Life has been known to throw a mean curveball. And when the break is hard enough to knock you off your feet, your ability to get back up is the only part that matters. Overcoming challenges critical in life, and one of the things that baseball happens to teach best. Because unlike others, America’s pastime is a sport that is actually rooted in failure.
Think about it. For batters, a season average of 0.300 is considered great. And higher than 0.400? Almost unheard of in modern baseball. Aside from meteorology, I can’t think of any other profession where a hit ratio – pun intended – of four times in ten is considered a success, and it’s just one of many examples.
These lessons in resilience are the foundation of some of my most impactful keynote speeches. Something about real-life moments from the baseball diamond that I witnessed as a sports broadcaster always resonate with the corporate audiences I work with. The lessons continue on my podcast Rounding the Bases, the show about leadership and culture with a baseball twist. I regularly host business leaders who have achieved incredible success. And while we have all been faced with overcoming challenges at some point in our lives, the resilience of one recent guest actually outweighs her incredible success several times over.
A life-changing diagnosis left her future anything but certain. But she knew without a doubt that she wanted to do more than survive, she wanted to thrive. And in the twenty years that have since passed, she’s made every day count towards doing just that.
Her name is Kim Becking, the multi-hyphenate rockstar of resilience with a reputation for success. She’s an entrepreneur, celebrated philanthropist and best-selling author whose honesty and energy have captivated audiences for years. Educated by experience and gifted with time, Kim encourages them to see adversity as the motivation that it is, and em powers them to reclaim a life that’s better than ever before.
SINGLE: Genuine Intelligence
Kim considers herself a member of many recovery programs. One of those is litigation, and the other is politics. In fact, she left her high-paying legal career upon receiving an incredible opportunity from Emanuel Cleaver, Kansas City’s first African-American mayor and now-Congressman. “I was often the youngest, the only female and the only Caucasian in the room,” Kim shared about her early days on Cleaver’s team. “I was learning about emotional intelligence and dealing with different types of people before I knew what emotional intelligence was.”
Working with diverse groups, especially in politics, taught her a valuable lesson about overcoming challenges without losing herself. Every day she showed up with her values, integrity and knowledge of what she was – and even more importantly, wasn’t – willing to do intact. “That’s key to being a leader,” she said. And even though she didn’t know it then, that experience laid the groundwork for her now-profession in leadership development.
DOUBLE: Overcoming Challenges
By nature, Kim is a vibrant, energetic person. But her resolve was tested when she was diagnosed with breast cancer at just 30 years old. “That was a wake-up call for me,” she remembered.
At the time when Kim found her lump, the general opinion of the medical community was that young women simply didn’t get breast cancer. Doctors were dismissive. Mortality rates were high. And instead of watching, waiting and coming back in six months as prescribed, she decided to act. Kim had a wide network of media contacts from her very high-profile profession. Those contacts turned her into a poster child for young women with breast cancer. But throughout the experience, she also found the fortitude to write her best-selling book.
Nordie’s at Noon was co-authored by Kim and three other young women who were also battling cancer. After receiving their respective diagnoses, the group would regularly meet at Nordstrom Cafe for lunch and retail therapy. They wrote the book to chronicle their experience overcoming challenges so they could share it with others. It began as a mechanism to share that young women can – and do – get cancer, but evolved into an even stronger message about friendship, hope and determination.
TRIPLE: The Platinum Rule
We’ve all heard the Golden Rule that reminds us to treat other people the way we want to be treated. It’s practiced personally and professionally. But as the Great Resignation unfolds all around us, that alone is no longer enough to keep employees happy…or to keep them at all. Kim has found a solution to overcoming challenges in the workplace by taking a different approach. And step one is to meet people where they already are.
She does this by using something she calls The Platinum Rule. It’s a lesson about treating people the way they want to be treated. The shift from the Golden one that many of us were raised on is subtle, but has potential to yield major results. “You have to understand where they’re coming from,” the leadership expert insists. “You have to make the time.”
HOME RUN: Bouncing Forward
Every one of us deals with overcoming challenges. It’s as much a part of the human experience as anything. “There’s no such thing as work-life balance,” she explained. “All of our personal and professional experiences integrate.” And she’s absolutely right.
Our lives are our own, wherever they are happening. And what has uniquely positioned Kim to find success has been her ability to concentrate her challenges into lessons that other people can learn from. Or as she puts it, using them to bounce forward instead of bounce back.
With that in mind, she also understands that every audience needs to hear something different. By approaching each one of them from a place of service, Kim is able to use storytelling and real life examples to inspire. “I focus on them. That’s what it’s all about,” she said. And it’s that place, the one where it all comes together, that she calls magic.
Listen to the full interview here or tune in to Rounding the Bases every Monday and Thursday, available wherever you get your podcasts.
Learn More About Overcoming Challenges from Joel
Book Joel Goldberg for your next corporate event. He draws on over 25 years of experience as a sports broadcaster. In addition, he brings unique perspectives and lessons learned from some of the world’s most successful organizations. Whatever your profession, Joel is the keynote speaker who can help your team achieve a championship state of mind.
Joel Goldberg 0:04
Welcome into Rounding the Bases the podcast about culture and leadership with a baseball twist presented by Community America Credit Union: believe in unbelievable. And so I know all my friends, Community America Credit Union are busy with all the usual stuff not to mention all their involvement with Royals, with Chiefs and everything else going on. And so love the partnership with them. And also really enjoy the relationship I have with Chief of Staff Kansas City. If you’re interested, if you’re in the job market, if you’re hiring someone, they’re a great resource. I love the work that I’m able to do with them. So check them out. They care about people. That’s what matters most, Making Connections That Matter. Chief of firstname.lastname@example.org Let’s get on to the guest for this episode. Challenges in life are inevitable. It’s how you respond to them that defines you. When today’s guest received a life changing diagnosis her future was anything but certain. But she knew without a doubt that she wanted to do more than just survive, she was going to thrive. And in the 20 years that have since passed, she’s made everyday count towards doing just that. On the episode today is Kim Becking, a rockstar of resilience with a reputation for success. She’s an entrepreneur, celebrated philanthropist and best-selling author whose honesty and energy have captivated audiences for years. Educated by experience and gifted with time, Kim encourages them to see adversity as the motivation that it is…and empowers them to reclaim a life that’s better than ever before. I call her a friend, although we’ve never actually met in person. I guess that’s kind of the world that we’re living in right now. But we’ll get there at some point. I’m joined right now by Kim Becking, who among the many people I’ve met along the way since starting my speaking career, she is one of them, and also someone that did something else before and that was a past life. So Kim, how are you?
Kim Becking 2:17
I’m fabulous Joel. I, you know, your your intro music gets me gets me going.
Joel Goldberg 2:22
An artist, local artists by the name of AY Young, who now travels the world Jung who now travels the world as a, doing work with the United Nations. And so pretty, pretty cool stuff. And he was a guest a long while back, and I said what if we did a song…anyway. There’s so many places that we could go with this. And, you know, I’ve had a number of my speaker friends on and, and to me, it’s for the for the general audience. I think it’s less interesting to my audience about how we all became speakers and that type of stuff. Although I think we all can be speakers, you know that. But I think more just the journey because very few of us woke up. As you know, little kids or went to bed at night dreaming of I want to be a motivational speaker one day when I grew up, I don’t think that we grasped that and you like me? In a totally different, well, I’m still in my world, but you you are living in a totally different world. Tell me about that.
Kim Becking 3:16
Yeah, so I am a recovering attorney, and a recovering Public Affairs political consultant. So I’m in, I’m in lots of recovery programs, as I like to say so. And you know, I’m wearing my Royals blue today just for you. But I lived in Kansas City for about 22 years. And so, you know, moved there to go to law school, worked at a big law firm. And I knew there was something more that I could do with my talents and have the amazing opportunity to go work for the mayor in Kansas City, Emmanuel Cleaver, who’s now congressman, and was Director of Community Affairs and had that background in marketing and PR. And so just had that amazing opportunity to really just put myself right in the middle of the community and and to utilize my skills in that way. And then, you know, the mayor was termed out decide to run for Congress. He’s now in DC, I didn’t want to go to DC. And so I worked in the city council office and city planning, doing communications policy work around economic development, transportation, infrastructure, other community, you know, issues healthcare advocacy, and was diagnosed with breast cancer 20 years ago at the age of 30. And that was a wake up call for me. And so, you know, kind of in government, either you become a lifer and you stay, or you get out at some point. And I knew a lot of media at the time because of my role, and I was in a very high profile position. And as a young woman, this was before everything we have now from a social media perspective, right? So young women were being dismissed by our doctors, we were being told, come back in six months come back in a year. Let’s watch that lump. Our mortality rates were a lot higher. So it kind of became that poster child for young women and breast cancer. And out of that, you wrote a book with three other young women about our experience called Nordies At Noon. We started meeting at Nordstrom Cafe, a little retail therapy as well, and decided that we wanted to write a book about our experience to share with others that young women can and do get breast cancer and also the power of friendship and hope and, and that aspect as well to continue to thrive. And so that’s originally you know, what got me started speaking, because people started asking me, Hey, what’s your fee? I’m like, I don’t even know you could get paid to speak. Right? And, and over the years that has grown. I left the city and started my own Public Affairs and Communications company that was very successful. And then really, about four or five years ago, transitioned full time to the speaking and leadership development aspect.
Joel Goldberg 5:47
How did the the experience of working in government working in public affairs working for a mayor, I mean, I, I have an idea of how the diagnosis of cancer affected you, as much as I can know and what I’ve read in your bio, and everything like that, we’ll get into that in a bit. But working in government is a different animal, it really is. And either either you can do it, or you can’t. In some ways, I view it like my job, because it can really, it can really chew people up and spit them out.
Kim Becking 6:22
Joel Goldberg 6:23
And I sense that you could have stayed if you wanted to. And I know you’re glad that you moved on to different things. But how did that shape you to where you’re at today?
Kim Becking 6:31
Yeah, you know, and I think a part of it was the, you know, the experiences that I had at such a young age, right. I mean, I was in my late 20s. And really being put in positions. And for those that don’t know, you know, Emanuel Cleaver, was the first African American first black mayor of Kansas City. And so I was often the youngest, the only female and the only Caucasian in the room. And so being being put in situations being put in experiences where I had to learn to build that trust, right, where I had to learn to listen, to actively listen to really meet people where they are. So I was learning about emotional intelligence and dealing with different types of people before I even knew what emotional intelligence was, right? And so all of those different experiences and working with different industries and different types of people and, and then the political side, right. I mean, that can be cutthroat at times, and, and really learning to weather those storms and to be able to not lose yourself, and show up as yourself and know your values, know your integrity, know, where you stand and what you are and aren’t willing to do. And that’s a key to being a leader, right. So all of that has been translated to everything that I do now, do my leadership development work.
Joel Goldberg 7:58
And it’s such a, it’s such a different world, even now, today, politics versus when you were in it, or anyone was in it even you know, 5, 6, 7 years ago. And I always say I’ll say it again, that that I this is not a politic show, if I want to get into politics, I would. I actually happen to enjoy politics, sometimes I enjoy it in a I don’t know, in an unhealthy way of watching it like a reality television show, because it’s a train wreck, oftentimes in our country. But I’m also very aware of the fact that my audiences, whether they be who I’m speaking to, in person presenting, or whether that be on television, are not tuning in, to hear my politics.
Kim Becking 8:44
Joel Goldberg 8:45
I am of the belief that anyone has the right to say that I never begrudge an athlete who wants to share their opinions. I don’t like the whole shut up and dribble thing. My whole thing is that I’m trying to bring a full audience in, not half of an audience. And so I bring that up, because that’s a totally different world than when you are in politics. You know, you’re trying to get people on your side, you’re trying to explain your side, you’re trying to bring people together. But you’ve got an agenda. Now it’s a little bit different, as a speaker too, yet there’s so much experience that you can share. The building trust that you talked about and everything. How do you bring that all together to an audience understanding that you do have a political background, but you’re not there to talk about the current state of politis.
Kim Becking 9:29
Absolutely, I do not talk about politics and religion on stage. Right? Never gonna happen. But you know, I think a part of it is it’s about really taking all those experiences. So let me give you an example. Right? So when I decided hey, I’m gonna go all in on the on the speaking leadership development side and I left my public affairs company and my public affairs company, right. I did politics, I did advocacy work, I built coalitions. And and, you know, all of that work taught me that and Cleaver taught me this, because he had relationships with everyone, right? And it was at a time when things weren’t so toxic. And we weren’t all on an episode of Mean Girls, which we all feel like we’re on right now. So I use an example as a part of my, my programs, because I talked about change, right? How to build that momentum mindset to rock change and boost resilience and be more adaptable no matter what. So I put up a picture of the mayor and I, when I convinced him to do a virtual town hall meeting in 1998. And he didn’t want to do it. He fought me, he resisted. He’s like, I learned to do the computers when I retire, right? Like he fought me every step of the way. Like many of us do, when we’re dealing with change and uncertainty, and especially the last few years, right. And I convinced him with my persuasive, you know, recovering attorney skills that he should at least try it. And so we drove in Kansas City Star, which was the only place you could even do a virtual town hall at the time. And an amazing thing happened. He started connecting with and reaching people he had never been able to reach before. And so I use that as an example, as a part of my programs to talk about, you know, resisting change, and how, really learning to embrace it learning to you know, realize there is no normal or new normal, there’s only what is now is what is and what is next. But I use that that example from working for the mayor, right in the political realm in my keynotes, but I don’t mention anything else. You know, the other thing I always do is I use things like this as a part of that process where we’re talking about virtual technology and change. Right? You know, what this is? Did you have one of these?
Joel Goldberg 11:40
Yeah, so for those listening, if you’re watching us, the big old, what I call the suitcase cell phone, that we wouldn’t even call them cell phones at that point, right. But it was like a suitcase mobile phone that you you carry, like, you know, it’s like the size of a big fanny pack that you could lug into your car. And yeah.
Kim Becking 12:02
You plugged into your cigarette lighter.
Joel Goldberg 12:04
Plugged it into your cigarette lighter.
Kim Becking 12:05
It cost $10 a minute to use it. But but think about how far we’ve come? You know?
Joel Goldberg 12:10
Kim Becking 12:10
So I use that as an example and translate from the politics and you know, or working with different community groups, right. And people who all believe different things and think different things, just like many do in, in, in your workforce, or in organizations, where I’m working with a lot of different types of generations, or those sorts of things. But it’s a fascinating discussion, because here we are in 2022, or I’ve got imagine in 2021, the only way to communicate with people was to get on a zoom call. And if when you had the mayor do this virtual and there wasn’t really even zoom at that point. Maybe there was but we didn’t know about it, maybe that I don’t know, when zoom, I don’t think there was zoom back then. And then the computer was like huge, right? The computer was the size of a room and it took like 10 minutes to boot up.
Joel Goldberg 12:54
Yeah. But the point is, you know, Zoom did exist before the pandemic, but but most of us maybe knew about it, but didn’t use it, or when I met, everybody had to use it. And so you never know when that change is going to come. But that it’s a really important lesson for anyone and certainly your audiences, my audiences, because we’re oftentimes working with groups or people are in their offices, and you’ve got the generational gap. And you’ve got the younger generation that is already doing a lot of those things or is willing to do those things. And then you’ve got the older generation, I’m throwing Emmanuel Cleaver at that point in there. He wasn’t that old at that point. Not saying that he is now but he’s been around a long time. But I would imagine that he would do a zoom in a heartbeat right now, because that’s the way that you communicate. So how do you bring that message of change? And again, using that example, to someone that’s in a position of power? That’s always maybe done things one way? How do you convince that older generation to say, wait a minute, this could actually be better?
Kim Becking 13:54
Yeah. So So I always like to use an example of, I share with them a picture of a yellow ghost. Okay, so for those of you listening, a yellow ghost, what is that? And I asked them that question, and then I share that that is how I communicate with my teenagers. I have three teenagers, and it is Snapchat. So Snapchat is right as a social media tool. But I could send my teenagers a text and I don’t hear back for day, right? Unless they want what? Money, money and then their immediate response. But if I send them a Snapchat, it’s like snap magic. And they immediately respond. And so part of it is we have to learn to meet people where they are and right now right there’s a lot of talk about the great resignation. There’s a lot of a lot of challenges with staffing challenges and and unhappy employees and and part of it is we have to make the time to get to know people at a deeper level, and we have to meet them and connect with them where they are, you know. We’ve all heard of the golden rule, right? I mean, the golden rule is treat others the way you want to be treated. But we have to start thinking about the platinum rule. And the platinum rule is treat others the way they want to be treated. So you have to, to do that you have to get to know them. You have to understand where they’re coming from. And you can put every single person in a certain generation in one bucket, because everybody’s motivated by different things. Everybody wants different things. Now, we all typically have that common universal feeling of wanting to be valued, seen, heard, appreciated, and yes, loved. Right. Those are things we all want. But how do you get that you have to get to know people. And that’s, that’s where leaders right now, right? Because people like I don’t have time, I don’t have time to do that. I’m too busy. I’m too overwhelmed, I’m too stressed out, but you have to make the time.
Joel Goldberg 15:52
And it’s such an important point. Every one is different. There’s never there’s never been a one size fits all, although we’ve oftentimes operated that way. And, and look, whether it’s a product of the pandemic, or it’s just the, I don’t know, the workplace and the younger generation, I hate the whole younger generation thing, because there’s always been a younger generation, right? And there’s always been the older generation that says, well, back when we were, you know, to get off my lawn thoughts. But look, we are in a place right now, where the workforce has a voice, because they’re willing to pick up and move. For me growing up. You were supposed to stay in a job at least two years. I remember a discussion I had with with a really good friend that was working with me, we’d gone to college together, we’re both in the same TV station, and small starter market. And she she found another job that was better. Two months later, I’m like, Wow, you really need to wait. And I think back to that all the time now that what was I talking about? Why? You know, there was no, but right now people want to be taken care of. It doesn’t necessarily mean they want the biggest paycheck, they might not even care about the benefits, right? But they want to enjoy work. They want to find purpose and work. And I find myself saying, how did we miss the boat on that before? What a great opportunity to do something different nowadays. To me, at least, that’s the way I look at it, right?
Kim Becking 17:20
Instead of seeing work as right now this is an obligation that you have, or you need to stay with that employer, just because right and that longtime loyalty of the olden days, well, things are different now. And you also have the gig economy and people can can grow and can learn and can do things in in lots of different ways from that perspective. So so that’s the difference.
Joel Goldberg 17:45
Yeah, it’s it. I think it’s exciting. And it’s new. But there’s pushback, right? And you’ll see that in front of any audience that you speak to you go into any, any office, and you’re going to hear from somebody that says yeah, but it’s so much easier to do it this way. How do you beyond the the effective storytelling that you do. And I know that it storytelling is everything? How do you convince someone that’s set in their ways to open their minds a little bit and meet someone else where they’re at?
Kim Becking 18:18
Yeah. And so I really take them through my momentum mindset model, right. And the key to that is, is really making them understand. I call it the stop, shift and reframe method. So how many of us have said, that will never work? Or we’ve always done it that way, or we’ve already tried that right? Or coming at a place of judgment, and assumptions. And so we have to learn to start stop shifting and reframing our thoughts, right? The words we speak. Because we have a choice. I always talk about 1440 minutes every single day, right? And we have a choice as a leader as a person, how we use those, how we show up with our words, our thoughts, our actions and our attitude. So as a leader, you have to decide when you start thinking those things. How can you stop, shift and reframe? How can you say when someone else on your staff, or someone else comes to you and says, I have this great idea, instead of immediately shutting them down? How can you stop shift and reframe? And instead of saying, well, well, why say why not? Instead of thinking this will never work, say, Well, what if it does, right? Looking and shifting to possibility instead of judgment and assumptions, which we’re all guilty of, especially right now, shifting that to curiosity and positive intent. And so as leaders, I think, for many of us, and even even, you know, I talk to some of my CEOs about this like they’re like, but I need to have all the answers. No vulnerability right now. Is powerful. Being real with people saying, You know what, here are the changes that are happening. I don’t maybe like this change either. This is where we’re at. This is what I know, this is what I don’t know, like being honest, being open, being transparent with people, and your teams and your leaders in organizations and meeting people where they are, instead of having this highlight reel of everything’s perfect or I’m the boss, and you just need to do what I say, right? That’s my dad’s leadership style, right? Just Just do what I say. Now, as a parent, I want my kids to do that, too. Now, right? But but that doesn’t work in leadership. And so how do you continue to be more transparent, to be authentic, to really take that step back? Because the changes are gonna continue to come? And now your people have choices? Right? They’re gonna leave.
Joel Goldberg 20:54
Not only do they have choices, they expect choices.
Kim Becking 20:56
Joel Goldberg 20:58
So if you’re not going to give them choices. I was watching an interview the other day, I can’t remember where it was, I think it was on CBS Sunday Morning or something like that. And, and the guest was talking about people at this point. They want to be happy. Of course, we always did, right. But we thought well, but this is the way it’s supposed to be. So we have to find our happiness elsewhere. And instead of saying, I never thought about it this way, instead of saying, you did your job wrong, or you messed up. So you’re fired. It’s you did your job wrong? How can we figure out how to get you to do it right? Right. And that, that might sound to a leader, like you’re giving in? Or oh, you don’t have the power? Well, that’s not what this is about. This is about before we say you’re not right, figuring out why they’re not right, and figuring out if there’s a way to make them right.
Kim Becking 21:54
I call it right, instead of doing the Yes., but. I said, you know, we all got big butts, and we cannot lie, right? But what happens after the but like, if you’re a leader, and you say, you know, you did an amazing job on this part, but blah, blah, blah, right? You’re not gonna hear anything, they said on the front end of that you’re not gonna hear the good, you’re only gonna hear the bad. So let’s start saying yes and right. How do we shift that mindset to say, You did a great job. And here’s how you could improve this piece moving forward. Right? But we’re still saying you did a good job. So it’s, it’s the Yes And instead of the Yes But, right? It’s looking at what’s going right instead of what’s going wrong. And here’s the thing, we have the choice like that positive mindset, right, that momentum mindset, it’s up to each of us, as a leader to do that. And when you’re in a toxic environment, or where you’re in an organization where the the leaders not coming at it from that place, right, that spreads like wildfire. And then you have an entirely toxic organization. And so how can you during all this change, during instability, during uncertainty? How can you make sure I love what you said earlier. How can you make sure that everybody’s focused on that shared purpose? Right. And that why, And making sure that everyone feels a part of that, because everyone’s a leader, right from where they are, you don’t have to have that title. You know, we’re all leaders right from where we are, because it’s how we show up.
Joel Goldberg 23:25
I love it. It’s so true. I think it’s true in any profession. I really do. And I believe that those that embrace that type of thinking, that move forward that way will be ahead of the game. I think that there’s there’s no doubt about that. Before I get into my baseball theme questions I want to go back to you wrote the book, cancer survivor. How did that change just your energy and your perspective, because I know that when you get on stage, you bring it, you bring it in terms of energy in terms of positivity. I’m not saying if I didn’t know you, then that you weren’t energetic or positive back in your, your old days, you’re you’re recovering now.
Kim Becking 24:09
You just call me old, Joel.
Joel Goldberg 24:11
No, I am old.
Kim Becking 24:14
You know, it’s all good.
Joel Goldberg 24:16
All right. So I am slightly younger, but I always thought that I look older. So if you want to tell people that you’re younger, that’s fine. They’ll believe you. They won’t believe me. But I’m thinking about your perspective, when you go on stage now. I mean, you’ve you’ve, you’ve conquered one of the most awful things, and you have an opportunity to influence and inspire others to make people’s lives better. I don’t think I’m overdramatizing that, to know that when you start looking for purpose and why, you survived and not only is your life better, but you have that opportunity on any given day to make somebody else’s life better. And I’ve got to think that that really motivates you.
Kim Becking 24:57
Yeah, you know, and I think it’s a combination of things right, because originally I thought it was just the cancer. And then I went through a divorce right? High school sweetheart, left me for a very good friend, a neighbor, I was helping her with her divorce, giving her money, watching for children, right? They got married. Her name was Kim. Same as me. I had to rebrand my whole business, right? My life. And then I found a fell in love again, never thought that was possible married a widower with two kids. So we’re blending while mending, right? So and then aging parents who’ve had stuff lately, my husband who just got over cancer, right? I’ve had COVID several times because Joel has a pitch in for me and help out when I couldn’t make it to a speaking gig. My point is, we all have that stuff. We all have those ups and downs. And so for me, part of my why, because I keep sometimes asking, you know what, I got enough resilience stories, I don’t need any more. You know, it’s been a tough year for me this year. And, and it gets back to we’re all going to continue to have that hard and those challenges and that uncertainty and change no matter what. And so how do you continue to not just bounce back, but bounce forward. And so using all of my collective experiences from the business world, right, from my cancer from other things, because because there’s no such thing as work life balance, its blend, its integration, what affects us at home affects us at work, and vice versa. It’s using all those collective experiences to get on that stage, or to work with leaders and teams, because you know, I do consulting and executive coaching and things too, but but really look at how do we make you continue to show up as your best self, no matter what. And what does that look like for you. And so for me, I use my experiences and the storytelling as examples. But and I want to leave people with real tactical tools that they can actually utilize and implement. And that’s the important piece for me. Because I come at a place of service, you know, a lot of times right what we do, Joel, like a lot of people say that’s my biggest fear. You know, our National Speakers Association even has a shirt that says, you know, your biggest fear is how I make a living, right? From a speaking perspective. And but here’s the thing if people like, don’t you get nervous? Maybe in the years ago, right, decades ago, I used to get nervous. But now I come in a place of service. Come in a place of what do those that I’m speaking with, or working with? What do they need to hear? And if I focus on them, and I come at that place of service, that’s what it’s about. Yeah, that’s where the magic happens. And that’s where everything comes together.
Joel Goldberg 27:30
Yeah, no, it’s a great place to be. And there’s no reason to get nervous for that. No, we’re all wired, we’re all wired differently. I mean, for me, it’s just like, Well, why would I get nervous? I’ve done this enough times, but then it becomes this is pretty awesome.
Kim Becking 27:44
Joel Goldberg 27:45
I’ve got a chance today to impact somebody’s life.
Kim Becking 27:48
Joel Goldberg 27:50
And look, we all have that in us, by the way, too. You don’t have to get on stage to be able to do that. All right. Now, I’m just I don’t need to go motivational route for the audience here. But But I just, you know, I can relate to it all. So baseball themed questions. In this long career or careers that you? Yes, there we go. Biggest homerun that you’ve hit?
Kim Becking 28:13
I think the biggest home run for me has been something that I actually teach my audiences. And it’s not stopping because of fear, but moving because of purpose. And so throughout my career, right, so I left the big law firm, everyone thought I was crazy for leaving, right like nice, paycheck, steady, amazing, big firm. I left there to go work in public service at the city, right? Like my salary went way down. But I was giving and I was I was in this amazing role, right? So I had the courage to do that. That’s, that’s a home run, and then leaving the city to start my own Public Affairs and Communications company. And then that became very successful. Now I was a home run right, and then having the courage in 2018, I took my last big retainer client, so I could truly only focus on one business and go all in on my speaking and my leadership development work. And so that was right. And so it’s like a series of homeruns because it all was based on the premise of not stopping because of fear or what ifs, but moving because of my purpose. To be able to collectively use all those different experiences to be where I’m at today.
Joel Goldberg 29:27
That’s great stuff. I love it all. How about a swing and a miss?
Kim Becking 29:33
I’ve had dozens of those.
Joel Goldberg 29:34
Most of us have. I certainly have. What did you learn from it?
Kim Becking 29:38
Yeah, so you know, and I actually I actually made a list of all the ways I fail. And it’s like, you know, dozens and dozens of pages.
Joel Goldberg 29:46
You made that for me?
Kim Becking 29:47
Joel Goldberg 29:48
Did you make that for me?
Kim Becking 29:50
No, I make it because I, as part of my Momentum Mindset I talk about seeing failure in a different way.
Joel Goldberg 29:56
I’m just saying that the the assignment that assignment to, yeah, you just had to pick one.
Kim Becking 30:00
The one I picked was this right here and those who aren’t watching or aren’t watching, but are listening, you can’t see, but I’m holding up 55 rejection letters from publishers for my first book. And I could have stopped at 10 or 20, or 30, or 40, or even 50. But I didn’t stop because of the fear, I moved because of the purpose. And then out of that came, right our my first book, Nordies at Noon, with three other young women best seller, New York Times, People Magazine, all the morning talk shows, but more importantly, we were able to make that impact. And so I didn’t give up, I gritted up. And that’s what I talk about, right? That’s the importance of of those misses and learning from them. That’s when you grit up, don’t give up and bounce forward, not just back, but forward, right, that ball is going out of the ballpark stronger and better than before.
Joel Goldberg 30:58
That is why any of those negative moments those swings and misses don’t have to be negative because you can. That’s the way I’ve viewed COVID to. Full while saying that lives were lost lives were changed. I don’t even want to go down the rabbit hole right now. Mental Health, everything. But I think that we all have the ability to come out stronger, hopefully at least that’s the goal. And that’s, you know, where we’re trying to go at this point. Okay, final baseball theme question. Small ball, the little things that add up to the big results, what are those little things that may not show up by saying the baseball world may not show up in the box score may not show up in the stats, but but are really important to your success?
Kim Becking 31:43
Yeah, so for me two things. One, is, I got it wrong in my first business. Because I worked too much. I had a very successful, right, seven figure big business. But I worked too much. And this time around, right, I have built my business around the life that I want. And for many entrepreneurs, we get it backwards, right. And so we build, we build our life around the business. And and so for me, I’m very clear on my intentions, I’m very clear on my on my boundaries, so that I can make sure I still have a life as a part of of this, right, because we’re one person. So that’s the first. The second is consistent, intentional action, right? We can hope for all the things. But it has to be followed by action. And action is what creates momentum. And that’s what creates your action and results. So it’s daily consistent action. So for me that means right reaching out to my clients or my past clients or prospects every single day. It means getting in my customer relations, you know, my database, my CRM every single day. It means also having my morning coffee or doing doing my morning meditation and having those those habits that morning routine for me, that’s really important to start my day, right? So for you, what is that for you. And that has really for me that those small balls, those small things every single day that have that cumulative effect, to then allow you to continue that that course to really build momentum and knock it out of the park.
Joel Goldberg 33:30
You are speaking my language. And I will tell you that my small ball game is so much better out of baseball season than in baseball season. The small ball game during baseball season is as much about survival and staying healthy and keeping that energy going. And so that’s an important point actually too, is that that those small ball habits that we all have can change based on what’s going on in our lives and then some of them have to stay the same no matter what.
Kim Becking 33:54
Right, right, like I talked about the power of the pause right? Pausing is intentional action as well. And there are times where we need to also do that to boost our resilience during during your busy season.
Joel Goldberg 34:06
That’s right. If you want more information about Kim, I’ve got a great place for you to go to find it. Rally simple. Her website: Kimbecking.com That’s it. Simple. Kimbecking.com You can learn all about her speaking, you can see her in action, you can learn about some of her different programs, her coaching, the virtual, her story, all the clients that she has worked with and and also don’t forget about her book, which I’m going to ask about in the bonus portion of this interview. So I hope that if anybody wants more you’ll come over, join us for for bonus questions as we Round the Bases on YouTube. Kim this has been great, love the conversation and I know that there is more to come, at least on a personal level with with you and I because this is just fun stuff at least for me. So I’ve really enjoyed it and I hope I don’t have to ever fill in for you again as much as I enjoyed it. No more COVID cancellations.
Kim Becking 34:59
Joel Goldberg 34:59
And I also hope I don’t have to return the favor but if I do I know where to go.
Kim Becking 35:04
I got you. Thanks, Joel. Go Royals.
Joel Goldberg 35:06
Welcome in a round of the bases extra innings for final questions with Kim. Back in Kim, let’s start with this the book, which I feel like there’s more to it than just the title but my wife likes naughties at noon or noughties at any time of the day. If I’m being honest, I don’t mind that either. Yeah. Tell me about that book and how it really impacted your life.
Kim Becking 35:28
Yeah. So you know, 20 years ago, I was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 30. And there weren’t a lot of resources for young women and cancer at the time. So there were four of us who started meeting at Nordstroms Cafe as our own support group, and decided we were going to write a book, we didn’t know anything about it, right. And out of that came a book called noughties at noon. And, you know, for me, and here’s the interesting part, because, you know, and that was my first book I’ve had, I’ve had books since then and working on some, but I’m one of the co authors who was the reason I found my mom, she was diagnosed at 24. She passed away at 29. And she passed away about halfway through writing the book. So her family, we interviewed her, and then her family helped us finish the book. We originally had an agent in New York, that was walking us through the traditional publishing process. And this was before Amazon and all the easy ways now, right? This was years ago. And we promised Patty, our friend that we would get it out and she’d passed away, and it was taking too long. So we fired her agent. We hired a local company in Kansas City to walk us through the self publishing process. And we initially self published, we sold like 30,000 copies, like it was crazy, because we had media contacts, and then, you know, people are contacting us. And then it became overwhelming because we had a garage and we had a storage unit and our husbands were the delivery guy was a lot. So we shot for publishing houses that would pick up self published authors. And then we we got picked up and then it it blew up. You know, Nordstrom sponsored us, it was New York Times People Magazine, morning talk shows. And, you know, more importantly, out of all that the interesting thing is, you know, originally it was it was about a book about for young women going through breast cancer and reminding people, right that that young woman can and do get breast cancer because we were being dismissed by our doctors. But then it became about something bigger, it became about a story about hope and a story about friendship and all the different ways that it could impact other people. And so that was that was the focus. And you know, and I still, it’s funny. So when I went through my divorce, or when I’ve been through other challenges in my life, or you know, business challenges, whatever, I sometimes will go back and reread certain parts of the book. And, you know, maybe it’s not my words, maybe it’s Patty or jammas section or, you know, something that someone said, and, you know, and that’s that’s the impact. And, you know, I think writing a book just for writing a book isn’t isn’t a thing. I mean, that’s ego, it’s really what impact can this make? And how can this help others?
Joel Goldberg 38:03
That’s life changing for, for you and for a lot of people, which is a beautiful thing. Second question, we’ll go a little bit more lighthearted I saw in the fun facts section of our research that you love Girl Scout cookies and Thin Mints so much that you ate a lot of boxes during the pet but there’s no being ashamed of that. Because just about everybody did something like that. Yeah, by the way, I would recommend that whenever the Girl Scout Cookies come out if you love them mints, you’re going to eat a lot of sleeves of Thin Mints. Yeah, so tell me about that. And the important question Do you freeze them or no?
Kim Becking 38:39
Oh yeah, frozen frozen are the best. I full transparency a 22 boxes in two years. And I would write my name and big Sharpie on them and say Kim’s cookies, so my teenagers would not eat them. And I would get very mad if they did. Yes. You know, I probably gained a little weight because of it. But But I was supporting young female entrepreneurs. So that’s an I was a Girl Scout myself. Right and so like it’s it’s all a part of that process. So but I did learn during the pandemic, right, I’m still addicted to the denmat Girl Scout.
Joel Goldberg 39:14
So good. I can be on any type of you know, disciplined eating or not. But if they put the what’s now called the caramel delights, the Samoas I can eat a full box of those in one sitting. I tried to just leave it to like a quarter half anyway. Yeah, and those are good frozen or not. And then the Thin Mints my wife loves those. And I’m not saying I don’t either. Okay. Yeah, Girl Scout season always gets me there’s no getting around that. I like it just supporting, supporting the economy supporting the kids. It’s all about the kids all about the kids. It’s all about the kids up. Third question. I saw that you had been on Air Force One. Tell me about that.
Kim Becking 39:56
Yeah, so I was actually when Emanuel Cleaver was Mayor Are and so anytime, you know, whether it was senators, whether it was presidents, whether it was ambassadors, who, you know, stars would come to town, we would help be the advanced people. So, when Bill Clinton was President, we we got to go, we actually took him some gates barbecue. And they, they let us kind of get a glimpse of that. And we got to meet, you know, Clinton as well as at the earlier event that the president at the time. So it’s just some amazing experiences. And it’s funny now how things have changed, because at that time they used to come, they might still do this. And they’d have to lay their own telephone lines. And this was when they had caller ID for those that don’t know what caller ID is used to have a little machine that would tell you who called so then you could screen your calls and decide if you were answering or not. And so the caller ID I had to get approved, you know, security clearance and all that. But the caller ID that came up said the White House. So I have that picture. And I have my little secret service pin and got to be on Air Force One it was it was awesome. Like some of the just amazing, you know, random things that we’ve all we all get to experience in our lives.
Joel Goldberg 41:03
That’s fun stuff. Okay, last thing you have been and you highlighted this on the audio version of the podcast, I would encourage everybody to go back, check that out wherever you get your podcasts, Apple, Spotify, or wherever it might be. But you talked about all the ups and the downs, not just the cancer diagnosis and beating cancer of being a breast cancer survivor, but divorce, getting remarried and all that. How have you done all of that your life today is not anything you could have envisioned years ago, right? I mean, you know, you’re married highschool sweetheart, who’s now married to a good friend of yours, and you found the new love of your life. And he couldn’t have envisioned this either, because his wife passed away. And yet, it’s all worked out beautifully, too. I’m just curious, your perspective on it.
Kim Becking 41:50
Yeah, you know, and it I think it’s a it’s a reminder and a lesson for all of us that we’re all going to have those hard in those challenges. And, and, and a part of it is letting go right I talk a lot about resigning as general manager of the universe, you’re letting go of what you thought your life would be, and and instead stop chipping and reframing and focusing on what it is or what it can be. Right. And I think sometimes we get so mired down in the regrets, or well, I thought things would be different, or I want things to be different. So part of that is that accepting what is and grieving and feeling all the feelings and doing everything you need to do to heal. But then recognizing and realizing that you have the power to then create what’s next. And and I think for so many of us, and I work with a lot of my or my companies and organizations that I work with, they struggle with this too, right? Because they’re dealing with all these changes. Or my parents, right, I’m in the middle of the sandwich with aging parents and teenagers. And so I think we all have our own stuff. And and part of it is learning to let go of all the things that we’re holding tight to right, because how many of us are walking around holding our fists? When when if we live with our hands up, right? We’re all on the roller coaster. If we live with our hands up, that feels a lot better. So how do you start letting go of all the things that are weighing you down, or holding you back or keeping you stuck and shifting so you can let go and truly then build that momentum of the life that and business and and work that you were meant to do.
Joel Goldberg 43:34
So important and truly applies to everyone those words or something close to them are right there on the website too. It says unexpected changes stuff in quotes because it can mean whatever you want. whatever word you want stuff, hitting the fan. I say it all the time, including the biggest name athletes, everybody has stuff, not just because we want to put them on a pedestal they’re a celebrity, they’re this they’re a CEO, they’re a superstar athlete doesn’t mean that they aren’t going home to someone that is battling cancer or a sick child, divorce marital, whatever it is. Everybody has got stuff and I think that when we understand that enables us to meet them where they’re at, which is what you talked about in the audio version again to let people know you can learn more about Kim on her website, Kim backing.com. We’ve got it all in the show notes. Kim, enjoy the audio version, enjoy the YouTube and around in the bases. Really appreciate you and all the work you’re doing. Thanks so much.
Kim Becking 44:33
Absolutely. Thank you all