Why 1,000 Small Conversations Beat One Big Conversation Every Day

In this episode of Corporate Competitor Podcast, founder and CEO of Saxum Renzi Stone discusses how basketball helped him develop his hyper-competitive approach to business and a leadership style that balances support and extreme ownership.

Renzi Stone played basketball for the University of Oklahoma and is recognized nationally for his political intelligence and public relations insight. Raised in a household where, he says, “competition was the main currency,” Stone has never been one to shy away from going one on one—even with somebody on his own team—if he feels it’s the right way to get the job done. 

“Once, in the middle of working with a colleague on something, he said to me, ‘Well, do you want me to to it or not?’” Stone recalled. “I replied, ‘I want you to do it.’ So he said, ‘Then get out of my way. And if you don’t like it at the end, you can fire me. But I think you’ll be pleased.’”

Stone described the exchange as a “great piece of feedback” from a member of his team who trusted Stone enough to tell it like he saw it and to do so in the context of the moment. “I think that 1,000 short conversations beat one big, weekly conversation every day,” Stone observed. “Leadership isn’t about telling someone to do something. It’s about giving your team a framework and a set of expectations that allow them to be who they are.” 

In this case, a short and, some might say, brutally honest exchange set up a project for success.

In this episode of Corporate Competitor Podcast, Stone discusses the techniques and philosophies that have brought him honors as a top business executive under the age of 40. These insights include:

• What leadership is NOT

• How to train yourself to overcome adversity

• How to create value for your team

• How to balance support and challenge.

“The opportunity to compete for something that is a little bit out of reach is where I have found joy in my life,” said Stone. We think you’ll find plenty of joy in this podcast. So lace up your high tops and get ready to run some shuttles! Listen now!

Over the last 30 years, longtime Associate Editor for Sports Illustrated and 11-time New York Times Best-Selling Author Don Yaeger has been blessed to interview the greatest winners of our generation. He has made a second career as a keynote speaker and executive coach, discerning habits of high performance to teach teams how to reach their full potential.