I Used to Be Somebody: (Un)Retirement Lessons Learned

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Scott Miller Interview: "Roger That" -- Push Past Your Fears!

Diana Landau | October 26, 2021

 
Carl talks with Scott Miller, who landed his dream job at 56 after having many different acts—and he’s still chasing his dreams. He is currently a pilot for a major airline but is also an aviation professor, flight instructor, TV broadcaster, Tiki enthusiast, and silent business investor in the restaurant world, including, of course, a Tiki Bar. Scott is a man of many passions and his enthusiasm is infectious.

 

In college, Scott enrolled in the San Jose State aviation program and thought his course was set. He had intended to join the Navy to gain flight experience, but a medical issue made him change course and he then decided to become a civilian flight instructor. Although he thought that job would lead him to his ultimate goal, he discovered he really liked it. “I was shocked by how much I enjoyed teaching and being an instructor,” Scott tells us.

 

By 2009, Scott was also a pilot for a regional airline when the recession hit. Wanting to return back to Sacramento, he changed course again, this time teaching in a new aviation program that Sacramento City College had just launched. “I wasn’t flying, but at least I was talking and teaching about flying,” Scott says. He was nervous. He hadn’t taught a room full of 40 students before. “When the students at the end of that first semester were able to do well on the FAA tests, I knew I had done my job. I took a breath, knowing I was able to do this.”

 

During that time, Scott took on yet another act when a local TV station called, wanting expert advice on a recent major airplane accident. “I wasn’t nervous, because I was talking about flying!” Gigs at CNN and other stations followed. By 2015, opportunities with major airlines came calling. Even though he was a tenured professor by then, he jumped at the chance to fly again. Scott eventually became a full-time pilot for a major airline at age 56. “I thought I was completely past realizing that dream,” he reflects. Now 58, he still appears in news programs, part-time teaches aviation and flight instruction, in addition to his full-time dream job. Clearly, Scott’s drive to seek new heights keeps him going.
 
Scott’s (Un)retirement insights:
•“I developed a passion at a very young age. Obviously, that passion has driven a lot of the decisions I have made in life!”
•“If there’s something you truly want to do, give it a try and go for it. Make them tell you ‘No’!”
 
• This Week's Sponsor is LoveMyHeartStudy.com or call (866) 955-1594
• Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Pickleball Media. After 15 years in corporate marketing, in 2012 she pivoted to write and wrangle content for Niche Media's weekly blog. She now manages the “I Used to Be Somebody” weekly blog.

 

Tags:    blog   interview   scott miller   pilot   investor   unretirement   sacramento   dreams  

Bob Franceschelli Interview: Big Time Beer Exec and now Pickleball Fanatic -- "Goes for The Whole Nine Yards"

Diana Landau | October 12, 2021

 
Carl talks with Bob Franceschelli, a former top exec for Anheuser Busch, CEO for a new cardiac rehab program, present Board Member of USA Pickleball Association (USAPA), and more. Bob "goes for the whole nine yards" -- he really feels like anything and everything is possible. This is exactly Bob Franceschelli‘s vision for how he’s living his (un)retirement.

Bob grew up in an Italian family outside of Springfield, MA. As a college student, Bob took some marketing classes. “I have always liked being involved in a lot of different things with a lot of different people, having fun along the way. I did a case study on the beer industry and the lights just went on.”

Planning his next steps, he took an internship in college with a beer distributor, offering to work for free in exchange for help getting interviews after graduation. Bob’s rising career at Anheuser Busch (AB) included show product placement, working with the Rolling Stones and George Strait among others. He developed and built alliances with smaller craft brewers. In 2001, he led the test development and product launch of Michelob Ultra. In 2010 and after 28 years with AB, Bob went on to rejuvenate profit at the Pritikin Longevity Center, commuting every week from his home in St. Louis, Mo. to Miami. He then developed and launched their new intensive Cardiac Rehab division.

Always interested in living a healthy lifestyle, Bob, now 62, had to make some decisions. “I had a 6.5 hour back surgery in 2008, due to broken vertebrae and a disc issue … and have two 4” and two 5” screws in my back. Then, in 2015 … I had a total hip replaced. I truly feel blessed to be as mobile as I am to play Pickleball … and part is the lifestyle--- eat right, exercise, healthy mind--- and part was surgical.”

Bob and his wife now play Pickleball several times a week, and he is a 4.5 level player (!) as well as a Board Member for the USAPA. Bob and his wife have created a detailed bucket list that they review and update often—whether it’s taking off to rent an RV and touring the parks in Utah and Colorado for a couple of weeks or daily stuff like learning to make maple syrup from their own backyard trees—and wanting to play much more pickleball, of course.

 

Bob Franceschelli’s Top Tips:
• “It’s important to have a mindful approach to (un)retirement. You have to really think and plan for what you really want to do.” 
• “The key to this (un)retirement thing (for me) is that I love having structure but I also love having some flexibility. Get out there and just try something!”
 
• More about Bob Franceschelli: https://www.linkedin.com/in/robertfranceschelli/
• This Week's Sponsor is LoveMyHeartStudy.com or call (866) 955-1594
 
Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Pickleball Media. After 15 years in corporate marketing, in 2012 she pivoted to write and wrangle content for Niche Media's weekly blog. She now manages the “I Used to Be Somebody” weekly blog.

 

Tags:    Bob Franceschelli   blog   interview   Anheuser Busch   ceo   pickleball   unretirement  

Paul Ollinger Interview: Former Facebook Exec Turn Comedian -- “Now I’m Me!”

Diana Landau | October 05, 2021

 
Carl talks with Paul Ollinger, an author, stand-up comedian and host of the Crazy Money podcast. He also has an MBA from Dartmouth’s Tuck School and was one of the first 250 employees of Facebook, where he served as VP of West Coast Sales. You could say Paul is on his third successful career at this point.
 
Paul grew up in a suburb of Atlanta, one of six kids from a big Catholic family. His father was an engineer for a Georgia utility company and although there was money, his parents were frugal and there was a strict budget. Paul felt that anxiety about money as a kid and as his careers at Facebook and in comedy rewarded him, he realized that no matter how much money you make, you can still feel stressed about it. His podcast, Crazy Money is not about how to make more money but about exploring the connection between money, happiness, work and meaning.
 
Paul’s path to success has been anything but linear. After college and a focus on business, Paul made his first attempt to become a stand-up comedian and became a host at LA comedy clubs, opening for many big names at the time. Then he got married and started thinking about a more stable career for raising a family. A friend asked him if he wanted to be part of this new social media start-up company—he became the 250th employee at Facebook.
 
After relocations to other cities and promotions, in 2012 Paul left his very financially secure job and decided to put down roots for his young family. Atlanta was home. For the first few years, Paul wasn’t sure what to do. “I didn’t go toward anything after I quit my job.” He then worked for a year but knew it wasn’t the right fit. He decided to face his real fear—would he fail if he went back to comedy? He started writing every day, got himself into the comedy scenes in various cities and committed to his new path.
 
Carl agreed that forging an entirely new career is scary—but it’s invigorating! Paul noted that the nervousness means you really care about what you’re doing because you want to figure it out. “Breaking ourselves out of the mode by which we’ve been measuring ourselves for past decades is highly disconcerting, but it’s what you need to do to find a new path in the post-corporate world.” Now in 2021, Paul has a very successful career as a stand-up comedian, author and speaker, and is also busy hosting his podcast. From a young age, Paul has been driven to push himself to new heights. “I just want to get so much better at everything I do!”
 
(Un)retirement advice from Paul Ollinger:
  • “Change your metrics! The way you’ve been evaluating your life in the work world will be very different afterwards. And if you’re looking for external validation like bonuses and titles and being known in the industry, that goes away…..YOU have to be the one to monitor your own progress.”
  • “We need to have a longer term ‘through line’ in our lives. That’s where the meaning lives. The sooner you can get on it and it feels authentic to you, the sooner you’ll get to this is me, this is my life.”
  • “Let go of worrying about anyone else. You are doing (this new path) for you. The world may not notice. Do it because it’s an expression of who you are without any external reward.”

 

• More about Paul Ollinger and his podcast Crazy Money: https://paulollinger.com/about/
• Sponsored by: lovemyheartstudy.com or call (866) 955-1594

 

Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Pickleball Media. After 15 years in corporate marketing, in 2012 she pivoted to write and wrangle content for Niche Media's weekly blog. She now manages the “I Used to Be Somebody” weekly blog.

 

Tags:    blog   facebook   executive   unretirement   comedy   paul ollinger   crazy money   dartmouth   career  

Michael Clinton Interview: Modern-Day Renaissance Man

Diana Landau | September 14, 2021

 

Get ready to be inspired by Carl’s interview with the former President of Hearst Magazines, Michael Clinton. Besides having a huge Publishing career overseeing Esquire, House Beautiful, Food Network Magazine, Oprah, (the list goes on), he’s traveled to 124 countries so far and run marathons on seven continents. Now 68, he’s a special advisor to the CEO of Hearst Corporation, a writer, photographer, global marathon runner and private pilot who has just released his latest book, ROAR: into the second half of your life (Before It’s Too Late.)

 

Michael has an innate, passionate curiosity about the world and is full of surprises. We sort of assumed Michael had this huge publishing career in NYC because he came from some upper-crust, Ivy League background. It’s been his incredible dedication and focus that led Michael to where he is now. He comes from a poor, working-class family of eight from Pittsburgh, PA. His father was a laborer and his mother was home with the six kids. “There was lots of love,” Michael says. His parents may have been poor but they exposed their children to art, culture and libraries. Discovering the world through books and literature became fundamental to Michael’s life, igniting his love of words.

 

One of only 20 or so from his high school class to go on to college, he studied economics and political science and then became editor of the college newspaper, stoking his passion for publishing. After graduation, he went to NYC with “$60 in my pocket, no contacts and two months on a couch.” His first big break was to become Publisher of Conde Nast's GQ Magazine, at only 34 years old. He spent his last 23 years with Hearst. But he doesn’t want anyone to say ‘retire’ because it is such a toxic word! It implies passivity.

 

After Hearst, Michael kept seeing books about slowing down, aging, making your life smaller. “I wanted to do exactly the opposite. I wanted to find other people who felt the same way.” Michael interviewed 40 people about what they’re doing now for his new book. Now he is looking forward to more heights in traveling, photography, outdoor sports and philanthropy, plus a deep dive into becoming an entrepreneur. He plans to continue inspiring people 50+ to “rewire” their lives.

 

Life Wisdom from Michael Clinton:
  • “The importance of having a professional mentor should not be dismissed. I will always advise and encourage people to seek out the mentor that can help them evolve and grow in their career.”
  • “Editing is an important skill in publishing, of course. What it teaches you is to edit out the extraneous things that don’t matter.” (Think wasting social media, unproductive friendships, unsupportive family.) “Find people who will lift you up!”
  • Michael loathes the term “mid-life crisis.” “It should be mid-life awakening,” he says. Think about whether you need to shift course. If you’re healthy and 60, there’s a good chance you’ll live longer—a three-decade arc of opportunity.

 

• More about Michael Clinton: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Clinton
 
• Michael's book ROAR: https://roarbymichaelclinton.com/
 
Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Pickleball Media. After 15 years in corporate marketing, in 2012 she pivoted to write and wrangle content for Niche Media's weekly blog. She now manages the “I Used to Be Somebody” weekly blog.

 

Tags:    blog   interview   michael clinton   magazines   publishing   unretirement   editor  

What Was Your Worst Job Ever?

Carl Landau | July 13, 2021

 
My opening question for every episode of I Used to be Somebody is an "ice breaker" question for the guest. Ice breaker questions are a great lead-in, whenever you meet someone new. It's often a question I ask that's a little off beat and it often reveals a lot about that person. And the answer will give you a bird's eye view of who that person is, as well as their outlook on life.
 
I've asked this question a lot to people over the years, people who have had very successful careers. For most part, they have had some truly crappy jobs in the beginning of their work lives. But it seems everyone I've talked with has learned something from those experiences. (Like what not to do!)
 
When guests start talking about their first jobs or their worst job, they become very animated and you also learn what kind of storyteller they are. That time brings them back, and they tell their story, which helps make the interview for my show better. For the audience, the last thing you want to listen to is stock answers and corporate speak. (I know I don't!) Right from the get go, the guests become more personable and more real--which is the goal. 
 
So there is some thought in my craziness.
 
Sure enough, after reading the podcast results so far, it ends up that the most commented part of the podcast interviews from listeners is often the "ice breaker" questions. So I thought, "Why not put together an episode of just my ice breaker questions (and always interesting answers)?" This bonus episode is really entertaining and will give you some instant insight as to where this guest came from and who they are. Enjoy!
 
• Sponsored by: lovemyheartstudy.com or call (866) 955-1594
 
• Sponsored by The Monkey Creative: themonkeycreative.com
 
Carl Landau is the Creative Genius here at Pickleball Media. He is the former Grand Poobah at Niche Media. 
Tags:    blog   worst jobs   unretirement   working   job   interview   bonus episode  

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