What Keeps Magic Johnson Awake at Night?


I had decided weeks ago to stop ranting about brand. I really did. Give your readers a break, I told myself. Don’t sound like a crazy, old man who keeps yammering about the same thing week after week.

And I did it, too. I spent a couple of weeks talking about content marketing. This week, I had every intention of launching a “back to basics” series. The first one was going to be on tips for writing an effective press release.

Then I hung out for an hour or so with my new BFF, Earvin “Magic” Johnson.

Ok, in truth it was more like 700 of us at the CCUL/NCUL REACH conference hung out with our new BFF, Magic Johnson. To say that he was the warmest, most engaging, most genuine speaker I’ve ever seen would be an understatement.

During the course of his presentation, he mentioned a couple of times the importance of performing a SWOT analysis. He said he performs one semi-annually and that they’re invaluable to keeping his many enterprises on track.

He never explained what SWOT stood for, so during the Q&A portion, a woman who wasn’t familiar with the term asked him to elaborate.

Magic explained that SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. He told the audience that his organization’s strengths lie in delivering the best customer service – taking care of their clients. He said he’s able to deliver a profit not only to his own company, but to his business partners as well. He noted his top-notch employees as a strength.

He went on to say that last year when he performed a SWOT analysis, he realized that although his company had landed some major deals, he didn’t have a big enough executive team to manage all of them. Thanks to the SWOT analysis, he identified and addressed the issue before it had become a real problem. “That SWOT saved me,” he told the group.

When you’re an NBA hall-of-famer, a major-league baseball owner, and the most successful African-American businessman in America, there seems to be no shortage of opportunities. Magic told us that he recently entered the healthcare space and is now evaluating about a half dozen proposals that would put him in the technology biz.

And then he got to threats. What keeps Magic Johnson awake at night? You’ve put up with all my drivel just to have that question answered.

“Keeping my brand safe,” said Magic. “That’s the biggest threat for me right now. Making sure I don’t damage my brand. Making sure I don’t partner with the wrong companies, because that could hurt my brand quick. That’s what keeps me up at night.”

So there you have it. One of the most successful entrepreneurs in the country says the thing that worries him most is possible damage to his brand. Could it be that’s exactly why he’s one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the country? You bet your sweet bippy.

That is all.

#branding #SWOT #Lakers

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© 2015 by John F. San Filippo

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