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PODCAST – Marques Colston: Entrepreneur, Investor, Digital Strategist, and NFL Alumni

Although widely known as a New Orleans Saints star, Marques Colston has created a fascinating life after football. Give a listen to his story on our latest episode.

James Giglio (00:00):

Hi everyone. This is James Giglio, CEO of MVP Interactive, and welcome to the MVP Podcast. Our podcast will bring insight into a range of topics involving technology, consumer engagement, experiential marketing, and general business-related subjects. This show will host not only our great roster of clients from the professional sports world, along with Fortune 500 brands and agencies but other entrepreneurs and startups. We hope our podcast brings value. And thank you for listening. For general inquiries or topic requests, please email mvppodcast@mvp-interactive.com, and please subscribe to our YouTube page, and follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and SoundCloud with the account name, MVP Interactive

James Giglio (00:43):

Welcome to the latest MVP podcast. We have a very special guest today. He is known as an entrepreneur, investor, and digital strategist. And by the way, NFL alumni Marques Colston. Marques, thank you so much for coming in today.

Marques Colston (00:56):

Appreciate you guys having me today.

James Giglio (00:57):

We have had the opportunity over the last couple of months to really get to know each other on a professional basis, which you really have a fascinating story and we’re thrilled that we were able to come together and learn a little bit about what we’re doing here at MVP Interactive and what you’ve been up to on the digital space as well as the venture space. So, obviously, most people know you as a professional athlete with the New Orleans Saints. You hold every record that is manageable for the saints. You won myself, and a lot of friends NFL fantasy points and awards. So thank you very much for that. But what we really want to talk about today is your life after the NFL.

James Giglio (01:41):

And, so I think, it’s a really compelling story and what you’ve been able to accomplish both on and off the field and really as one of the latest pioneers of what pro athletes or former athletes are doing to secure their futures as well as become more than an individual that is known to play a sport. And so with that, if you could just give us a little bit of background, starting from maybe even your days in Harrisburg, PA as a local guy just kind of educate our listeners as to your background.

Marques Colston (02:14):

Sure. So I appreciate the intro first and foremost. Yeah, it’s been a really interesting journey. 35 years sounds like a short time, but I feel like I’ve been able to really accomplish a lot and really just been very blessed with some of the opportunities I’ve been able to walk into and just tried to make the most of them. And you mentioned coming from Harrisburg, my story was one that I wasn’t really a very highly recruited athlete you coming out of high school. So I ended up at Hofstra University. It was really the only school that offered me a scholarship.

James Giglio (02:54):

Wow, Okay.

Marques Colston (02:55):

So, it’s really the only school that wanted me at the time, and it kind of became a theme for my career and really my post-career life always, kind of coming in, a little underrated off the radar and having to work and kind of prove myself at every level. I was able to put together a pretty good career at Hofstra as a Psychology major of all things. And again, the same theme kind of repeated itself was drafted like the fourth to the last pick in 2006. Got down to New Orleans at a really interesting time of the year right after Hurricane Katrina hit.

Marques Colston (03:37):

Came in with a free-agent quarterback that nobody knew if he would be able to throw the ball again and a rookie head coach. And we were able to come together and accomplish some really cool things down there at a time where the community really needed us. And it’s just been a really interesting journey for me. And I kind of mentioned that theme of, kind of being under the radar and flying under the radar and really embracing that opportunity and that challenge. And I’ve been able to take a lot of those experiences and a lot of those life lessons and really apply them into entrepreneurship as I transition from sports into sports business.

James Giglio (04:21):

Yeah. That’s an interesting theme too in the entrepreneurial circles, right? I mean, I think everyone understands that, when it comes to business and entrepreneurs there, you’re always going to have that sort of pool of talent coming out of your Harvards or your Ivy leagues and some of those unicorns, that type of startups. But then for the overwhelming majority, the theme has been really this, I wasn’t the best student. I wasn’t highly regarded in the classroom or through academics but I was a hard worker, and I had always been someone that wanted to make things happen regardless of what teachers or principals had said. And so I find it very interesting that I and people always talk about the immigrant mentality as well.

James Giglio (05:06):

Where I think in the book Freakonomics, where the author tried to pinpoint, what’s that ingredient for success in business or entrepreneurs. And it really comes back down to, I think it’s second-generation immigrants that tend to be more successful because of that work mindset, right? And really hustling your way to willing things to happen. And I think it takes that underdog mentality to really drive you. Now, again, it’s not the universal rule or law, but I think both. Personally, I can really relate to that message as well. So, it’s, really great to hear that you had that chip on your shoulder as an athlete that kind of taught you, or at least drove you to succeed at whatever you do.

Marques Colston (05:51):

Yeah. And it’s funny you mention that, and I think that’s one of the pieces that has made the transition a little easier for me because there are some of those transferable skills. There’s just these baseline tenants. And it’s something I always refer to as irrational confidence. And that’s something I probably started saying about two years ago. And really for me, and really as I watch and kind of get to know entrepreneurs, it’s really the same thing. It’s this understanding of what the odds are. They’re not in your favor. But ultimately, through hard work, through dedication, and this unwillingness to let go of where I ultimately want to end up, I can overcome those odds and those that 99% failure rate that applies to everyone else, because I’m gonna work myself into that 1%, right?

James Giglio (06:54):

Wow, that’s fascinating. So let’s talk on that still. Let’s extend on that because I really wanted to wait at least originally in my mind to kind of wait to the end of the conversation to really talk about the parallels as what you had learned on field. But if we’re staying in that vein of irrational confidence, I’d imagine that there was a level of that as an athlete as well. And so especially coming into a late draft pick, at one a school or what have you, what would you say, because I hear this a lot from, especially NFL players, that football is the greatest life lesson, and unfortunately, I hadn’t had the opportunity to. I was a late bloomer. Football wasn’t my sport, right? But what is it about football that is distinctly different from any other sport, at least on how it set you up for life down the line?

Marques Colston (07:46):

I think there’s a handful of things I can point to. First and foremost, there is no more adversity than literally getting knocked on your ass <laugh>, right? And having to get up time and time again. And I think, though that physicality, people look at football as kind of this barbaric, physically driven sport, which you actually do have to be a physical person to play it. And you kind of have this physical toughness about you, but more than anything else, you gotta have and develop this mental toughness to line up across from somebody that is just as prepared as you, just as talented, just as strong, agile, all the physical attributes and go to battle with them. Play after play, knowing that you’re gonna win some, you’re gonna lose some, you’re gonna knock him on his ass.

Marques Colston (08:41):

He’s gonna knock you on your ass, right? And you gotta do that 60 times a game. So I think that physical adversity is something that translates really well, and that’s something that even playing the game from a young age, that’s something that if you can learn to deal with that piece, it kind of sets the stage for how you handle adversity and how you process adversity. The other piece I think that’s really important and really applies to business and real life, in general, is it’s the ultimate team sport, right? The position that I played, people like to joke that “it’s the diva position.”

Marques Colston (09:23):

But in reality, it’s probably one of the most dependent positions on the field, right? I could do my job, I could run the perfect route, get wide open, and, there’s no guarantee that the ball’s coming to me, right? If the center or the guard missed their block, the running back missed the blitz pickup. The other receiver didn’t run the complimentary route to get me open. The quarterback threw a bad ball. There’s so many factors that go into me actually having a chance to be successful at my job. And really being able to be accountable on one side, but be dependent on your teammates and always be in positions to lift your teammates up and kind of help them accomplish their goals so that you can accomplish yours. I think those two pieces are what really helps, what really positions football, as this life lesson, this kind of beta test for life.

James Giglio (10:23):

Yeah. I mean, what you just explained is quite literally a microcosm of what it’s like to be in a startup and a business. And because one of the things that we experience often is, we hear a lot more no’s than yes, right? So it’s very similar to those times of getting knocked on our ass. And the fact is for as many no’s as there are, there’s gonna be as many yeses and opportunities. And it’s important to just stay focused, to kind of get up, dust yourself off, and really make the effort to get to those yeses. And then obviously the dependency on the team, I mean, no businesses are done by one individual, right? And you need a great supporting cast. And that’s certainly something I can relate to as well here at MVP. Knowing that the next person is going to maintain their responsibilities is really paramount to success on any level.

Marques Colston (11:16):

Absolutely. Yep.

James Giglio (11:17):

So that’s great. So understanding that, and I feel like, coming out of retirement, if you will, which is kind of crazy to hear as someone that’s in their thirties, right? Having all of these life lessons and just being educated by hard knocks, quite literally. At what point did you kind of see yourself transitioning into the venture side or the business side? I mean, was that happening during your career? Was there anything in particular maybe a teammate, maybe a coach or a mentor, what have you, tell us a little bit more about that moment that you knew that you wanted to go here.

Marques Colston (11:58):

Yeah, I mean, it’s something that entrepreneur bug hit me about halfway through my career. And I think a lot of it is just, who I am as a person, my makeup. I’ve always been someone that I’m always looking for new challenges and not necessarily ever looking to fit into a mold, right? So, one of the things that always, I wouldn’t say bothered me, but it was always front of mind for me was you kind of get grouped into this athlete bucket, right? And the cliché is the dumb jock mentality, right? But, a little bit deeper than is I’ve always had this mentality that football is what I do.

Marques Colston (12:44):

It’s not who I am. And, blessed and fortunate enough to be able to do it at a really high level, but there’s more to me than this game. And that mentality, combined with a couple really strong mentors and advisors, my financial advisory team just happened to be former NFL players. So they instilled in me, pretty early that this is a really short window, really tight window. And when you get drafted in the seventh round and you understand, back to that irrational confidence. I mean, you understand that you’ve got a less than 10% chance to even be on a roster, right? Week one, let alone play along a long illustrious career.

Marques Colstion (13:36):

So kind of had this interesting mix of situations and people enter my life that got me thinking a little earlier than most about life after. So my fourth or fifth year I kind of made that plunge and my first real venture was actually an indoor football team back in Harrisburg in my hometown. And initially, there was an indoor football team coming and they were looking for investors. And my initial thought was, I maybe invest and be a silent partner, and this could be a really cool community outreach platform. It’s in my hometown, create some jobs, create some entertainment. So this is something that passively invest in, and go to a couple games, take my family, that kind of deal.

Marques Colston (14:30):

And did the passive thing for a year, which is really not my nature, but I tried it anyways. Really enjoyed it. Got a chance to actually take a look under the hood and see what the business side of football looked like. And ended up falling in love with it. And my second year I ended up buying my partner out, became the majority owner and literally ran every facet of the organization. From soup to nuts. So drove my wife crazy at the time.

James Giglio (15:07):

Okay. Well, let’s talk about this in terms of the soup-to-nuts nature of it. And as people that are listening to this and even me, what have you learned in terms of being that sort of passive partner or the silent partner to then really getting your hands dirty? What lessons did you learn there in terms of what it meant to be a business owner and what would you tell yourself now back then?

Marques Colston (15:34):

Yeah, it was really interesting. You learn really quickly that everyone has an opinion, right? So as that passive owner, I kind of had my opinions on how things should operate. And when I actually got the reins it was that slap in the face like, “Okay, there’s things that you want to happen, and there’s things that have to happen.” Those two things don’t necessarily align a lot. They very rarely align. So for me it was kind of getting everything thrust onto your plate and figuring out how do you manage time, how do you manage resources? How do you create resources? and at the same time, how do you figure out that work life balance? So there were a lot of lessons that I was learning on the fly just in how to manage the opportunity, let alone all of the technical aspects of every facet of the business. Which unofficially became my MBA.

James Giglio (16:43):

Right. Yeah. It’s funny because I talk about this often where an MBA had always been sort of an interest of mine, but there is no comparison in my opinion that this is going to be your best education by doing and getting yourself involved. So, on the education note, let me ask you this though, With that first venture, did you have to pull some of your psychology education into managing some of those individuals?

Marques Colston (17:10):

Yeah. The prime individual was myself. It was a lot of those self-talks in the mirror, like, what the hell are you doing? Yeah. Because I was literally still playing. So I was down in New Orleans playing in the fall, would fly back to Harrisburg in the spring, and literally run the team cuz it was a spring league. I mean, there was a lot of soul-searching and just trying to figure out what’s the end game here. Definitely had to kind of talk my wife into it.

James Giglio (17:47):


Marques Colston (17:48):

Because, most of it encompasses you, right?

James Giglio (17:57):

And see, that’s the key, though. Because I think especially now with this trend in entrepreneurship and social media is a big sort of platform for a lot of people that may think that they do things that like, “Oh, okay, I’m doing this, so I’m an entrepreneur.” But what you just said really resonates because I think that’s the true indication when it becomes an ace obsession when it consumes you. And there is not a waking moment in your head that you’re not thinking about that business. Is really when you’re in it. For sure. And it’s almost like if that’s not happening, then just write it off because it’s just not gonna work. It may work for short term, but you can’t really be in this pool together.

Marques Colston (18:41):

No, I mean, that’s so true because it’s easy to be an entrepreneur when things are going well. But to your point, it’s when you start getting hit, those punches to the gut and you really have to take a look in the mirror and you gotta find the wherewithal to deal with that and actually envision what it looks like on the other side of that adversity. So, it kind of, entrepreneurship is really in a lot of ways, how do you process adversity. Because that’s one of the few certainties in entrepreneurship. There is gonna be adversity. whether it’s personal, or it’s on the business front, and how do you process it, how do you deal with it and use it as kind of that engine that can continue pushing forward.

James Giglio (19:31):

Absolutely. And again, not sorry to bring it back to football, but I mean, I think one of the things that I identified with is like, you have to take the highs with the lows and try to remain even keel. And I think that’s another theme in playing sports as well, where you’re going to have successes, you’re going to have some failures, but it’s how you process that, as you say, and just how you keep going. So again, it’s just an amazing parallel that keeps happening with the crossover. So as some know that you’re now a part owner of the Philadelphia Soul as well, and so what were you able to. And maybe I’m just speaking for you here, and though you had a first team, your first team in Harrisburg, and now you had that under your belt. Talk to me about the transition to maybe even going to a higher tier of an arena team, and then what that looks like.

Marques Colston (20:28):

Yeah, for sure. So, the opportunity was a really interesting one, because it was still ownership, but it was in a lot of ways a different role. So, in Harrisburg, I was this owner-operator, running business ops, football ops, personnel, marketing, sponsorship, the whole nine. And what that allowed me to do was step into the opportunity with the soul, with this much clearer picture of exactly what the business side looked like. And it allowed me to actually partner with some really established business folks on the football side, on the business side as well. And it really positioned me to have some interesting conversations with those guys and also be able to take a lot of the workload off of my plate as well.

Marques Colston (21:21):

So, it ended up becoming a natural next step in my progression, just in terms of the types of deals and really it became scale. So what I was doing in Harrisburg was very similar to what’s happening at the soul level. You add a zero or two, and as you continue to move up the food chain, the business doesn’t really change. It’s literally running it at scale. So when you get to NFL, NHL, or NBA, you just add another zero or two, the nuts and bolts of the business are very similar. So that next step into the Soul, really, in a lot of ways it’s cemented in my head.

Marques Colston (22:13):

The education that I was getting and the boots-on-the-ground experience, it almost validated it for me that I could step into a situation that had been around for a while, won a championship, had owners like Ron Wooky, Craig Spencer, Cosmo, Dina Cola, and have real conversations around business strategy and how do we move this thing forward? It kind of became valid, like a self-validation for me that I was going down the right track.

James Giglio (22:48):

Right. And again, you said another phrase that spoke to me is that you considered yourself an owner-operator at the Harrisburg team. And it sounds like, once you were able to kind of remove yourself off the day-to-day operation in the week, so to speak, and now with this soul that you’re an owner where you have that extra zero, or at least you have a scale that makes you more of an owner than an operator. And I think that is a big struggle for a lot of businesses, especially small businesses where that pivot period hadn’t happened or that scalable moment hasn’t happened. And so, you operate the business versus owning the business, or, I read something recently that said, once individuals, CEOs or business owners should be working on the business, not in the business, and that’s another example of the kind of transitioning into a growth and knowing that you’re on that right path. And so that’s really fascinating. So on this avenue here we go from Harrisburg to Philadelphia Arena team, do you have aspirations to kind of take it to the next level? Or is that off-limits here?

Marques Colston (24:12):

I don’t know. We’ll kind of see where it goes. I don’t think there would be a shortage of opportunity just in the sense that the sports landscape is literally changing on a regular basis. And I think, in the last decade, we’ve seen what’s happened with the MLS and how that league has expanded into, it’s now considered one of the big five, I guess. So, as you look at E-sports and you look at a lot of these other niche sports leagues that are popping up, we’ll kind of see where your future holds once we get there.

James Giglio (24:55):

All right. We’ll see it in that owner’s box on TV one day. So I thought it was coincidental, a lot of the things that we do now are still very much out in the open in the marketplace, and we’re at venture funds and pitches and things of that nature. So I guess it was maybe six months ago, we coincidentally ran into each other at one of the tech sports, tech forums, and investor pitches, and all of that good stuff. We sit on opposite sides of this table in terms of startups versus investors. So talk to us a little bit about your involvement on the investment side or on the venture side and companies that you’re involved with, what you like, and maybe even some lessons there.

Marques Colston (25:40):

Yeah, absolutely. My experience on the venture side is, again, it’s all been kind of this journey and this progression. And hopefully, we’re not at that point of culmination. Hopefully, there’s a lot more ahead. But I’ve been in the angel investment space since about 2012. And my focus has always been on sports technology. So it initially started around performance, so the big data craze was starting to pop up in sports towards a later part of my career. And it was just an opportunity where I could enter into a space and have a really unique understanding of at least one component of the business and be able to learn everything, the context around that one angle.

Marques Colston (26:35):

So I initially started as an angel investor there realized that I was never gonna build a portfolio of 30 companies and just kind of sit back and wait for when to hit. Realized pretty early on that I was more of an entrepreneurial investor. I was somebody who if I really believed in a company, I would invest and I would roll my sleeves up and play an active role in helping the company get to the finish line. So I kind of worked at that for a handful of years, ups and downs, really learning what it meant to be a technical investor. And there’s a lot of nuances and a lot of education in there. I kind of carried on with that on the angel path for a while and realize that at some point I had this interesting perspective, right?

Marques Colston (27:28):

So, NFL player, owner, and operator at the pro sports level, and was stepping into this investment space. And there just weren’t a ton of people that had that same resume that I was building. And at the same time, one of my partners at the soul, we had been having conversations around, we see what’s going on here, we see the rise of sports tech, and we see that this point of intersection that started in performance and data and analytics and big data around performance, the scope was starting to expand. And as that intersection point continued to grow into media, into fan engagement, we quickly realized that there was gonna be an opportunity to leverage our knowledge and our expertise and our platform arena football into opportunities to work with early-stage companies.

Marques Colston (28:31):

And that ended up evolving into a group that we launched about 10 months ago called Delta Venture Partners. We’re a group based in Philadelphia and we’re what you would call a venture development firm. We work with sports entertainment, hospitality companies that are tech-enabled. And we look to bring marketing, business development support, intellectual property, patents, trademarks, that kind of support and strategy and the ability to beta test and really walk the companies that we work with into opportunities to validate their product or service and really get in front of people that normally they might not have access to. So we saw an opportunity to really package those three things up.

Marques Colston (29:31):

And being in the startup world and being on the sports side, you understand where some of those soft spots are that you can take advantage of. So, we started to package that up into Delta Venture Partners. And we had a lot of fun finding the right companies and the right entrepreneurs that we wanted to work with. And that last piece is just as important as the company. We’ve wanna partner with entrepreneurs that we feel are very passionate, and very knowledgeable, of course, but our people that we enjoy being around because this isn’t a six-month engagement. We understand at the time horizon is seven to 10 years. So we’ve gotta be able to be around people, have fun with people, work hard with people that we ultimately wanna share success with.

James Giglio (30:31):

Right. Absolutely. And so I think you answered my next questions or set of questions or comments in that understanding that on the investor side of things, most companies or funds really have a thesis in terms of maybe the vertical, right? So you have your biotech, you may have sports, you have FinTech, and all that good stuff. You did answer it, but my question is, outside of the vertical, what do you really look for in businesses and the entrepreneurs that are involved in those as real interest points for you guys?

Marques Colston (31:07):

I mean, we try to keep it as simple as possible. Obviously, we have the technical backend on a diligence side, and to make sure that companies are in position to actually grow. But initially, what attracts us to companies is the opportunity to leverage our resources and actually really move the needle. And the other piece is, like I mentioned, we wanna work with entrepreneurs that are good team members, right? We want to be able to roll our sleeves up and literally become part of the founding team in a lot of ways. There’s gotta be a cohesiveness there, and there’s gotta be this willingness to go back and forth and work with one another knowing that, again, that adversity is coming. So can we augment a team and become part of a team that’s battle-tested and ready to face adversity and work through it and get to the other side? Where success ultimately is.

James Giglio (32:18):

Yeah. You know, I find it really interesting too in terms of how you’ve structured Delta Venture Partners in a very unique way. Because on the other side of that coin from a business or a startup perspective, I think there’s this idea that any money is good money, right? And so hey, we’re gonna raise X amount of dollars, we want millions of dollars, we want seed, and you’re just kind of cash-grabbing. And that’s sort of the mantra of a startup, right? And I think one of the lessons that we have learned and sort of this carries onto a philosophy is that strategic partnerships or the partnership that is tied to any level of investment is far more important than the actual dollar figure. And I’ll argue that all day long.

James Giglio (33:08):

I mean, sure, a million dollars will do a lot of things for people, but if you’re getting half of that with the right partner, that’s going to transcend the bank account for the short term, right? And so I think what you guys are doing is really smart because it’s not only just a cash fund, it’s really more of a strategic working fund in the sense that you’re adding services that companies may need and couldn’t necessarily or traditionally pay top dollar for IP or things of that nature, or even marketing expertise. And so, really unique model. Congratulations on that. And it’s nice to see that you guys are local to the Philadelphia area as well. And I think the emerging tech scene here is fascinating to be a part of and this is the story of Philadelphia as a whole in a lot of ways that we’re overlooked by some of these other larger cities, whatever the industry may be, whether it’s in the startup world, the New York’s and Boston’s, and maybe even DC. So forget about what’s happening on the West coast, let alone that, but that’s a whole different world.

James Giglio (34:20):

Yeah. It really is. And so I think it’s great that us included, that we’re a part of this budgeting, kind of growing startup scene and tech scene and to hopefully really kind of extend it to eventually a Comcast level of recognition with what we’re doing here in the city. 

Marques Colston (34:41):

So that’s the goal. And being local, living in southern New Jersey, you can feel that there is this texting that’s bubbling, and obviously, sports have been really important to just the makeup of the city. And I think being in sports tech and this time and space is really unique because all those sports teams are really playing well. The sports tech scene as a whole is starting to get more and more recognition, and it’s starting to creep into other industries that you wouldn’t traditionally think would be a part of it. So I think there’s this unique space and time that we feel like we definitely want to be a part of the emergence, and at the same time, there’s kind of this soft spot that we feel like we can really leverage to help some of these companies to get to the forefront a little quicker.

James Giglio (35:45):

So outside, maybe this is the answer. But speaking to Philadelphia was your interest in the Harrisburg team one of the main driving factors that brought you back to this area knowing that, generally where you work is where you live, and so for 10 years you were in and around the New Orleans area. So talk to us a little bit about that.

Marques Colston (36:10):

Yeah, I loved my time in New Orleans.

James Giglio (36:14):

I’m sure, you win a Superbowl, in any city here, I mean, you’re the mayor, right?

Marques Colston (36:19):

Yeah. You get dropped into New Orleans at 22. Some interesting things happen <laugh>. But no, I love my time down there. you know, for 10 years both of my children were actually born in New Orleans. So it was tough to leave, but at the same time, the rest of my family is here in Harrisburg. My wife’s family is here in South Jersey. And family has just always been, the main driver for me. So we knew at some point we’d always end up back in the northeast and South Jersey just, it just represented a really, a really good opportunity for us to be close to Philly, to be close to New York, close to DC Right, right? And just kind of be right centrally located in those metro areas. As, as you know, we were trying to grow businesses, and really trying to take, our business experience and acumen to the next level. So that’s what initially family and opportunities drove us here. And we will probably be here for the long haul just because there is so much anchored here for us.

James Giglio (37:33):

Right. Very cool. Well, Marcus, I could probably talk to you for the next four or five hours straight, but I know that we have a business to run and you have things to do, but before we go, I wanna ask you, who is it that you look up to in this space in terms of being very similar makeup as you, whether they’re former athletes that are now in the venture space, and whether we speak to the Kobe Bryants of the world, or LeBron James or someone even outside of sports that you really can admire in a sense, or at least learn from, and that kind of helps you in, this whole body of work that you’re involved in?

Marques Colston (38:12):

That’s a really interesting question. And I guess I’ll take the easy way out. Like even as a player I kind of realized where my strengths and weaknesses were, and I always took the mindset that I would take bits and pieces of the players that not only I admired, but I thought we had similar skill sets, at least in those particular areas. So that’s kind of how I approached my playing career. And I guess my approach on the business side is very similar, so I’m definitely aware and cognizant of a lot of the athletes that are doing really significant things in this space, across the board whether it is Kobe with, the venture fund, and Carmelo Anthony’s doing a really interesting deal with his Melo seven, what LeBron is doing really across the board. Just watching him be in the spotlight from age 16 to where he’s at now, seeing that evolution in real-time, and understanding that in a lot of ways the media world has been waiting for him to fail, and he just hasn’t given him that bait.


There’s a lot that you can pull from that. Seeing what he’s doing on the education side and the community and the social justice and community outreach side. There’s a lot that I try to pull from various individuals doing really good things.

James Giglio (39:44):

Okay. Fantastic. What final statement, what piece of advice would you give someone looking to get involved in either entrepreneurship or starting a business? And again, that’s across the board, no matter what the background is.

Marques Colston (40:03):

I mean, I would probably go back to that irrational confidence statement. The odds are gonna be the odds. And your ability to understand those odds and take the necessary steps to, to de-risk your opportunity is gonna be important. But at the same time you know, letting your success become a product of the work and the dedication that you put into it, right? That’s a hard landscape to navigate. But if you can figure out the best way to understand what the risk factors are and where the pitfalls are and be willing to, work your way through you’re gonna set the stage for yourself to have a chance of being successful.

James Giglio (41:01):

Absolutely. Very inspirational. Despite being in the weed still <laugh> and kind of running that. It’s always nice to hear some other voices that really understand it. And it’s not about moving left to right of that pitfall, it’s just running right into it and then coming out of it, right? That’s it. We’re walls sometimes, and that transcends beyond business and in life in general. So, I think that’s a fantastic point to the end. And so thank you everyone for tuning into this episode. Marcus, would you like to promote any social channels or anything that you’d want our listeners to kind of follow you on or keep pace on?

Marques Colston (41:37):

Keep checking out. Mvp, Interactive, man. It’s been a joy to get to know James and his team, and kind of get it behind the scenes, look at what all you guys are doing and really excited for the next steps for you

James Giglio (41:53):

Guys. I appreciate that. Thank you. Thank you, everyone. I hope you enjoyed it well. Until next time.


MVP Interactive Podcast


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