Marques Ogden | From Gridiron to Glory

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About This Episode

Have you ever made a bad decision that nearly costs you everything? Former NFL player Marques Ogden joins John to share his incredible story from making eight figures to $8.25 an hour! Marques turned his pain into passion and is sharing his failures to help others succeed! Don’t miss this inspiring success story.
Marques Ogden’s Website



00:00:03] Speaker 1 Welcome to another episode of the Go with John Show. I’m going to take my glasses off. This is our first remote recording and we have Marques Ogden with us today. Welcome.


[00:00:15] Speaker 2 Marques How are you doing? John Thanks for having me on, sir.


[00:00:17] Speaker 1 Yeah, thanks for taking time to chat with us today. So, Marques, we’ve got limited time today and you’ve got an incredible story, and I’m just going to jump right into it. And I’ve got questions in here that I don’t want to talk to you about, but you’re a former NFL football player and you’ve had some challenges in your life. So tell us a little bit about your story.


[00:00:38] Speaker 2 So I’m from Washington, D.C., went to Howard University. I ended up moving to Jacksonville. I was drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars after a six year NFL career. Things were phenomenal. I got out. I struggle with alcohol addiction, nightlife. I founded a construction company I built to be the largest African-American Chop’s product and company in Baltimore State for two years, ended up losing everything in 2008 because I made a bad decision and I had to move to Hollywood, Georgia, with only $400 to my name.


[00:01:22] Speaker 1 Oh, my goodness. Oh, my goodness. Okay, so you’re in Raleigh, North Carolina, then what happens?


[00:01:29] Speaker 2 So I end up here to Raleigh and I ended up working for Merrill Lynch for a short time. I got fired from that job, went to a construction company the next day, hired from that job five days later, and the only job I could get jobs and custodian making $8.03 an hour on the graveyard shift. And I worked from 10 p.m. until 5 a.m. and I ended up having my rock bottom for clarity as a custodian. And that was determined driving for me to turn my life around, start a keynote speaker. I didn’t get a paid job for two and a half years, got my first pay job April 2016. And since then we’ve worked for, as of yesterday, 48 auction houses. Speaker We are a three time best selling author, coach consulting with our own podcast and we’re doing great. But again, a lot of challenges, John, to get over here today.


[00:02:30] Speaker 1 How long were you a custodian on the graveyard shift? How many weeks, months, years.


[00:02:36] Speaker 2 Six months.


[00:02:37] Speaker 1 Six months? And then how long did it take you to realize into that period that that you needed to make a change?


[00:02:47] Speaker 2 It took me about a month because I started work as a custodian in September of 2013. I had my rock hard moment clarity. At the end of September 2013 sales about a month that it took what I wanted to do my job. I still realized I had to work to pay the bills. So I did those things and I made my to take care of my responsibilities. But that first month in academics, well, that’s when I realized I had to be together now.


[00:03:20] Speaker 1 Right. So who was your biggest cheerleader during that time period? Did you have one?


[00:03:27] Speaker 2 Yeah, I would say that my biggest cheer was probably my sister, Gina. She always helped me to stay positive. She always helped me to stay inspire, and there would be nowhere to give up. She didn’t let me see me forward as a result of her and her nudging me kind of good, right? Yeah. So.


[00:03:52] Speaker 1 Fantastic. Fantastic. Okay, so you start your company and then I guess tell me a little bit about what you are doing now. So I started the episode out about I’m going to pull from my tea, right? So and I’ve obviously watched some of your videos with your great speaker and you’ve got a great message. And I you know, I spent probably about an hour, hour and a half this morning watching your work. And it’s it’s very impressive. But talk to us about pulling from your key.


[00:04:25] Speaker 2 So in order to pull from your your key. That’s a great question, John. You have to maintain balance. You have to maintain a strong mindset. A strong mindset is how you view or how you attack the world or your day and you face difficulty, adversity, hard times. You don’t give up your charity and keep pressing forward as a result of learning how to balance myself and how to do my own thing, or be energetic or calm or be more focused, be more relaxed. I’ve learned how to always have a strong mindset, and no matter what you do in life, if you have a strong mindset that everything else will take care of itself.


[00:05:13] Speaker 1 Right? And if your mindset is weak, then you need Gina.


[00:05:18] Speaker 2 That’s right. I meant to tell you that when I talked to her. Yeah. That if your mindset is our job, if your mindset is execution, it will be for.


[00:05:35] Speaker 1 Right? Absolutely. Absolutely. So if your mindset is weak, your execution will be poor. Talk to us about anger. And you know, so. So when we when we teed up for the show today, we were going to talk about servant leadership. Is is is what we were going to talk to about that. And I think within that you talk about anger in your in your keynote speeches. So let’s touch on that for a little bit, because I think that’s good. Good stuff.


[00:06:03] Speaker 2 That’s a good question, John. So that comes from what we call the personality traits. Right. So things like anger, loss, envy, jealousy, greed and people who are living out personality traits. Right, John? Yes. Out for themselves. They’re only out for what they can gain from others. The problem with that is if that’s how you are, if that’s what your life is like, then what will happen is you will always live a life. What I call shortsighted and all about external motivating factors like money free say things that actually mean nothing. So that’s how and why our keynote speaking clients is will live your life either character, ethics, true loyalty, honesty, being fair, being kind because you’re living for others. Great. Look, Bob, for perfect go getter the law of influence. When you put other people’s needs abundantly before yours, influence them for the better. And that’s how we have to live, how life, and that’s how we live our brand going forward.


[00:07:18] Speaker 1 Right, right, right. Fantastic. So so talk to us a little bit about emotional intelligence.


[00:07:27] Speaker 2 So emotional intelligence is the ability to connect with people and understand exactly what they’re going through, either through compassion and empathy. It’s all about our ability as a human being to have strong IQ and is our ability, religion or simplistically, to connect with people. If we connect with people through empathy, compassion, love, that dignity. And what happens is they feel that it’s a transactional process or sale they feel is relationship driven. And we’re like, good friends. Get you a book on strategic influence, and it talks about relationships. It’s all about creating trust alliances. And so correct, because I always tell people relationships are the old and the new currency.


[00:08:24] Speaker 1 Right. Right. That’s. Yeah, that’s good. That is true. That is true. And, you know, we’ve got a lot of folks that come on this show. I’ve had CEOs on and I’ve had small business owners on, and they all they all go back to their relationships and how important the relationships are. And if you don’t have good people around you and if you don’t have good relationships, you can’t really get much done at home or at work, right? You got to have good relationships with your family and you got to have good relationships with your with your team, with your team. So. Go ahead.


[00:08:58] Speaker 2 Amen.


[00:08:59] Speaker 1 Yep. Yep. So so let me talk because we’ve got about 10 minutes left and I’m you know, really, I appreciate all that. And I would encourage folks that are listening to get to your website Marques Ogden dot com it’s easy you type in Marques MMR to. Yes and as soon as you hit that oh Google knows we’re looking for you because they auto fill it in so you’re doing something right with your with your SEO. But so I’m curious, just on a personal level, how do you know I’m talking about feelings and tapping in to like the moment when you’re a custodian and to where you are now. Can you spin us a little story about coming from Howard University, go into play with with the Jacksonville Jaguars and how did you like what were the emotions when you got into the NFL and did you feel like you had made it and the rest of your life was just going to be a certain way? And then.


[00:09:54] Speaker 2 What.


[00:09:55] Speaker 1 Happened when when you when you got to be a custodian versus how do you feel now? Like, I’m really curious about how do you feel internally about your success today versus how did you feel when you were on the field playing football with the Jaguars?


[00:10:11] Speaker 2 So today I feel a different form of success and prosperity because I’m helping a lot more people versus football. You’re all about your teammates, you’re all about your fan base, you’re all about your coaches, the owners. It’s not as big of a reach of helping people. So right through the day, it’s a lot more fulfilling for me because I’m all about helping others, also helping people create and receive opportunities. I’m all about helping people create relationships. I’m all about helping people formulate what they need to formulate in their mind to get what they want to do. So it’s a different feeling. It’s a different euphoria. When you’re out here helping others, you’re out here doing the work that you know you’re all to do and that you’re passionate about and doing right job for the rest of your life. Yeah, that’s who was speaking. Coaching, consulting. Our podcast got me very fortunate that we have a strong base of people who are always doing our work, our podcast, the workout, all that type of stuff. So reality TV, what I do today is I played the National Football League.


[00:11:36] Speaker 1 Right? Right. So, so was it, was it harder for you to achieve your success, public speaking or was it harder to achieve success? I know it’s a totally different comparison, but was which ladder was was more challenging for you?


[00:11:52] Speaker 2 Great question. I would definitely say the public speaking because in football I at least knew I had the natural talent to do it right. Oh my gosh. I had talent and were working hard. But I always had a great work ethic and a natural talent for football with public speaking, keynote speaking. When I started it, I really didn’t know if I had talent or not, really didn’t know if I had the juice or not. I don’t really have the ability to do it, so it’s really hard to get going at the beginning. You don’t know how to do a speech, you don’t know how to reach an audience, you don’t know how to provide value. It becomes very difficult in Archie CSP to figure out, Is this your calling? And it took me two and a half years to get my first job. It took me over five years, almost five. Figure out how to turn my pain to my passion. It took me it took me a total of about seven years actually figure out how to craft custom key, know how to actually find out what the client’s needs are, how to craft a message that is really custom fit to every client. And when I took that out, it got a lot better. But still, it’s really hard with speaking because there’s a lot more people that want to do it now. There’s a lot of guys who want the football, but it’s still very small in comparison to how many people. The world needs you, even though people say they’d rather drive with public speed. There’s a lot that want to do it right. Ha! And you have to. You’re after that market space, which is not easy. That was part of the market space, right, John? Yes. You got to deliver. You got to have follow up to get where you want to go.


[00:13:48] Speaker 1 Yep, yep, yep. That’s fantastic. So you said something in there that kind of resonated with me, and that is you had to figure out how to take your pain and use that energy to turn it into success. So I think we’ve all had I mean, I’ve had my challenges in my life. Some folks know about them, but taking that pain and that energy for me personally is is a massive motivating driver. When you’re at the bottom of the barrel and you have nowhere to go and you have nothing. I think there’s some fear that kicks in, right, that just that just sets off some kind of internal energy that says it’s almost like you’re being chased by a wild tiger, that you’ve got to get up and run or you’re going to die. So how how did you take that pain? How did you harness that energy and turn it into success?


[00:14:40] Speaker 2 So when I figured out what I found out, right, John, is that everybody has lots of things in their classes or they have some sort of energy in their life. And once I figured out that my pain could be my purpose, to help others, not to ignore their pain and to feel shame about their pain, you to feel discouraged about their struggles. That’s when I said, okay, Marques, it’s time to go ahead and get out of the comfort zone and start talking about your strength and start talking about your failures. If you follow the crowd, you will only go as far as the crowd is right off on your own. There’s no limit to the success that you can achieve. So I started to follow my own desire to have a comfort zone and share my story and share other things with people in that regard. So that’s really something that I hope people learn from me is that we all make mistakes. Just own them, fix them and move on.


[00:15:48] Speaker 1 Amen. Back at you. So let me let me say, Marques, I really I know I got to respect your time. And I so appreciate you carving out a portion of your day here to come in and talk to me and share your story with our listeners in the last couple of minutes that we have left. Is there any you know, you just gave us a great piece of advice. Is there any one thing that you want to say or is there anything you want to add to the conversation that we’ve had today?


[00:16:15] Speaker 2 I’ll tell your listeners this a great quote by Aristotle In times of extreme darkness, focus on the life. What I believe is, was that we are the light that has to push through the adversity, the difficulty, the hard times, the arduous times. We can learn how to focus and dig in our heels and learn how to utilize our strengths, utilize what we have and what we can bring to the table to help ourselves and help others. That we are the light that can get through any darkness to get to the other side.


[00:16:59] Speaker 1 Fantastic. And with that, we will leave it lay. Marques Ogden. Marques Ogden. Dot com. Go check them out. Thank you, sir. Appreciate you coming in today and talking with us. And that will conclude another episode of the Go with John Show. And as always, go out there and build something extraordinary. Thank you, Marques.