thoughts, or it's about some woo woo kind of spirituality sort of thing. And it really is none of that. And by the way, what she realized real quickly, and meditation is you can't stop your thoughts. It's impossible.

Colin Hunter:

Exactly.

Brian Beckcom:

That's like one of the first things you realize is how your mind just generates these thoughts, subconsciously, without you really doing anything about it. But meditation is really just about learning more about yourself and how your own mind works. And when you understand how your own mind works, it really gives you a lot of gives you a sense of serenity, a sense of calmness, things like that. Martial arts, in terms of physical training, has been absolutely incredible for me; you know, I've been practicing yoga for over ten years. And it's just happened to be Colin that yoga is really good for the martial art that I've been doing because flexibility helps a lot. And so the martial arts has been just, I could talk forever about this, one of the best things I've ever done, I will tell you, in terms of things that didn't work. During quarantine, like a lot of people, my consumption of wine probably doubled by staying up late. It was like 2 a.m; you know, my wife and I watch streaming shows every night; we didn't have anything else to do. So I put on about guys, I probably put 10 pounds, and I kept a chart every day in a journal and what my weight was, what time I went to sleep, how much I drank, what I did for exercise, all that sort of thing. So I can track this whole thing with pretty good detail. And I gained about 20 pounds during quarantine. Even though I was exercising every day, my dietary diet habits, particularly my wine drinking habits, got a little out of control. And so what I found Colin about to be 49 in November is all the usual tricks that I've been using my whole life to lose those 10 pounds. They're not working quite as fast, right. Yeah, So I've got about five more to go, but I am working on it. And so, I try not to be too critical of myself. One of the things that meditation has taught me is there are times, and I know a lot of people listening will relate to this. That voice in your head that's criticizing you if somebody some other person talks to you the way you talk to yourself, they'd be your worst enemy. And so

Colin Hunter:

Yeah

Brian Beckcom:

I try not to be too hard on myself. I mean, I'm a type-A personality and a pretty driven person. So I'm pretty self-critical at times, but I'm trying to lose five pounds, so if you got any secrets, please let me know.

Colin Hunter:

This will be like a mutual self-help piece. What I found is I did a couple of things recently, and I'm with you because I was coached by a guy called Jamie clear at Jamie smart with a book called Clarity a long while ago, and he talked about falling out of your thinking, and he talked about this need for, you know, to clear your mind on a regular basis of work. But he said, Don't as you said, don't forget the thoughts. Don't try to push them away; just let them flow and work. And he uses a wonderful analogy, which I still hold to this day is as we grow older, our river gets frozen. So if you think about the Colorado River churning through the rock, and suddenly as we get older, we get all these things that add to it and freeze it. So, in the end, we want to get a small amount of a trickle flowing through underneath all his eyes. So we've got to unfreeze, I think, and so what I love about what you said is the tracking firstly, of what you've done is interesting, but the second thing is the meditation and the Jitsu and jiu-Jitsu and the other pieces in here. But what I wanted to link in was I've been reading this book, why we sleep, which is fascinating. I don't know if you've read it.

Brian Beckcom:

I love that

Colin Hunter:

Why we slept. Yeah

Brian Beckcom:

Yeah.

Colin Hunter:

And it's the punishment the brain takes through a lack of sleep. And wine is one of them is scaring the hell out of me on Monday night, you know, because I'm with you. I love wine. And I'm actually using one of the there's whoop that I'm testing out at the moment to measure my there you go, Yeah,

Brian Beckcom:

I am going one o one with my man.

Colin Hunter:

I'm looking after if Iíve alcoholic night, and I look back at my sleep and go, Wow,

Brian Beckcom:

Boy, It's terrible. Yeah

Colin Hunter:

So for those who are looking at us and going so, where's all the fun in your lives? It sounds like you're trying to cut out everything that's good provides joy in our lives. How did you balance all of that in your life?

Brian Beckcom:

Yeah.

Colin Hunter:

Whatíd you do

Brian Beckcom:

That's a great question, Colin. And one of the things that I do occasionally is not surprising is that I've been a journal journaler. For 20 years, I've been writing in a journal almost on a daily basis. But one thing I'll do it once a month or so I'll write down what are the things that really truly made me happy. Like, what is the things that really give me a deep sense of happiness, not like a temporary sense of happiness. And I can tell you one thing; I figured a quick story for you. So a year ago, I was at my jiu-Jitsu studio, and there were different belt rankings, and a beginner is a white belt. In Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, you get little stripes on your white belt as you advance until you get a different color belt, and I got my first stripe on my white belt. About a year ago, I was driving home in my car, and I started breaking; I broke down, I could not stop crying. And it was the first time I remember in probably 15 years. Well, actually, the last time I remember this happening was when my daughter was born. She's 13. That was about 13 years ago, but I was crying tears of joy. And I could not stop. And I actually called my dad on the way home. And I said, Dad, I got to talk to somebody about this because I feel I can't believe how good I feel. And it was like, Colin, I couldn't stop crying. And I'm not a crier. Like,

Colin Hunter:

Yeah

Brian Beckcom:

I don't remember the last time tears came out of my eye. Maybe when my daughter was born. Like I said, when I walked in the door, and I've got tears in my eyes and my wife's like, what's wrong? I said, I just got my first stripe on my white belt, which is just a Pete literally a piece of tape, they stick on your white belt. And so I started thinking about it. And I was like, over the next few weeks, I was like, gosh, dang, why was I so happy about that? And the answer for me was because Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is hard. There are no shortcuts, especially when you're older. You got to show up; you got to face your fear every single time you go. I mean, last night, I was training with a guy that weighs 50 pounds more than me and is 20 years younger. And what I think I figured out, Colin is the things that truly give me joy didn't give me a deep sense of happiness or overcoming challenges and overcoming. I still drink wine, and I still love drinking wine, things like that. But there's a lot of things that I'm sure a lot of your listeners do that give us kind of a temporary sense of happiness or, you know, a quick sense of happiness. The deep, deep, joyful sense of happiness, at least for me, is things like doing things that are consistent with, first of all, having a purpose in life, overcoming obstacles, overcoming challenges, those are the things, and it was a real eye-opener for me because for good or for bad. I'm in a situation where I could live a pretty comfortable life. I don't have to exercise. I don't have to challenge myself that much. I could literally sit there and watch TV most of the time and do nothing. And what I realized is maybe the ironic thing about that is a success can be really dangerous,

Colin Hunter:

Yeah

Brain Beckcom:

Right?

Colin Hunter:

Yeah

Brian Beckcom:

I mean, it can be really dangerous, and I found myself before I started jiu-Jitsu. I've had tonnes of success. I've been really lucky, getting lazy and getting soft. And I was like, Man, this is dangerous. I need to figure out something to push myself. And so, for me, that's a long way to answer your question. But for me, the things that really made me happy, that really gives me a deep sense of happiness, are doing things consistent with my purpose, overcoming challenges, solving problems, helping other people; it's not those little quick, quick hitters that you can do for yourself to make yourself happy. So

Colin Hunter:

Yeah,

Brian Beckcom:

That's my answer to that question. Yeah

Colin Hunter:

I think it's a great answer because I want to tie it back to what you said earlier on about doing it for other people; all the science now about habits and taking things on, and even when you're doing your meditation when you're doing instructor meditation, it's always about, think about who you're doing this for. And the habit says the same thing, who you're doing this for. And that's what keeps me going, you know, the latest challenges is always so who can I do this for, and the moments of the greatest joy in my life, or when my daughters are successful with their exams, or when the time that I will ask, cried in a good way was when actually in a bizarre way, my daughter was sitting in the office underneath my desk when I was doing something and she just she was doing her homework. And this was a few years ago. And she kicked me in the leg. And I looked down, and she just looked up to me, and she said, bully. And she'd spotted me doing something in the office, which she had been taught was bullying. And she was right. And it was that moment when suddenly my daughter was teaching me about life. And that, for me, that got me to tears because I thought,

Brian Beckcom:

Oh, yeah,

Colin Hunter:

Great. Firstly, I'm bringing somebody into the world who's willing to speak up. But secondly, she's willing to take that risk because it was she was shaken when she talked about it later on. But she wanted me to live the best life, and therefore doing it for others is one of the best things you can do. It's great. So, yeah

Brian Beckcom:

For sure, for sure.

Colin Hunter:

I love that. I want to come back to your lessons from the podcast because as a podcast, I mean, for those who want to do their own podcasts, maybe just some of your lessons about running because it's not easy. You know, it's not everything. You just do a podcast; you rack up.

Brian Beckcom:

Yup

Colin Hunter:

You do them. But what have you learned? What has it given you? And what have you learned from it? Yeah,

Brian Beckcom:

Yeah. So I started the podcast during quarantine, primarily because I had been thinking about it for two or three years. But the thing that held me back, to be totally frank with you, is I was like, why would anybody want to listen to a lawyer talk about anything? What would be the point of it? Like, what would be the what's the consider? Or what's the purpose of the podcast? So and I hadn't been able to answer that question, and then quarantine hit. We were locked down in Texas. And I don't think my family left the house more than once a day for like three or four months. And so it's pretty strict. And you know, of course, what do people do? They get on the internet, get on social media, and I'm on social media, and everybody's just fussing and fighting. It's so negative. You know, I said, I know a lot of really cool leaders, a lot of really cool people that are positive people. And I want to try to inject some positivity into the world. So there you go. All sudden, I had a purpose for my podcast, which was to focus on positive leaders. And then my wife and I were sitting on the back patio one night drinking wine. We're trying to come up with a name for it. And

Colin Hunter:

Yeah

Brian Beckcom:

I had all different sorts of names. And my wife was like, How about lessons from leaders? And I said that's perfect. And so then we had a name that really kind of embodied the purpose of the podcast. And so, what ended up happening was I had no expectations for it. I told myself I was going to do it for a year and see what happened. It's been one of the best experiences that I've had in the last ten years; I've gotten to meet and talk to people like you that I would never have had the opportunity to meet, talk to. I think I've released 40 shows now. And one thing I did totally did not expect this, by the way, was I started noticing patterns. And people were saying the same thing. So, for example, I would have a military general. And then a district attorney, which is basically a lawyer who prosecutes criminal cases, and then I would have a sports star. And they basically are saying the same thing. And so I got a call from an Air Force Colonel. About eight months ago, a guy that I knew in college said, I have been listening to your podcast; once you give a speech to the US military, I'm doing a leadership,

Colin Hunter:

Wow

Brian Beckcom:

Leadership seminar today leadership seminar, I want you to come in and give a speech on leadership. And I said, Wow, really? And you know, my first thought was to be totally honest with you, Colin?

Colin Hunter:

Yep.

Brian Beckcom:

My first thought was no way. I'm too nervous. I'm too scared. I can't do that. Why would I want to talk to all these military people in these uniforms? And what if I didn't do a good job and all these negative thoughts that came into my mind? You know what? Enabled me to say yes, was my martial arts training?

Colin Hunter:

Yeah,

Brian Beckcom:

Because my martial arts training has given me confidence that I didn't have before, that's one of the big benefits of that. But in any event, I gave a speech, and it's actually on my web, my YouTube page lessons from leaders with Brian Beckcom. And I gave this speech, and speech is about what I call the five fundamental principles of leadership. And basically, I play clips from different podcast guests who are saying essentially the same thing. And so, I'm not saying these are all the leadership principles. I'm not saying there might be other leadership principles. But to me, if you have these five fundamental leadership principles, and it's basically things like the number one principle is, leaders are servants, good leaders think their job is to help the people they lead. Another principle is good leaders don't ask their people to do things they wouldn't do. But it's been like I said, an incredible, incredible experience. I'm actually working on a book right now that's going to be taken from the podcast in the book is, I think, going to be called Lessons from lessons from leaders, or something like that. So

Colin Hunter:

Good

Brian Beckcom:

But it's been it's a blast, and you know, the opportunities to meet people like you and some of my other guests, it's just been life-changing for me.

Colin Hunter:

Yeah. Well, we've got commonality because when we're trying to work out the name for our business potential squared, my wife and I had a few bottles of wine. And we tried every name flying pigs, consulting everything. And eventually, my wife turned around a min later and said, you just need a bit more positivity. In fact, you need positivity squared, and that's where potential squared came up to bring that to life. But it's interesting that's led to the book. So there are common themes here. But for me, it's about giving back. Isn't it's about giving principles that people can trial and have a go at and experiment in their life, which is growth,

Brian Beckcom:

In addition to my dad's teachings about never quitting and being persistent. What's given me a lot of confidence and a lot less concern about, quote, failure is martial arts. Because, you know, especially when you start martial arts, you go in there, and you fail every single time you do. Right. You got bruises and everything. And so you're getting your butt kicked every single time you go in there. And if you're not willing to check your ego at the door, be humble, have kind of a beginner's mentality, then you're never going to make it.

Colin Hunter:

Yeah, You know, what I love about this is this common theme coming out. Humility is the key thing. And the one bit that when I wrote the book, it was all about my screw-ups and my failings and but there's something about the Japanese culture as well when you go back and the martial arts culture, whereas I loved when the Masters was won by that famous Japanese golfer. And his caddie put the flag back in the 18th and then bowed to the course. Yeah.

Brian Beckcom:

Nice, nice

Colin Hunter:

And, you know, for me, that's almost a whole something in my mind, which is life is like that, you know, we should be bound to live life as a challenging life is something we take on, but unless we can experiment less, we can have humility and humbleness as you talk about there and work it and live it then. For me, itís why to live, you know, as you say, go into a job not having a purpose. For me, you've got one chance in this life, and what are you going to do with it? That's my goal. So if your dad and there's a common theme in here as well, so my wife's grandfather was a squadron leader, I guess so, and he was one of the nicest men, brilliant men. But if your dad was to look at you now and say what he was proud about, yeah, what would he say about the two things he was proudest of you.

Brian Beckcom:

You know, that's a great question. You're going to bring tears to my eyes for the first time since I got my first stripe on my white belt. But I would say without any doubt, whatsoever he would. And the reason I know this is because it tells me this is being a great dad and husband to my wife that, you know, those are. And he says, My dad famously says that there are a million different ways to raise kids. Every parent has a different approach; the thing that matters is that they know that you care. And there are a million different ways to express that. And so I think that would probably be if my dad were to say, what are you most proud about your son, he would say he's a good father to raise his three kids and his good husband to his wife. And then beyond that, the thing that I would add to that, that I personally am very proud of, and the thing that I take a lot of personal pride in is I think I'm a good friend of my, the people that I'm friends with too, to me, that's my relationships with my family, and my friends are probably the most important thing in my life, I can't think of much that would be more important. And so put a lot of emphasis on that. I mean, you know, I'm a hard worker, but a lot of people are hard workers. And you know, I'm good at golf, and I was an athlete and all that sort of thing, I stay in pretty good shape, but at the end of the day, when I'm very hard on people to say, I don't be able to say this guy was a great lawyer or a great podcast, I was, I want to say he was a great family, man. He was a great friend. And he did what he could to make the world a better place. That's what I want people to say about me.

Colin Hunter:

I love that. I mean, I always can never remember the exact quote, but no man is poor; who was friends from It's A Wonderful Life always struck me, and one of my good friends said that one set of speech. And I'm a big believer in that, and if you can make your work about people and you can have a relationship you've got with that young lady who went on to college, and be part of people's lives, whether it's a friend or somebody who influences that life. So I think that's a key thing. Brian, this was brilliant. If people want to first when you think the book is going to come out when you're hoping?

Brian Beckcom:

Bro, that's a great question. I'm thinking probably sometime in the spring of next year. So I'm working on it right now. I've kind of got it, you know, how it goes, you've written the book, I kind of have a draft in my head. And it's kind of probably halfway done, but I got to start getting stuff on paper. But the cool thing about it is it's not going to be lessons from me,

Colin Hunter:

Yeah

Brian Beckcom:

That's going to be lessons from the people that are interviewed, and it's going to be the commonalities between, so the book almost in a way writes itself.

Colin Hunter:

Nice. Well, I can recommend Cape Cod, Massachusetts, because that's where a real mastermind and just beautiful scenery and everything was brilliant. I'm sure people wanted to get in contact or hear more about you. Where's the best PR system to deal with Brian?

Brian Beckcom:

Yeah, so I'm all over social media. It's my social media under my name Brian Beckcom, and it's kind of unusual sewing. It's B-E-C-K-C-O-M BECKCOM. So it's like beck.com; most people forget that second C. But my podcast and my art, where I host all my articles on my podcast, are Brian beckcom.org. My law firm is VB attorneys. That's V as in Victor B as in Brian VB attorneys.com. And then I'm on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook. I'm pretty active on LinkedIn and social media. So and I love it when people reach out to me because I've gotten to meet some really cool people, frankly, on social media and through the podcast, so but anyway, that's probably the best way to get a hold of me,

Colin Hunter:

Cool, and I can't go without saying that all those British viewers don't ride David Beckham. Yeah. Or no relationship to that. Are you

Brian Beckcom:

Maybe distantly. Distantly? Yeah. I was a basketball player in high school in college. But you know, people constantly spelled my name just like David Beckham. Plus, I'm six, one and a half blonde here. So yeah. I just need to get a bunch of tattoos. Right.

Colin Hunter:

Brian is a broom. Brilliant. Thank you for coming on. And I'm sure everybody's enjoyed this conversation. And when the book comes out, love to have you back on, and we can talk more about it. So that'd be brilliant, yeah.

Brian Beckcom:

thank you so much, Colin. It's was great seeing you again; like I said, best of luck to you. With your book launch coming up at the end of September. I'll make sure to spread the word around on my network, and your podcast episode will be released right about that time too. So everybody should look forward to that too. But thank you very, very much for having me on the show today.

Colin Hunter:

Huge pleasure. Huge pleasure, sir. Thank you.

Brian Beckcom:

Yep. Okay, man.

Colin Hunter:

Well, folks, that conversation with Brian, it's one of those conversations that always reminds me that there are certain people you meet in your life that you just love, to talk to, love to be listened to by them, which Brian has a real skill to that he has a warmth and engagement that come through in that podcast and listening to his conversation. I also just like the work that he's done around understanding the impact his father has had in his life, but also this restless piece that he's got about what he's doing in his work as a lawyer work in society and his exploration of experimentation with different things which leads me to think about how I come across to other people. And in a good way, his experimentation with his work as martial arts is something we can all take a lesson from, and I thought from today, so glad I had the chance to get them on the podcast, and I'm sure you will have enjoyed that conversation. I look forward to welcome you back to another episode of the leadership tales podcast.

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