Published on:

16th Mar 2023

Brandon Siler & Keri Laine Interview

Spreading Leadership From The Football Field To Real-World Scenarios:

Keri Laine Interviews Brandon Siler, Founder of Legacy Pro Sports, and former NFL player.

BRANDON SILER'S story is one of hard work, dedication, and perseverance. He has faced many challenges in his life but has always managed to come out on top. His journey is sure to inspire and motivate anyone looking to understand mental health awareness, leadership, and entrepreneurship.

In this episode of InRoads hosted by Keri Laine, Siler discusses the importance of cultivating leadership skills.

As an accomplished NFL football player turned entrepreneur, Siler knows firsthand what it takes to lead a team to success. In this conversation, he shares his insights on how to develop the necessary skills to become an effective leader, including the importance of communication, accountability, and self-awareness.

Siler shares his personal journey on mental health and how he has found the courage to speak out and seek help.

He highlights the importance of having a support system and encourages others to prioritize their own mental health and well-being.

Siler will be featured in a new Netflix movie that explores the concept of “The Definition of a Leader.” The movie delves deep into the characteristics and traits that make up an effective leader, and how these qualities can be cultivated in individuals.

Following the release of the movie, he will be launching a new book and course titled “The Definition of a Leader.” This comprehensive course and book are designed to help individuals become effective leaders and take charge of their careers.








Website: https://kerilaine.com










Website: https://www.legacyprosports.us

Keri Laine:

Mr. Siler.

Brandon Siler:


Keri Laine:

Welcome to the INRoads Podcast.

Brandon Siler:

All right. Thanks for having me.

Keri Laine:

Thank you for being here. So, what would I call you? If it wasn't Mr. Siler?

Brandon Siler:

A lot of people call me B-Si or King Kong.

Keri Laine:

Where’s King Kong come from?

Brandon Siler:

Well, my granddaddy was a boxer. He fought Muhammad Ali. Right. Probably the athlete that I

look up to the both Muhammad Ali and his nickname was Gorilla. So his essence, King Kong.

Keri Laine:

Okay. Okay, King Kong. So, tell me about your five year old self. If you were driving in a car with

your five year old self, and you were to look behind you, and you were to see a little five year old

you looking right back. What would your five year old self say he was most surprised by in your

life and how things have turned out for you.

Brandon Siler:

I'm different, right? I'm reengineered a different way. My five year old self probably wouldn't be

surprised about any, my five year old self was different. I always was a little bit different. Right? I

was raised in the projects in Vine Hills. But everybody around me always knew there was

something different about me, right.

Keri Laine:

So, describe different.

Brandon Siler:

I was the kid that, you know, even though I could beat somebody up and tackle them on football

field, and excel in basketball, and baseball, I had a 4.2 GPA, you know, and everybody in the

community could tell you about my heart. So, I was always different. You know, even when there

was something bad happening the hood kids will always say B-Si, I need you to get out of here.

Right? So it was always that something special that my five year old self had that people seeing

a long time ago. So I think that I'm right on path of what that five year old says,

Keri Laine:

Do you think that growing up, you always knew that and had that sense of security and self


Brandon Siler:

I think the I always expected it. My mom was strong, a strong woman in my life. And she

discipline me in a way like no other. In ways that, you know, now today, probably,

Keri Laine:

We don't talk about that.

Brandon Siler:

Wouldn’t be that great, right. But those were the things and she installed that kind of discipline in

me when I was young, right? Didn't let me partake in a lot of the things that people around me

were doing. So, it made me understand that there was something different and special about


Keri Laine:

And that's something that you've owned, and going through what you have been through, you

had to have kind of probably had to harness that as almost one of your superpowers, I imagine

and own it. And it probably helped propel you in a lot of ways, I guess.

Brandon Siler:

Yeah for sure. I mean, I there's a lot of people that look at everything that I'm doing. And they

always ask like, how, how are you doing so much? How are you still, you know, being super

and, but still taking care of:

businesses at one time. Right. And still going to school. I got a year left, I get my Doctorate in

Business.I got went back to the University of Florida. And I got my degree, right because I left

early. Got my degree. Then I went, got my MBA in business, got two degrees from MIT business

certificates, one from Harvard, one from Wharton Business School, one from Yale. So I'm

always just, I'm chasing learning. Yeah, I want my brain to continually grow and learn. And I put

people around me that when I don't know what's best they do when I'm bad at something I put

somebody around me that’s good at it. You know, so yeah, that's how it works.

Keri Laine:

Tell me. So, you—talk me through your career journey and how you got to be where you are,

where you have all these degrees and run all these businesses?

Brandon Siler:

Well, I was, I chose the University of Florida, went down to SEC Freshman Player of the Year,

as soon as I got on campus, I told my advisor to put my schedule and load my schedule up. So,

I graduated in three years, because I knew that I wanted to change the financial dynamic of my

family. And any opportunity, I was gonna go to the NFL. So I said three years getting that

degree. So I would have gotten it in three years, except I didn't realize that you only spent two

and a half years on campus. So then you have to go train for the combine. That's why I had to

go back and get my degree. So I went to Florida, I was a cabinet of national championship team

and ‘06 where we have a Netflix documentary that's coming out where it goes over that period

of years where Tim Tebow was following behind me trying to become the best leader that he

can be and it worked. Right. So we won a national championship then I I get upset in the in the

draft supposed to get drafted in the first round, first and second round, and I get drafted in

seventh. I like to say that I lost about $15 million that day. Right?

Keri Laine:

We’re you getting nervous in that moment waiting for.

Brandon Siler:

Of course, like did my agent not put my name in there?

Keri Laine:

One or two like right there,

Brandon Siler:

What, why is it nobody calling my name right? So, so it's a different experience being a seventh

round draft pick when you get drafted in the NFL, right? You're in the background, I didn't get to

play, you know, got labeled as a special team. So, never really achieved what I wanted to those

first few years because I was barely making the team you know, because of where I got drafted.

And then in my fourth year, my third or fourth year I actually propelled to the top and played

linebacker and was proving myself and in my fifth year after my four years in my first contract, I

was got paid was my big payday come in, and then the lockout happens the NFL lockout. So

NFL lockout happens fifth year, I have to sign for one year to Kansas City. All right, so I'm

playing great best save my life. I'll play this one year and prove myself. Last practice of the last

play before I first game, tear my Achilles. Out for the season. So, my fifth year, I’m out for the

season. My sixth year I come back. Javon Beltre, shoots himself in the head. At the facility in

Kansas City, I was the closest person to him on the team, we played the same. We're the only

two people on the team that played linebacker. And when he did that, I was actually calling his

cell phone as I was pulling into the facility, and heard the shot then look down and see. So, that

was very traumatic. And as a matter of fact, that was on a Saturday, we played on Sunday, and

everywhere, his name was they scratched out his name, and wrote my name. So, after that, my

love for the game left. And I had to find a new identity. And that's what's tough for a lot of

people. And in my case, I walked away from the game, I never been cut, right? So, I walked

away, which is a blessing in a sort of way, right? When I walked away from the game, I walked

away, I made that decision. Most people don't, right is 98% of guys they don't make that

decision. The game is done with them. And they have to come to that realization. When I left. I

went back to UF went and got my degree. And then I went and talked in front of the UF alumni

boosters, whatnot. And I told him, I look, I'm not looking for a job, I'm not gonna go cut

anybody's lawn. Right? I said, but I am looking for a career. So if you need somebody that's

bright, somebody that's a leader, somebody that has new ideas and new brilliance that they can

put into a company that needs that shake up, yeah, I'm your man. And I must have been very

persuasive in the talk. Because everybody bid on me like Shark Tank, or whatever. And I landed

on David and Bobby who played 10 years before me, he was at CEMEX, and he recruited me

on to manage the readymix department at CEMEX. So, we had, I took the apartment sector,

and we were doing 5% of apartment complexes at the time, to two and a half years later, when I

left, we were doing two and a half, 65% of all apartment complexes, so safe to say, kind of

excelled in that role. And then I dealt with my own mental health issues. I had a lot of guys that

were coming to me that was dealing with this same sort of thing. They couldn't get these

disabilities from the NFL. And I started digging into why, right, and the more that I dug, the more

and more I got upset, the more and more I saw why they couldn't get through it. And I had about

six of my buddies that came to me and just asked for my help, like, come ask smart guy. And I

dug I figured it out. And I got him to the finish line. And he brought me so much satisfaction, so

much joy that I was dealing with my mental health issues. And it got me out of that rut, like

seeing that I could help other people in that way. And that's when the light bulb went off. That's

when I started saying, oh shit, this makes me feel as good as that made me feel back in the day,

if not better, right? So, then there's the school, I'm going back, I want to learn more how to run a

business, how to do this, how to do that, and then continually helping these guys to now five

n that space. So I have about:

get them disabilities rather than a lot of duty which was orthopedic disability and neurocognitive

when I told them permanent disability. I helped guys get on the bridge that gets them to the

money that is out there for him. It's a statute of limitations on a lot of this stuff. And if you if you

fail it is yes it is. It is complex.

Keri Laine:

Well and that's part of where I'm sure your education and dealing with the dynamics, your work

capability capacity, and then the ability to connect the dots seem to serve in your favorite now,

the beginning of your story. It seems like you had some derailleurs some roadblocks. How are

you sound positive about them high service or they didn't feel like it at the time? How did you

view them when you were waiting to be picked or when you got locked up?

Brandon Siler:

Traumatizing right. This is something that you spend your whole life trying to get to. Today, I

might seem like I'm confident about it, right. But at the time, I wasn't. So I'm, I've committed

suicide twice. Right? Not that good at it, as you can see here, right? That's, that's one thing

that's good to fail. Right? So I've committed suicide twice and dealt with my own mental health

issues, right. So now on sort of, you know, fast forward a few years into helping these players

out, a lot of these guys were dealing with mental health issues, right. And a lot of these guys

deal with anxiety and depression and the most in the highest form from a rejection of something

that you wanted to do your whole life. So there was a rehab facility that only treated athletes,

right. And I own this rehab facility. But how I discovered is I sent one guy out to this rehab facility

that was having a lot of issues. And he came back, he was like, man, that was life changing, like

I loved it. So immediately, I jumped on a plane, went out there with my business partner, and I

said, Guys need this, right. And I've helped her develop this facility up to the fact that she was

getting older, and she wanted to, you know, shut everything down and was done. And I basically

said, there's no way that we can do that. Like, if this goes away, then all of these players that

we're treating all of these players that we're saving, that goes away for them, right. So, me and

my business partner, we got together, and I purchased the facility. And now it's Pure Recovery

California. And we treat guys for anxiety, depression, substance abuse, TBI, neurocognitive

issues. So guys go out there, and we have a 95% success rate. Because out in our facility, there

are a lot of rehab facilities around the country, right. But it's unique. When it comes to sports and

playing sports on a high level, it's unique to the things that you go through from a mental

capacity. So, it's hard for you to get healing, unless you're around a lot of people that are dealing

with the same things that you're dealing with, right. So when I walk into a rehab facility, and

there's Joe Blow, you know, that comes in here, and he's telling his story. And you just don't feel

it, you can relate to it can't relate, you can't get along, you still are trying to still don't. Exactly. So

when guys go to our facility, because it is all athletes, you are getting that experience. So you're

going through, these guys have been through the same thing that you've been through now,

they might be at a different place in your journey, there might be somebody further along, that

you can pull from there might be somebody not as far along, they can pull from you. Yeah, right.

And getting together with them. It's like having that locker room experience. Again, you have

that brotherhood again, and we have an alumni program where we can stay in touch, and we

hold each other accountable, where we check up on each other, and we build that camaraderie

and have that brotherhood that we had back in the day. So that is the biggest difference that our

rehab facility. And that's why it works so well with our guys.

Keri Laine:

And I think that you're onto something there. Because that sense of identification and

connectivity in that community. Having the like minded experiences that I imagined, especially

as an athlete, there are certain sensory things that you will go through the intensity level, right,

the identification of yourself reflected from others, for so many others. There's a lot of pressure

and expectation there and only so few people, I imagine would understand what that feels like.

So if you were to summarize, what does it feel like to be a professional athlete in that way, and

what makes that community so uniquely able to serve each other?

Brandon Siler:

I think that there's a lot of things that comes with being a professional athlete, right? One of the

biggest is financially, right, like everybody's gonna pull on you. Most guys that make it into the

NFL, or make it in professional sports don't come from money, right? So they have a lot of these

financial issues that they have to deal with, which then makes the relationships different, right?

Money doesn't change you it changes everybody around. Right? It changes the way they treat

you the way they look at you the way they think about you. So that happens and the expectation

is high when you're playing at that high, right when when it's your job to perform in that way.

Athletically, it's tough, and that's the reason why we're taking our program and we've now put

implementing it on college campuses. Right? So we're implementing our program on college

campuses, because that's where it really starts right in college. And everybody is understood

that mental health is one of the biggest issues in sports right now. Everybody understands that.

But even my facility which reading guys once they have, once somebody has made a valid point

and it is something going on there is something there. But most guys that are dealing with this

stuff, they don't know that they're dealing with it at the time, right? They think that it's you or it's

them or is some something else that's making them do that. So if you don't know that you're

dealing with it, then how can you resolve it? So I say we start by doing a preventative work on

college campuses, right. Student athletes that have mental health education and preventative

work implemented into, into their curriculum. Yeah, right. So have you implemented in our

curriculum, how we do it is basically we give that we basically make all student athletes basically

have this mental health work so that even if you don't notice something that's going on with you,

you discover it through this through his treatment through this curriculum. Or if you have

something going on with you, we address it. And then now, you know, you know, I don't know

how many guys that I've played with in college, they have come in and they're the number one

player in the country or their high ranked in the country. And they get into it. And the coaches

are yelling at them and got this pressure and they cower, and they go to the back of the line,

and they're yelled at and they never become the player that they ultimately could be able to. We

ultimately recruited them as and they knew that they could become because nobody's there

because nobody can babysit that kid. Right? That you, you curse that and he moves to the

back, and he just cowards and he's never performing well, right. Yeah, he's a shell of himself.

So if you give that kid mental health work, if you if that kid understands that, that coach is yelling

at him, but not because he doesn't like him, right, not because he's, you're not good enough,

he's trying to get some better out of you. Yeah, just understanding that kind of stuff. From an

athletic standpoint, when it comes to mental health makes a world of difference, right? It makes

a world of difference in that individual that who that individual turns to and becomes, we just

recently had a one of our former players that you have committed suicide, right. And I think

doing that kind of work prevents that kind of thing. You know, what I'm saying.

Keri Laine:

The brilliance of the community, the and, the Pure group that you're connecting, they make to

your point may not know. And so when you have somebody that either has experienced it, and

you've provided the dialogue and the safe space, to be able to acknowledge it to be able to

recognize the signs or like you're saying, started early training, what the signs may be, that can

be recognized in one another far faster, when you put the like minded people and like

experienced people together. And so that creating that network is brilliant for you to do that.

Brandon Siler:

Yeah, I think my experiences and the things that I've done, and the things that I've seen is what

makes this relevant for players that are going through it right, I've played the highest level, I've

won the rings, right? I got national championship rings I played in every game except the Super

Bowl, but I also got drafted with Paul Oliver that committed suicide. Right. I also was good

friends, a junior, say all week made a suicide. Shane Olivier was my guard. And in San Diego

committed suicide, I just told you about Jeevan Beltre, who was the closest with that committed

suicide. Vincent Jackson I played with in San Diego committed suicide two weeks before going

to our facility. So that is the kind of stuff that is like out, like, you can prevent things like that from

happening, basically, by having this treatment in place. And you know, everybody wins when

you treat mental health, and you're preventative about mental health, like let's stop being


Keri Laine:

Absolutely, I've seen since COVID, there's a lot of talk in the corporate world or business

enterprise world where the mental health of an employee or a leader, the pressures on the

business dynamics are changing. People are their identity based on what they used to go into

work to do to be and be every day, it's all changed. And people are that either had mental health

issues, or now working remotely. So it's being exacerbated because they don't have the

distraction, they're not being pulled out of their home. They're not they didn't have access to

certain, you know, HR people or other therapists that might be able to help them through it. And

so I think that what I'm seeing is much like you're talking about, it's a swell that COVID has

revealed, at least from the business standpoint, we have Keri Laine executive solutions,

specifically somebody on our team and the executive development area that focuses on mental

whole body health, well being from food to the mind, to the soul, all of that, because it's so

important. And I think when you identify your peer group, that's an accelerator for helping save

more lives. But I also think that it goes back to give you your purpose, and let's go back to when

you lost your purpose twice. When you think back to you then what kinds of things were you

feeling and thinking that led you to try.

Brandon Siler:

To try to commit suicide, you know, when you feel like you've done things the right way. When

you feel like you've done things the way that they're supposed to be done, and continually over

and over and over. You continue to get the short end of the stick. Right? I had guys that I grew

up with that. Couldn't get recruited to the University of Florida couldn't play that high level of

football that got drafted before me. I got teammates I got drafted before me that I knew wasn't

nowhere near as important to me. Right. It makes you feel like no matter what you do, And no

matter what you do, you're never gonna be enough. It's never gonna be good enough. It's not

gonna be that way. And I'm gonna tell you, one of the biggest things surrounding this that I

wasn't, I wasn't based in faith, right? So I didn't have God lead me down every path that I went,

right. So, because of that, when you do everything that you can do, and you have nothing else

to hold on to, then it's like, well, you're not enough. So what's the use of living? So that's kind of

the way that my mindset happened back then, since then I find, I found Christ, I found God. And

based in my beliefs of God, I'm not a religious person, but I'm very, very spiritual. And I have a

connection with God, I have a, I have a relationship with God. And I think that helps to that

makes a world of difference. Having something else that you can hold on to that when you have

done everything that you can do. Yeah, you can look to to say, I already know though, you don't

matter that I didn't do enough, because I know that you got it.

Keri Laine:

And it's a bit there's a bigger purpose if there's an outside of yourself, and a connection that

pulls you through to other parts of your life so that you can make the dots that you made, for

example, the word that you use that I love that is so rarely used, but it's what makes it so pure is

you said joy. You didn't say happy, right? People try to be happy all the time. Like what is

happiness? I don't know. But joy is a level that I think most people, I think they miss aiming for

joy, and they aim for happiness. And happiness can be filled with a lot of superficial things, it can

be filled with what your people think of you, it can be filled with other people's expectations

you're trying to meet. But when you have joy that comes from an authentic place in yourself, that

radiates differently. And when you have that light, that's when you can take your light and shine

it to others. And it's completely fascinating that you use that word how how do you describe

success and joy as they correlate together?

Brandon Siler:

As it goes to joy? I think happiness is something that somebody else can bring you right? Joy is

from within. Right? Joy is something that you get from yourself, right? Happiness, you can get

like the superficial things from outside, right? Joy is inside. Like, I get joy, knowing that I'm doing

what my purpose is here on Earth.

Keri Laine:

You can see it. Your eyes light up and you start smiling like you are naturally just breathing.

Brandon Siler:

So, I get joy when when I know that I'm saving lives when I know that I'm helping people. And

I'm changing the dynamic and the trajectory of where they're going in the world and in life. That

brings me joy. Right. Nothing else can do that. That's not an outside thing that can bring that

now. I still like being happy. Right has to do like my, but joy is what it's all about. Right? That's

from within. So that's that's pretty much the difference on that.

Keri Laine:

You mentioned earlier about how money changes people. And I imagine that brings somewhat

pressure, but it also makes you question who's in your life that's genuine and what their purpose

and intention might be, right?

Brandon Siler:

That's always, that's always I remember I told my wife like, we have friends or whatnot. I said, I

said, it's easy being your friend. I say it's easy. being your friend is easy being my friend. Yeah.

Right. Because you go to his place you go to that place, you have access to that person, right. I

was playing. I was playing pickleball at Jamie Foxx house. Right. I was also playing the next day

playing Pickleball was at Brian Grazer house, right? And they met with Larry David for dinner.

Right? It's easy being my friend. Right? It's like having a connection to access to people. Right?

And having us as financially stable. Right. So when you want to do things, and we pay for

different things, so it's easy, being free. And what's what's hard, is to understand that it's not

your job to make a financial difference in everybody else's life. Even if they've been vital to you

get into where you are. Right? What was hard for me was understanding that people are gonna

be alright without me. You know, people will be living a year from the day if I tell him no. Yeah.

And they'll still be rolling. They'll still somehow I've made it happen. Yeah, right. But what I can't

do is my, it’s God, my wife, and my kids in that order, right? And if I'm not taking care of those

things, those are gonna be the things that I take care of first. Once those things are done, then I

can open my heart and do things when I feel like doing it. I think when I started telling everybody

no consistently, is when I started getting the real people. Right.

Keri Laine:

That’s what I was gonna ask so how do you know if you filter in or out?

Brandon Siler:

Just tell everybody no. You tell them no. Can you help? Yes, but no. Right? Be comfortable with

that. Feel good about that. Right? Feel good about telling people? No because now they're

gonna show you who they really are. Right? Like, who are you really to me, if I'm not that

financial person, if I'm not funding you this and funding you that then who are you, if we're still

good friends, and we're still cool, therefore, cool, that's the person that I want to be around me

because we, I've had so many people that I've looked out for, and I've done things for my whole

life and felt such obligation to them to turn out that this snakes in the grass, right, that they're

doing things behind your back, and they're talking about you in ways that like, you're like, Wait,

that person said this? So, you can't get satisfaction out of that, I think what athletes have to

learn, and what people have to learn that a successful period is that saying no consistently is

gonna get you, the people around you that you really need,

Keri Laine:

That are gonna be willing and want to work there. And as you're talking, I'm imagining putting

myself in your shoes and these various scenarios. So you're trying to figure out where you

belong, what team you belong to, you're trying to figure out what rank you have, you know, draft

pick order, and all that, that does have something to do to validate or disvalidate your identity,

and your, your understanding and belief of yourself, then you go out of this and you have this

friendship circle, or maybe even the Friendship Circle during but you have to filter out and

understand trying to figure out who you are trying to figure out where you belong, where you fit,

then you have this society in this friend network where you're trying to figure out okay, what do

they see in me? And what do they want me for? And there's always this disconnect or

dissonance in that, who am I? And then if I know who I am, do they see me for me? And then

are they here for me? So you've had to go through many layers of getting to the inside core and

heart of who you are, and then you've had to own it. And then you've had to filter? Yeah,

because of it? That's, that's a lot.

Brandon Siler:

Yeah, it is a lot. And it's one of the toughest things that all successful people have to learn in

order to achieve, you know, true joy. Right, you have to understand that, you know, you're gonna

go through that process, you're gonna go through that you're not gonna get it right all the time.

Right? I explained in my book, basically, that I have two circles, right? Somebody asked me like,

who's in your circle? Well, I got two circles, right? Because you can't say no new friends. Right?

That makes no sense, right? Because if you don't have new friends, then you're not inviting

people continually to help you grow, right? I meet different people all the time, that have different

insight, the different things that where I come from, and the people that I grew up around, don't

have, that is a circle that is continually growing, that's my outside circle, right, as lot of people

that continually come in that leave out of that circle, depending on where I'm at in my life. And

then there's an inside circle, those are the people that understand how I work, why I make my

decisions, how I do things, why I do things, what my order is in life, and what that means to me,

that circle pretty much stays the same.

Keri Laine:

They're the ones that you know, are leaning on you for the right reasons, but they're also the

ones that you can lean on.

Brandon Siler:

Right? I can lean on. Exactly. So in those in those times that I can lean on I can I can pretty

much tell you, you know, that circle of people, and it's been the same forever, there are some

people that I thought was in it that had to get out. Yep. But for the most part, the people that are

in there, they've been in there, and they're gonna stay in there. And you do have to have that

second circle. That's the circle of growth. Yeah, you know, not saying that people in your inner

circle can help you grow. It is just having more people around you that you haven't had around

you that's going to help you to grow and understand to see things in a different way.

Keri Laine:

So through the Netflix series, and then through your book, tell me what you're hoping inspires

the culture and community, whether you're an athlete or whether you are a corporate executive,

that is experiencing any kind of mental health or any kind of issues that they are looking to you

and to what you have to say your message, your experience. What are you hoping that it

inspires and others?

Brandon Siler:

Well, I think the Netflix documentary will just be a cool ass story. Right? It was it was our glory

years. And I was the leader of that team. And the way that I did things in the way that I demand

that things out others around me and brought people along and got the highest level of

performance, or things that I did, right. And that's a lot of that is why we prepare to the top right.

Keri Laine:

But let me let me your I want you to answer that. But really quick touch on the point. You can

have the best players or you could be the best player. But what I'm hearing and what it sounds

like is part of your success and how you got to the top was how you organize, arrange the team

to be aligned, going for the same vision and working together. Yeah, that was the secret sauce.

Brandon Siler:

Yeah. See, I don't think that I was the best player on the team at any point in time. But I think

that I was the most important player on the team at every point in time. I think so because of the

leadership right? For instance, there's a lot of different, when you come into a team and when

urban came in, there was a lot of different subgroups out there, right? There's the thugs over

here, and the nerds and the walk ons and, and the high class pretty boys and all of that the

country boys, right? So you have all these subgroups. So when you have all these subgroups,

you can't really become one, strong family because you got all these little subgroups and what

they liked to do. I was that individual that could jump in every subgroup I stayed after late with

the nerds and study, I went frog gigging with the catcher. That's right. I was from where did

those was from, so we could listen to the same music and understand the same things. So I

could get around to every one, and understand what made their heartbeat? What made them

go, right? What motivated them? Why were they doing this? What was the reasons? What were

they trying to achieve? And then I was able to utilize all of that, to get the best performance out

of each one of them, and then portray that down into the people that looked up to them and

follow them. Yeah. So in essence, we all became one big family. By the time we left the

University of Florida, when we went to the club 100 cats going, you know, when I threw a party,

it was mandatory for our whole team to beat it. So that was the sort of thing that you're going to

see in that documentary that is like, off the chain where everybody's gotta love it, gotta love to

see, and you get that inside light into it. Now, the leadership portion to be seen in that and

everybody I get to see how big that was. You'll have Tim Tebow, you know, he tells about, he

wanted to be like me, you wanted to do the things that I was doing and learn from me, right? I

would, if I stayed after the lift weights, he stayed after with me. Right. If I jumped into the cold

tub, you jumped into the cold tub, right. And he did those things, because he ultimately wanted

to learn what it was about me that made me a great leader. Yeah, right, and I think it is the

ability, just like I said, to be able to relate with everybody understand what makes them go, and

then be able to pull the best out of every individual so that we can overall be the best team that

we can be.

Keri Laine:

That's what's amazing to me is that you can have that influence, and you can connect the dots,

but you created a culture. And you created a synergy where once they knew each other, you

could have whatever game plan you want, you could have whatever plays you want, but once

they knew each other, and through your initiatives, to inspire them to be more connected, they

operated as a unit to be able to work those plays, everybody knew their role, everybody

supported one another. And you can't get that without really pulling that out of them. And that's

not easy. Me, you know, you know, I do this for a living, right? I do it for executives. I don't do it

for football players. But I say this to say it is really, really hard to be able to go in and say we

have this target, we and everybody says it's about the wind, and it's about the points on the

board and all that. But it's really not. It's about the people doing it, and the ability to connect that

spirit and make that spirit move in the same direction at the same time. It's that's incredible.

That's awesome.

Brandon Siler:

Yeah, it's tough. And that's why I have a book and that's why I have a leadership academy, right

is I want to spread the strategies, to be able to do that thing right away to get the best out of

everybody and to make a team be the best team that they can be. So right around the same

time that the Netflix series comes out, it's gonna be in August sometime, I don't know when I'm

going to release my book, right. And my leadership academy, right in there both. There'll be

called the Definition of a Leader. Okay, right. And in that, in my book, you will see, I'll take you

through a lot of my life experiences and what made me molded into ultimately, the leader that

I've become,

Keri Laine:

Your frameworks of success. You're making them repeatable for other people to be able to learn


Brandon Siler:

Right. So I'll show you how I did it. And then I'll give you what can help you do the same things

in your life and how you can do it. And a lot of times, that's what you want to see, right and mine

straight to the point. I'm not going out doing a bunch of that leadership cliches, right? There's

one thing that I stress is in my book, one thing that I stress is that people always ask me, like,

who's your role models? Who did you want to be like, who did you look up to? And I always tell

them, I always looked up to my future self. Right? I always looked up to what I see myself now.

Right? So I didn't have a person that I was like, oh, I want to be like that person or that person?

No, it always was inside. I always wanted that I wanted to be that person that I saw myself

becoming right. And that's a whole different thing because people don't think they're like, Okay,

well, I need to find this role model in that role. No, no, look deep down inside, close your eyes

and envision where you want to be and work backwards from there. Right. So how do you

become that person? What are you got to work on yourself, what do you have to become? What

goals do you have to set all of that different kinds of stuff? I go over that in my book. And then in

my in my leadership academy, I basically give you steps to help you, implement you and push

you down that road and make sure it stays.

Keri Laine:

It stays and sticks and actually effected and changed by it.

Brandon Siler:

You got to have some action items, though. Yeah, that's, that's how it works.

Keri Laine:

It has to be reinforced. And they have to try it on for size, and then have a safe place to be able

to come back and say, I either struggled with this, or I had this barrier. And then that connectivity

of that experience. It's that experiential learning that you're bringing back to drive at home, you

go with what you saw yourself do as a leader aligning the team, and winning, if there was not a

you on the team pulling the people together to execute? Would you bet on that team ever

winning? Meaning would you put your money into that team and invest in that team without

somebody like you?

Brandon Siler:

No, easy exit. No. Right? Because you need you need leadership? Right. There's, I think that

everybody can agree, rather be on a team on an athletic team, in a business setting. Even in a

mural, right? Anything you need leadership, right? Leadership is the driving force beside behind,

getting people to accomplish what they're capable of. Right. And if you don't have leadership,

that team will never do or never be, or never accomplish what they're capable of. So, a team

without leadership or team without a leader that they can look to, I used to say to my guys in the

locker room, I don't know if I cuss on this podcast, but I’m about to. My language is kinda rough.

That's just who I am. But I used to tell everybody in the locker room before we went out, I said,

Hey, if anybody scared to go out there, if anybody get out there, and they get scared, and they

don't know what to do, I said, look over at me, and I'll be whooping somebody's ass. And I said,

you just do your best impression. You know what I'm saying? I'll be whipping somebody as you

do your best impression of me, you know what I’m saying? So, you always have to have that

leader. That's it's not just leading by example. Right? Because you have guys, there was some

guys Chris Leak. Right? He was, he led by example. But was he a leader? Overall leader? I

don't think so. Right? Because all he wanted to do is have it by example. Right? You have some

vocal guys that couldn't perform the same kind of way. Right? So you needed a mix of all of that

stuff put together. And the best kind of leader? The best kind of leader to be, is a versatile

leader, yeah. Right? Because everybody's not led in the same way. Right? We can all be sitting

around his table, and I can cuss and motherfuck, you, I'll get the best out of you. Yeah. But if I

cuss a motherfucker, you will go in the corner and cry, right? So you have to understand that

about the people that you are leading, right, what brings the best out of this person that might be

different from this thing that I bring the best out of this person. Some people rule with an iron fist,

and I'm strict, I hold them accountable. But I do it in different ways for different people, because

that's what brings the best out of the same way, isn't gonna bring the best out of everybody.

Keri Laine:

It also sounds like you have the dichotomy of being a protector, but also a server and an

enabler. So protectors that want to protect us to control and overpower, don't leave room for

other people to be able to grow and come into their own. But you and dynamic you have done

both. So you've allowed people to shine and you've lifted them up, but you've had their back the

whole way. Right. And that in itself, I think is a skill set that a lot of people they their motivations

for leading could be power, title, money, whatever. But when you're doing it from that place that

you're talking about, that's where you get the best results, because you're reaching that whole

person. Yeah. The other thing that I noticed is when you talked about what a good leader does,

you didn't talk about the win, you didn't talk about the points. You said to do what they are

capable of.

Brandon Siler:

Yeah. See, and that's what people don't understand. People think the leader is because oh, I'm

doing everything that I could do. Right? Everything that I could perform, I score 40 points, right,

but you lost by 20. Right? So how are you gonna get the best out of everybody else to make

sure when you score on your 40 that he's going 15 And he's going 17 And we get a win, right?

So that's what it's all about. I think leaders that lead just for the sake of power saying that they

are in power are sadly mistaken, right? Because I think in order to get the best out of everybody

that you are leading, you have to be vulnerable to an extent right you have to understand that

I'm doing this for this reason you the same thing that I learned that what makes you go I should

also let you know what makes me go right so that you know how to support me in the best way

as a leader. Yeah, directional. There you go. And that's the connection right vulnerable. It is very

hard for people in power, right. But in order to lead people the right way, and to get the best out

of people, you have to be vulnerable to instead because you got to let them into what motivates

you. You know what I'm saying? Yeah,

Keri Laine:

You have to be open to that. And that's where it's the question of leadership really about power,

is about influence?

Brandon Siler:

Its always definitely about everything. Yes. Right.

Keri Laine:

That's that's the magic in it. That's it. That's the secret sauce. So tell us when your podcast and

I'm sorry, when your book and your Netflix documentary series comes up?

Brandon Siler:

It comes out in August. Okay. Netflix hasn't told us the exact date. And I might even get in

trouble for even talking on this about the Netflix documentary. Well, who cares. But it comes out

sometimes, sometime in August. And then my book and my Leadership Academy will probably

follow right in that same direction, because everybody's gonna see what it is that I did and how it

was people that were in it, people that around the Gator Nation, they kind of know, right, but

now we're gonna give you an inside track into how it all works. Some of the things that some of

the decisions, some of the things that was said, right, there's, there's a moment where in our

national championship game, we said, I told Coach, like, look, they're not going to score, they're

not going to score, right. And everybody had us getting blown out. And the initial kick to again,

takes it and runs it back for a touchdown on special teams. And me and urban are standing right

next to each other, as we always do at the beginning of the game. And he's like going crazy.

He's throwing his headphones down, he's yelling, he's like, doing his hand like, and I go up to

him, and I grabbed him. And I said, Listen, I didn't want the motherfuckers to score either. But if

we can't score more than one touchdown, then maybe they right? Maybe we don't belong here.

Wow. I picked him fucking headphones. Let's go win a football game. And he looks at me like,

and he picks the headphones up and he puts them back on and we go rock. Wow, I end up

winning that game for 41-14.

Keri Laine:

You know what? So? So you've talked a lot about the team leadership, but that shows you 360

sphere, different leadership up and leadership down, you have to be able to do both to be able

to have that full sphere of influence. So that's, that's pretty powerful. Yeah,

Brandon Siler:

There's, there's so many different experiences out there. I think Urban kind of dubbed into how I

was raised and didn't understand how I was raised and what I was about. And he came to learn

that over the years, he had a visit from my parents that went really funny when he thought that

he was going to talk to them about my drink my drinking in my party and my mom came up there

and she had, you know, a double cup, dayoff, drinking and hanging. And after, after she walked

out, he just he just brought me in and said, Just keep doing what you're doing. Like you like that.

She is crazy. Oh, my mom was just animated and loving. And she's, but she's now she's a little

bit older and a little bit more mature. But back then she was wild spirit. Yeah, right. So but I think

Urban understood something there that I was doing something different on my own accord,

right? So where he would call people's parents and do that kind of thing. He understood that. It

was me hearing that you had to do my decisions on my own right. So I never forget, we had a

practice where at the end of every practice, we the offense and the defense, we have a

competition and whoever loses has to run. And we have to take the equipment from the other

team into the locker room. Right. So we as the defense we were really good the year that we

won a national championship offense not so much, right? So we will beat up on them all the

time. Well, Urban this situation that he puts us in, he puts us first and one from the one yard line.

So they get four downs to get one yard. And when he said the situation. I was like I'm not doing

that. I'm not doing so I snap my helmet, take it off all the rest of the defense. We snap our

helmets. We're not doing it. They sorry. They saw we can and Urban calls me over. I'm not

listening or I'm not doing this. I don't care what you say I'm not doing it. He said. He said

Brandon said listen to me. He said the defense is great, right? I say yep, we is but we shouldn't

have to be punished for it. He said hold on to defenses. Great. Okay. Now the offense not so

great right here. He said, Now, how much time Can y'all spend out on the field as a defense?

Why were you know, half the time, right? He's like, exactly. He said, y'all have all the confidence

in the world, right? I say yeah, he said, if they don't have confidence when you sit on that bench

and they're not performing, it's gonna do nothing but have y'all out there longer for a longer

period of time, and you're not going to win football games, because unfortunately, you're going

to need them to score in order to win. So, let's, you think we can go out there and see if we can

get some confidence. And I say, I got what you said. But the motherfuckers ain't smaller. And we

held them four downs. And it just goes back to that understanding, right, urban came from a

psychiatric type background that worked in the college level and the college environment, right,

because he made us build a family where we had to trust each other, and we had to lean on

each other. Right? If me, you and him, we had all three of us. And we said, we're going to run

through that window. Okay. But if all three of us run through that window at 100%, we're going to

break through it, we're going to be on the other side, that's million dollars on the other side,

okay, but if one of us have a doubt that the other one's going to run 100%, when they hit that

wall, whoever runs that 100% is going to break their neck. Are you going to run through that wall

at 100%? Right now sitting here, not meeting not knowing me and not knowing what I'm about?

Hell no, right, because I have a broken neck. But once you understand, and you believe in all of

the people besides you, and you understand that they all gonna go on at present for you. Yeah,

you run through that wall, and you end up on the other side with the wall. That's right. So, that is

the kind of teaching and that's the type of thing that you build a team to become close. So, that

they do, that works in college.

Keri Laine:

That's amazing. I think I mean, I'm even thinking of the business application in situations. So we

focus a lot on the m&a which is the two companies combining together. And leadership in some

cases can be broken, it can be misunderstood, they don't know each other, they're from different

cultures in different countries, the alignment of that, and how people can have their own core

beliefs, they can have their biases, they can have their cliques, like you explained that you had

as well. The end of it, if we, my company if we can, Keri Laine, executive solutions, bring that

together faster, the winds, the return the whatever it may be, but the key is that coming together

faster, getting connected, getting aligned and getting the same culture. And if we don't, if we

can't do that, even at a corporate level, it doesn't ever work. It just doesn't ever work and corrupt

leaders, I've seen more corrupt leaders than I would care to admit it. One leader can bring down

an entire organization. Yeah, for the wrong reasons, the wrong the wrong communication in the

wrong interest. And it's really amazing to think that there are people like you out in the world that

can do so much good for the right reasons. And you almost have to have a mission beyond all

the amazing things you're doing to counter and teach and help inspire people just like we are

here, especially when this goes out. Because there are, there's for every one of you, there's

another person that's bringing somebody else down. Exactly. And we have to tip that scale. And

we have to make it where messages like this and things that you're doing and people that you're

impacting, it's gonna save more than just the lives, right, it's gonna save a lot more than lives,

it's gonna save futures, it's gonna save businesses, it's gonna save, families, gonna save a lot.

Brandon Siler:

And that's why, that's why I took it a step further and said, I'll write a book to show people how I

did it, and how to implement it, I'll have a leadership academy where I can show you and you

can have these points in these checks and live in and do it, right to implement it. So, I think

outside of that I'm saving athletes lives every day changing the trajectory of their lives every day.

And that brings me joy, right? I'm treating guys for mental health, substance abuse, TVIs all that

sort of thing that brings me joy, because that saves lives. And now, I'm trying to do preventative

work in the mental health space on college campuses to save lives and help college athletes

perform at a high level and ultimately save lives in that area as well. And all that is great. And

now with the book and the Leadership Academy, I want to share this information so that I can

clone myself and a lot of different businesses and a lot of different areas so that they can spread

their goodness and knowledge out to everybody else and ultimately create a more mentally

healthy, stable world. Yeah, right.

Keri Laine:

Yeah, we have to at some point pair up you and Heather who runs that health and wellbeing

side of our business and there's some synergy to be had because your network and the athletes

base, our network in the corporate space. I think there's some there's some work we can do

there to force multiply impact even more.

Brandon Siler:

I'm open though at all. I want to touch as many people as I can.

Keri Laine:

So thank you for being on I love talking to you and hearing your story. You know there's not

pleasure and joy that comes without some pain. And so I appreciate you being so open and

vulnerable to share yours. One more question. Once again, you said you have never been on a

podcast before? I have not. Why would you say yes to this one?

Brandon Siler:

You caught me in a good time. Everything happens for a reason, I guess, well, maybe I learned

something here today. Maybe I learned that, you know, this is a new direction, right? Media,

social media, the way that things are turning is in this direction, right. And right here in this room,

you are spreading the word of the things that we're doing well, spreading the word of how we

can influence people in the right direction to become great leaders. Right? And why would I not

be a part of something like that? So you might have taught me something here today. You broke

my podcast virginity.

Keri Laine:

I didn’t know if I ever wanted that on my wall, on a plaque but that one is going up there? In my

own Hall of Fame. That's awesome. Well, thank you again. This is great. I’ve enjoyed having

you so much. Thank

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About the Podcast

Hosted by: Keri Laine
A series of conversations with the elite of the elite…. diving into the heart of their journey, with the hopes that others seeking to pave their way will be inspired by their stories.

KERI LAINE EXECUTIVE SOLUTIONS: Helping private equity and venture capital firms maximize profits by developing strong leaders, building efficient teams, and creating frameworks for success.

About your host

Profile picture for Keri Laine

Keri Laine

Keri has held C-level roles in various size organizations, public and private. In the past fifteen years, she has specialized in helping technology, manufacturing, and engineering companies disrupt their sector with entrepreneurial, innovative success across the globe. Keri has led organizations through employee growth of 100 to 4,000, both public and private with revenue stages from $40m to $5.6b.

She has facilitated 27 mergers and acquisitions globally, spearheading the talent and human capital perspective as well as business integration, strategic planning, internal communication, and change management.

She is a former global Chief level Executive that has taken three organizations public.

She is also certified in Change Management and is a Certified Executive Leadership Development Coach who has coached more than 200 top executives and entrepreneurs.