Outlier On Air | Founders, Disruptors, & Mavens
177: Joe Jacobi - From Olympic Gold Medalist to Entrepreneur

"Change is a matter of practicing small habits everyday." - Joe Jacobi

About: Joe Jacobi: Olympic Gold Medalist (Canoe Slalom), 10x U.S. National Champion, Consultant, and former CEO of USA Canoe/Kayak

Overview: Joe is an Olympic athlete with years of experience in canoeing/kayaking. He shares his experience of getting to the Olympics, and his entrepreneurial journey since. 



Background: Joe started canoeing as an 8 year old boy in Washington D.C., specifically in the Potomac River. When he was 13, Joe unintentionally became involved with a talented white-water canoeing group where he excelled for the next 10 years. Joe went on to win an Olympic Gold medal in 1992 with many of those teammates from that original group. In 2004 Joe competed again at the Olympics (placing 8th). He discusses how much he changed over the 12 years as an athlete and what it was like competing the second time around being in his 30's, with a wife, and a 3 year-old at home.

Joe's Entrepreneurial Journey: Joe was the CEO of USA Canoe/Kayak from 2009-2014, and although it was a big leap of faith, he decided to step down to pursue other entrepreneurial dreams like writing, speaking, and consulting. Currently, every Sunday, Joe writes a newsletter where he shares his thoughts with others, offers encouraging words, tips on improving performance, and other meaningful topics through many experiences. With this newsletter, Joe shares that he is exploring his vulnerabilities writing each week, and has found that people are drawn to that and his email list continues to grow.

Shifting to the Entrepreneurial World: Joe explains that his wife has always been an entrepreneur and is very successful at it. When he decided to make the shift to focus on his entrepreneurial aspirations, he was worried about what his wife and daughter would think, but shares how they were more than happy to support him with his new endeavors. He feels that with this new journey, he has had more time to focus on being a dad, working smarter each day, and really focus on what he wants to do for the future. His life now has space and room to grow and incubate new ideas.

Consulting: Joe works more with the corporate and executive space in the performance and strategy world. He focuses on starting with his clients' health and giving them the capacity that they need to perform successfully in whatever form of work they do. Joe feels that good health is crucial to cultivating a better environment, which in turn will allow smoother-running systems.  Joe wants his clients to be able to continue on a positive path once he leaves.

Work-Life Balance: Joe starts his day on a positive note- he wakes up early, exercises daily, and practices constant gratitude. 

Take Away: Overall, Joe teaches us that we should always strive to have balance in our life and make our personal health a priority. As we do so, all other aspects of our life will flow smoother. He has also teaches us that gratitude is an important part of life and that we should be grateful more often. 

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Connect With Joe:

Website | Google+ | @JoeJacobi

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Direct download: Joe_Jacobi.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 12:00am MST