I recently sat down to have a conversation with the legend, Brandon Steiner, and we talked about an essential truth — success never happens overnight. 

In my career, I’ve learned more from other people than from any other source of knowledge. I love to share valuable lessons I’ve picked up, so here are four things I learned from speaking with Brandon Steiner. 

#1. Lean Into What Makes You Tick

As a renowned figurehead in the sports world, Brandon told us that his affinity and interest in sports goes all the way back to the schoolyard. 

Growing up in Brooklyn, Brandon explained to us that he had a learning disability. He said that while he wanted to excel academically, it was a struggle for him — so sports became his crutch. According to Brandon, the schoolyard was “his friend” — a safe haven where he could compete, make friends, and really shine.

While he admitted that he didn’t think his fanaticism would evolve into a business opportunity, he says that his natural interests combined with his entrepreneurial spirit made the magic happen. 

#2. Find a Niche — and Own It

Brandon said that growing up in a poor, broken family resulted in a tough upbringing. By the age of ten, he said he was already hustling. According to Brandon, his life revolved around two things: business, as he was working to sustain himself and support his family, and sports, which he called his heart and passion.

Admittedly, Brandon said he did not have the athletic talent to become a breakthrough sports star, but he did have the business mindset that allowed him to guide and assist others as they rose to the top. 

When he entered college, Brandon said that he pursued the sports business after seeing what college athletes experience. From Brandon’s perspective, there were not many people marketing, managing, and promoting young athletes at that time. 

The way I see it, it was the perfect field to get boots-on-the-ground experience. The result of his hard work? Brandon made a name for himself and achieved unbelievable success — eventually becoming the guy who sold Yankee Stadium. 

#3. Take Your Best and Make It Better 

Brandon said that his go-getter personality was nurtured by his mother. Brandon says that he was always told that he could do more, be more, and that he should never settle for less. 

I thought this was a fantastic lesson to take away for anyone in a leadership role, whether a parent, teacher, or a boss. Encouraging your sphere and driving them forward with confidence and compassion is essential to make sure that they know that you support their ambitions and ability to generate success. 

#4. Be a Solution-Based, Value-Obsessed Business Person 

Your value proposition and ability to listen to your customers is everything — but Brandon said the he realized it was only part of the story. In Brandon’s case, it was his empathy and compassion truly fueled his entrepreneurial direction. 

Brandon defined value as “what you can do for someone that they cannot do for themselves.”

Serving and solving have been pinnacles of his business-building journey, from a young paperboy to the founder of CollectibleXchange, said Brandon. 

From my perspective, living in his character traits allowed Brandon to empower himself using his life experiences, personality, and ambitions. By embracing his past and always getting up again after falling, Brandon created an unstoppable momentum and dominated his field of business. 

#5. Connect with your Customers

As a CEO, Brandon said he is always hands-on. According to Brandon, how people felt was important to him and he worked hard to maintain a strong connection with his customers. Brandon said that the feedback and interaction with customers were what he was most grateful for. 

He said that this inspired him to overcome obstacles and try again after working through them, because he knew he had a sphere of people that truly supported and cared for him. 

Thanks so much, Brandon! 

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