[00:01:27] Podcast Sponsors
[00:05:19] Mic Check with Angelo
[00:08:59] About Angelo
[00:28:50] Meeting His Wife
[00:36:49] Moving to Boulder and Meeting Ben
[00:42:44] Podcast Sponsors
[00:45:32] Angelo, Ben and Kion
[00:47:36] A Day in The Life of Angelo Keely
[00:59:28] Creating A Winning Company Culture at Kion World Headquarters
[01:15:02] Biggest Trends Angelo Sees in The Health and Fitness Industry
[01:25:45] Angelo’s Life 5-10 Years from Now
[01:27:32] Closing the Podcast
[01:29:08] End of Podcast
Angelo: I want to help, Ben, fully manifest whatever this thing is. There might be like a cool and innovative product or a fad of some kind, but over time, I just think it’s fundamentally over and over again about humans. It planted a seed at that time in my life that was you never have to be stuck if you’re willing and have the energy and the courage to visualize and define what you really want. We’re just a group of humans that were born into this life and are trying to enjoy our life, have beautiful and healthy relationships with the people around us, and be good people.
Ben: I have a master’s degree in physiology, biomechanics, and human nutrition. I’ve spent the past two decades competing in some of the most masochistic events on the planet from SEALFit Kokoro, Spartan Agoge, and the world’s toughest mudder, the 13 Ironman triathlons, brutal bow hunts, adventure races, spearfishing, plant foraging, free diving, bodybuilding and beyond. I combine this intense time in the trenches with a blend of ancestral wisdom and modern science, search the globe for the world’s top experts in performance, fat loss, recovery, hormones, brain, beauty, and brawn to deliver you this podcast. Everything you need to know to live an adventurous, joyful, and fulfilling life. My name is Ben Greenfield. Enjoy the ride.
Howdy, howdy, howdy ho. My friends, it’s a tasty, tasty Michelob Light, my beverage of choice when I’m podcasting. No, I’m just kidding. It’s Zevia Soda with stevia in it. It’s actually pretty good. I should get them to sponsor this show because I drink so damn much of it. I actually interviewed their CEO some time back. His name is Paddy. You could go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/paddy, and listen to my interview with Paddy from Zevia, the soda that doesn’t give you non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. At least that’s how I think they should label their soda.
Anyways, today, I had one of my favorite friends and fellows on the face of the planet come to my house for the weekend and a podcast with me. He’s really cool. His name is Angelo, Angelo Keely. He’s actually the co-founder and the COO of my company Kion. I guess I should say our company Kion. I would have said that. Anyways, Angelo is just a fantastic guy and a wealth of very interesting information, [00:02:42] ______ information on these shows. And speaking of Kion, that’s what this show is actually brought to you by. I don’t talk about this a lot, but there’s this stuff that you can squirt into your mouth, insert dirty joke here, that really, really amps up your immune system activity. There are a lot of books about it like “The Cure is in the Cupboards.” It’s probably the best book about it. It kills off yeast, bacteria, fungus, parasites. One of my friend, Paul Chek’s favorite little remedies for keeping the gut healthy. And it’s called Oil of Oregano, wild Mediterranean oil of oregano harvested from Turkey with a carvacrol content over at 80%, which is what we have in ours at Kion is the way to go, if you want to stay healthy, especially if you travel a lot. This stuff, it makes your immune system unstoppable. There you go. How about that for corning a phrase? I’m corning phrases right and left these days. You can get it and any of the fine, fine supplements we have at Kion if you just go to getkion.com. That’s getK-I-O-N.com, and the discount code that you can use over there is very simple. It’s BGF10, getkion.com, BGF10.
This podcast is also brought to you by photobiomodulation, photobiomodulation light that you can shine in your crotch. It’s more than that though. It’s more than light that you can try on your crotch. They’ve done literally thousands of studies on the use of red light and near-infrared light therapy, and they’ve found that it can increase collagen production and skin health. It can reduce pain and inflammation. If you got a sore joint, you shine it on. It can cause a nitric oxide release and mitochondrial biogenesis for better athletic performance. It can increase your testosterone production. Hence, the part about shining it on your naked crotch. And there’s this company called Joovv that makes the exact photobiomodulation that I use every day. You actually get to get a Joovv along with a nice little bonus gift they’re going to throw in there. And this is the stuff that’s clinically proven wavelengths of light, very high power so you only need like a 10 to 20-minute dose, boom, done. Don’t waste your time. You can get the Joovv with the gift at J-O-O-V-V.com/ben. That’s Joovv, J-O-O-V-V.com/ben. All right, let’s go talk to Angelo.
Check, check. Mic check one two, mic check one two. Yo, Angelo, could you get me a little mic check?
Angelo: If I didn’t have a mic check, I wouldn’t have to check it all, check one, check two, check three. [beatboxing]
Angelo: Oh, my goodness.
Ben: Representing Angelo Keely.
Ben: Dude, we literally just got out of the frigid Spokane River. That was fun.
Angelo: That was fun.
Ben: Did you like today’s workout?
Angelo: Dude, it was amazing. I love the workout. My question is like how good is that for me and how was that good for me?
Ben: I have no clue.
Ben: It was kids having fun. Now, what we did, for those of you listening in, is Angelo, who I’ll introduce to you, is I’ll give you no clue who this cat is aside from his mad beatboxing skills, he and I went down this morning, Saturday morning. His family is visiting me here in Spokane because Angelo lives in Boulder where our Kion offices are, because he’s the COO and the co-founder of Kion, where we make all things wonderful, magical, Unicorn tears, and formulations, and things to make your life beautiful. But I digress. Angelo came up from Boulder to Spokane with his beautiful family, and then I ripped him out of bed this morning and we went down to the Spokane frisbee golf course. We have actually really, really cool frisbee golf course here.
Rather than just playing frisbee golf, the way I do frisbee golf is you either do 10 burpees, 20 push-ups, or 30 air squats at each hole, and we play all 18 holes like an hour and a half long workout, and you get a mix of–like we were talking about during frisbee golf, like the primal skill of hurling an object towards a target and the hand-eye coordination, and of course the fun. We can’t strip the fun out of it. And then, you get, of course, the calisthenics, the cardio, the step count. I think we both got our 10,000 steps in already, and then we did our cryo. We jumped in the cold Spokane River afterwards. And since it’s 4:20, we had the guys hot boxing in their cars asking us if we–
Angelo: For us.
Ben: Yeah, yeah.
Angelo: We didn’t do it but they did it for us.
Ben: Yeah. No, for us. Exactly. No. We don’t smoke weed on 4:20. We go play frisbee and jump in the river. Anyways though, that was the workout.
Angelo: Yeah. I loved it. I guess after I do workouts like that, I wonder like, did I work hard enough? Because I just enjoyed the whole thing so much. This idea I need to suffer more.
Ben: Yeah. That’s kind of fun. It’s like when I go out and play tennis, our family plays tennis on Sundays now, my kids are getting good enough to where it’s actually–you’re moving around, you’re chasing down balls, or what’s another example? Like when I was in Kentucky and we were waiting for breakfast to be served at the cafeteria that we all went to, their basketball court outside. Dr. Dawson and I went outside. We just shot hoops and played one-on-one and played some pig and jumped around it. And you’re working out. You feel great afterwards, but dude, there’s something about getting out of the stale gym environment counting reps and counting sets and just playing.
Angelo: Playing is what it is.
Angelo: I like to play.
Ben: It’s play. It’s a Primal Play. There’s a guy named Darryl Edwards who has a whole program called Primal Play. Just go out to the park and crawl and jump around and hang from trees. It’s pretty fun. So, yeah, yeah. Angelo, there’s a lot of people listening in right now who are probably, because they listen to this show, kind of sort of familiar that I have this supplements company called Kion, but they don’t know a lot of what goes on behind the scenes there, and they also don’t know about you.
And I like to get interesting people on this podcast. I didn’t just want to get you on the show because you’re involved with Kion or something like that. You have a lot of cool things that you’ve done that go beyond your mad beatboxing skills. And I think you’ve got a lot of interesting insight for the audience. And I do want to dive today into kind of what you see behind the scenes in the supplement and the health industry, how integral a role you see things like company culture and the health of employees and things like that playing in terms of building a business that can change the world. You also tie family and fitness and all of that into the whole mix. And so, I’m excited to have you on just to talk about a lot of the things that I think you can bring to the audience.
Angelo: Thanks, Ben. I’m excited to share anything that might be of value.
Ben: Yeah. And I’m going to taunt you over here while I sip coffee because you’re out.
Angelo: It’s decaf, man.
Ben: Oh, man. Yeah. It’s how I blend my decaf. I’m on this kick where I blend decaf coffee with Ceylon cinnamon sea salt and organic stevia, and that’s it. It’s super clean. There are no calories in it. There are no magical brain-bending qualities to it, whatsoever, so probably most people will find it really boring, but it satiates my appetite.
Angelo: Yeah. It’s rich and earthy.
Ben: Yeah. Rich, earthy.
Angelo: Do the chicory stuff.
Ben: I have.
Angelo: Let me talk about that, yeah.
Ben: I have. Yeah, yeah. Of course, all the carnivore folks will step back in shock because chicory has all its natural built-in plant defense mechanisms. But actually, a lot of people who don’t do all the coffee, they do really well with chicory. I think it’s a company called Dandy Tea. They make like a chicory root-based tea that’s also kind of a liver cleanse because it’s got dandelion root and stuff in it. I don’t know do a lot of chicory root though, but it’s a good coffee substitute. It tastes like shitty coffee. It sounds perfect.
Angelo: I never really tried to replace coffee with anything, so I don’t do it.
Ben: It’s black. It’s dark brown water, kind of like coffee is, I guess. So, it’s got that so go for it. Tell me about where you’re from, man, like originally.
Angelo: I was born in Wimberley, Texas, outside of Austin. I was born to very hippie parents. They had a natural health food store and a natural health food restaurant in Wimberley, Texas.
Ben: I actually didn’t know your parents had a full on–I knew they were kind of like hippie in the natural foods, but I didn’t know they had a whole store.
Angelo: Yeah. I think this is all okay to talk about. It’s so long past, but yeah, basically, they had these natural health foods. My dad before that was like a big ginseng and botanical distributor. He had his own business. He’s kind of like a wheeler and dealer entrepreneur type guy. And then, he had gotten into–they bought this natural health food store. And then, that was right at the time when Whole Foods–I think they raised money, they built these big stores, and all the smaller coops went out in the business in the Austin area, and my parents started this restaurant to compensate for that. And then, actually, the Whole Foods came and offered my dad to come and do the first restaurant for Whole Foods in partner, not have to leave his store and his restaurant in Wimberley, and he did that, and that’s when we moved to Austin.
Ben: Okay. So, it’s not like you’re bitter about Whole Foods and you never go there because it’s an evil giant corporation. It instead served as like an employment opportunity for your dad.
Angelo: Yeah, it was an original–like my dad was a partner and the whole restaurant [00:12:47] ______. I mean, this is like I don’t know exactly how well that went. My dad didn’t go to Whole Foods ever again after that. My mom and I did. I remember going there like a little kid. I mean, we were pescetarians.
Ben: Well, maybe the way your dad felt about Whole Foods is assuming Whole Foods now feels about Amazon, right? We keep stepping up the plate and you [00:13:08] ______ bigger, bigger course.
Angelo: Yeah, totally. Yeah.
Ben: Growing up in that environment, did you get access to a lot of these natural compounds and herbs where their situations were instead of, I don’t know, using antibiotics, your parents uses [00:13:23] ______ and all that stuff?
Angelo: Oh, I was raised with it. Yeah. I was I guess as a hot subject just of recent vaccination type stuff. Later on, I was vaccinated, but as a kid, my parents didn’t vaccinate me. We never went to the doctor. It was all like botanicals and herbs and vitamins, all natural. We went to Whole Foods. I wasn’t a lot, man. I never got to eat like–I was the kid that would go to school–I’m not saying this is the right diet, but I would go to school with either grilled salmon or grilled tofu and onion, like [00:13:57] ______.
Ben: A kid who nobody wanted to trade lunches with. That’s like my kids. They go to school with sardines and jerky but it’s not regular jerky. It’s like pemmican and rendered fat and avocado slices. Yeah. Nobody wants my kids’ lunch.
Angelo: I just wished I can just have gushers, and like now, nothing.
Ben: Yeah, dude. Our upbringings were so opposite, because I grew up on Godfather’s Pizza. And then, eventually, when my parents decided to get healthy, Papa Murphy’s take-and-bake pizza, and iceberg lettuce, and ranch dressing, and–
Angelo: I was not allowed to have iceberg lettuce because it was grown in the same fields and would be like so full of pesticides. My parents wouldn’t let me eat it ever.
Ben: People don’t realize it’s like nature’s bioremediate. It’s just there to soak up toxins. My mom would fill up the whole backseat of the suburban on 29-cent hamburger or 39-cent cheeseburger day with bags and bags and bags from McDonald’s, and that would just be lunch all week long. We just have giant bags of the greasy white paper in the fridge.
Angelo: We literally could not have had more opposite dietary guidelines as children then.
Ben: It was kind of funny. Now, I’m almost more extreme than you.
Angelo: You are more extreme than me now, yeah.
Ben: Yeah. It’s kind of funny. Angelo and I will talk about this more for those of you listening in, but we’ll go to health expo and walk around. I’m like extremely, extremely attentive to the labels now. I know that you are as well, but I’m almost to the point now where I don’t even try or touch anything. That’s even remotely. It’s shocking how many of these so-called health foods have, not just like the keto donuts we were talking about last night with erythritol and everything in them. That’s just bloating and gas, but so many of these “natural and artificial flavored compounds” are just rife, a lot of stuff.
Angelo: Yeah. I think my overall approach, if there’s something really good I got from my family in that, is just trying to get as much from the food I eat and taking a really minimalist approach to foods. And I think that’s kind of an interesting way that I ended up in a supplement company with you because I took supplements and vitamins as a child, but it was always like in a very minimalist approach, and food in a minimalist approach. I don’t get really excited about keto donuts. I need some special sweet and–because then I end up with erythritol, and then it makes me feel sick. It’s like when it gets too complex, then it becomes–it ends about having all these side effects that made me feel worse.
Ben: Yeah. I grew up on a–
Angelo: Maybe I should just eat a little bit of sugar.
Ben: I did a lot of ibuprofen, Advil and espresso.
Angelo: As a kid?
Ben: Yeah, yeah, because I started getting like working out and stuff and I could get sore. Mom took ibuprofen, so I think I have a girlfriend. And dad had a coffee shop so I drink a lot of espressos. So, those are my supplements, caffeine and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
Angelo: Yeah. I was like I got a headache. I wasn’t allowed to have ibuprofen. I had to drink water, just drink more water. That was always the solution.
Ben: That’s funny, dude. So, opposite. But in Texas, did you wind up going to high school after your dad got out of the natural food store and got with Whole Foods?
Angelo: Yeah. Basically, my parents both ended up being like small business owners; my mom an accountant, my dad like an IT guy. Actually, he got totally out of that and got into like IT consulting. But yeah, I would say like overall the rest of my childhood, quick summary would just be I was kind of an alternative, weirder kid. I mean, I have these hippie parents but they–
Angelo: Yeah, obviously. But they raised me in a nicer school district. And so, I just found my way like how to fit in in the world while having a weirder background. Always did really well in school. Then around high school, I got into a lot of trouble, like a lot of trouble, tons of trouble, kicked out of school, arrested.
Ben: What kind of trouble?
Angelo: I mean, like possession of alcohol, smoking weed at school, getting kicked out of school.
Ben: I was going to say with ibuprofen.
Angelo: No, because I’m getting kicked out of school, getting put in this – but before that, I’ve been like top performing student. You know, if there’s a theme maybe, it’s like I was really into people and it’s an exciting time for people and social stuff at that high school time, and I just got really into all the social dynamics and fun and experimenting. And so, it got me into a lot of trouble, got me kicked out of school. And then, yeah. I mean, probably, a really transformative thing was when I was 16, I had a terrible LSD experience.
Ben: Really? A lot of people now are interested in LSD, like I do in talking to the show before about–like when I wrote my first fiction book. I would write a ton on Fridays, and every Friday, I would microdose with LSD. I’d take like 10 to 20 micrograms and I’d get the merging of the left and right hemispheres of the brain and I could just churn out creative work that had a little bit of the analytical portions of the hero’s journey. I found this to be really helpful, especially for writing fiction. And I also occasionally use it, like if I have a long day where I have to power through a lot of creative work, I’ll use small amounts of LSD. I’ve never actually tripped on it. The most LSD that I’ve ever taken has been like 60 micrograms, which is still nowhere near like 100-microgram plus trip dose. So, a lot of people are kind of interested in LSD. What was your experience with it?
Angelo: This was not that context; this was more like super irresponsible–
Ben: You were all writing about princesses and clouds?
Angelo: This is like seriously irresponsible 16-year-olds taking way too much, didn’t know what they’re doing, wrong place, wrong time, being around the wrong people, basically upsetting these people. I don’t really actually know the whole story, but whatever happened, they stabbed me multiple times and nearly beat me to death and left me in this–
Ben: But you were on LSD?
Angelo: I was on LSD when this happened, like in a drainage gutter, kind of like in a parking lot. They have found me and I was naked and nearly beaten to death and stabbed. We don’t really know exactly what happened. And yeah, so that was me getting in trouble. It’s not like mild getting trouble, scaring the bejesus out of my parents. Yeah. That’s when I was 16. So, following that, then I had a lot of therapy, personal development work to kind of do going out of that. I ended up moving out of my house when I was 17 and started supporting myself, doing manual labor stuff like painting, but also doing a lot of music. I discovered this beatboxing skill. I was getting paid commercially to do beatboxing, and I was a gigging–
Ben: Like for actual commercials?
Angelo: Like Kinkos. I was on the Kinkos Hold Music for like a long time. Kinkos. I don’t remember what it was. It was something like that, you know, and like a Chili’s thing and I got like a TV. I got just like gigs doing that stuff. And I was playing a lot of drums in music and making money doing that. I became pretty independent in high school, pretty distant from my parents. You asked what was high school like, that was high school.
Ben: Did you get out of the whole hippie food scene and health food and change up your diet and things like that too as part of the rebellion?
Angelo: Yeah. I mean, this is probably teenage kids like the head cars. We’d drink alcohol and go to McDonald’s and go to Taco Bell and eat bad food, but never like that. I still don’t think I’ve ever had a Twinkie. I don’t think I’ve ever had bologna. There are all kinds of stuff I just–
Ben: I should take you to Carl’s Jr. today [00:21:31] ______ their CBD burger.
Angelo: Oh, yeah. Today only, yeah.
Ben: It’s for today when we’re recording. It’s 4:20.
Ben: Yeah. You can’t eat just one, literally. I bet. After high school, did you wind up studying in university?
Angelo: I did. It’s kind of an interesting turn then. I was always a really high performing student, but after all that, it blew up my whole world. And so, I ended up going to this school in Austin where I went high school called St. Edward’s University. It’s like a smaller private liberal arts Catholic school. It’s the same order as like Notre Dame. I’d also gotten into this Christian Church, basically, the very end of high school. That was really into meditation or this thing called centering prayer, which is like a meditation. It’s basically like just silent prayer but it looks like meditation but it’s more like within a Christian context.
Ben: I’ve never heard of that.
Ben: I grew up in a Christian household attending church but I’ve never heard of centering prayer.
Angelo: It’s cool. I’ll turn you on to it, man.
Ben: Tell me a little bit more about it.
Angelo: It’s kind of funny we haven’t talked about it before.
Ben: Yeah. What exactly is it?
Angelo: Well, I guess just the basic tradition is–I mean, I have all kinds of things talked about overall like kind of religion stuff because that’s what I did study in college. But basically, there’s a really strong tradition from the early Desert Fathers. I don’t know if you know about that, but as Christianity suddenly became popularized in this third and fourth century, there were lots of Christians who didn’t see it as like a thing that made sense to be super popularized and kind of like, not commercialized but lots of people could do it. We required more like ascetic lifestyle so people would go into the desert to live like Jesus during the 40 days and 40 nights, which is the beginning of the monastic tradition. And in that, there was a lot of just silent prayer. People would just sit in silence.
Rather than praying to God and asking for God to help you with something, you sit and you wait for God to speak to you, for example, which they see all biblical tradition things that Jesus said about that. But that grew and was really a large part of the monastic tradition for Orthodox and Catholic churches. There’s a ton of literature around it. I don’t know if you’ve heard of St. John of the Cross. There’s a really famous book called, “The Cloud of Unknowing.” That’s a lot of medieval monastic writings from the Christian faith that are all–they’re all very much based in sitting in quiet contemplation. It looks just like meditation from other traditions.
Ben: That’s interesting. We’re sitting in my office right now, and on my bookshelf up there, I have a whole bunch of books on the left about the spiritual disciplines, which are high up on my priority list to study and that I’m in the midst of getting into right now, and two of them are silence and solitude. I haven’t yet come across something like centering prayer, but it sounds very tied into just the whole practice of meditation, or even like Native American sit spots, or this idea of just being with yourself and your own thoughts. But in the case of centering prayer, you’re waiting for some kind of a message?
Angelo: Yeah. Well, so centering prayer is like a modern–then there was like a big kind of–there are a lot of Catholic monastic priests in the 20th century. Are you familiar with Thomas Merton?
Angelo: Lots of people in that tradition of Thomas Merton. There’s another guy named Father Thomas Keating, he actually just passed away this last year, who really helped develop the movement, I don’t know, in the last 60 or 70 years of bringing that back to Christian culture, what had been a really big root of–some believers root the Christian faith around silence. I think it’s similar to those, but I’m one who doesn’t see all religions are the same. I see them as actually different and having different belief structures. And I’m not saying that one is better than another but they represent different things and have different focus.
And so, I would just say that there’s definitely a Christian theology that’s part of centering prayer that is different from like Buddhist, I don’t know, like Zen meditation, because there’s just a different framework about how you see the world and what you’re looking for. In centering prayer, it’s basically about sitting in silence and seeking relationship with God. I got turned onto that. And so, then I was like–I was raised non-religious, like totally non-religious.
So, then I went to this Catholic school and they had to take a religious studies class. So, I took Intro to New Testament in my first semester, and it was like the coolest class I’d ever taken. But it was mind-blowing cool because I just thought like, “Oh, if I’m going to kick Catholic school and they’re going to teach something like Intro to New Testament, it’s going to be almost like indoctrination, like they’re going to try to get me to–like Sunday School, teaching me about all these things. But no, it was like the historical-critical method where you break down and analyze the exact historical context of when and how religions came to be, what the writings were.
I would say for most people who grew up in a normal Christian context, it would be very upsetting to their faith because it would be confusing because there’s like–you just learn all the details of how the books were written and how the apostles were, maybe not actually the people who wrote, it wasn’t actually like John that wrote the Book of John. It was a community 60 years after Jesus’ death who wrote that, who had really different influence and insight, et cetera. And so, I was just like, “Whoa, this is crazy, how all these things come together.” And so, young college ended up being a religious studies major, which I would have raised like my parents were like, “What? We raised you non-religious and now suddenly you’re into this church and you’re studying religion.” They thought it was very odd; it was an odd turn.
Ben: Is that what you wound up graduating with; it was religious studies?
Angelo: Yeah. Well, I ended up doing major in religious studies. I did a minor in music and a minor in philosophy.
Ben: What did you do after that?
Angelo: The other main thing I think that really came up when I was in college, I got really into languages which I’d never studied before, and I got really into service. So, I started doing these service projects. I started going to India to do these service projects with an orphanage there and develop a program to send kids–students from the university to run summer camps there. I did similar stuff in Central America. I realized that I could learn Spanish. I got suddenly really good at Spanish. And so, when I graduated, I actually really–also when I was studying religion, I learned Arabic. I studied Islam. I studied Hinduism. I learned like a bunch. I studied Koine Greek, too.
Ben: That’s a really hard language, isn’t it?
Angelo: Yeah. I mean, I didn’t take like multi–
Ben: [00:28:09] ______ that gets you hired by the CIA.
Angelo: And I didn’t know. I was like, “What am I going to become?” I don’t want to be like a diplomat or an academic or what? All I knew was that I was really, really interested in humans and how humans told each other stories and tried to live better lives. I would say like that’s the theme. I was really interested in that more than anything else. Yeah. I also studied Koine Greek, which the New Testaments were written in [00:28:42] ______ Spanish. And so, when I graduated, I was like, “Oh, I want to go for sure overseas because I’d been doing a lot of overseas stuff.”
And so, I moved to France. Actually, right before I moved to France, I met who’s now my wife, she went with me, which is kind of a whole nother interesting story. I think it’s most interesting around if we talk about visualization and manifesting, which you most went out of your life. That’s probably like one of those unique stories and proofs of how powerful being extremely clear about what you want in your life is and how you can get exactly what you want.
Ben: Tell me.
Angelo: That story?
Angelo: Okay. Yeah. I actually had been doing an internship in France and I had met my–who’s now my wife a few months before, but we didn’t really know each other that well, and she’s a few years older than me, too, so she was ignoring me. I wrote this song though that really clearly described–it’s actually called like “The Wife Song.” So, I was in a hip-hop band then. I was a rapper in a hip-hop band, like bass drums, guitar keys, kind of like Tribe Called Quest, but like jazz players. All my best friends were pretty successful in Austin.
I wrote this song about manifesting the perfect life, and that literally in detail described exactly what I wanted the relationship to be like, how it would really function, and it wasn’t like a bubble gummy like we’re going to be the perfect fit for each other and be together forever. It was more like I’m looking for someone who wants to be really real and who I will struggle to be real with, too, that I will struggle to accept and not try to force to be a certain way, et cetera. It’s like a pretty, I think a surprisingly adult and mature perspective for me at like 22/23.
So, I wrote that song when I was in France. I came back. I performed it for the first time. I literally had to read off my computer. My now wife came to that show, had never heard us play music. That was the first time she’d ever seen this music played, that song, that night. The next day, I got invited to go over to her house to go watch a movie, and we started dating, and that literally is my wife now.
Ben: Wow. Before that, had you been in the manifestation?
Angelo: Yeah. Well, so after that serious acid trip stabbing thing, I was in the hospital. I got turned on to this book called “Creative Visualization” by Shakti Gawain.
Ben: You mentioned this one to me a few months ago.
Ben: Was it called “Creative Visualization?”
Angelo: Yeah, by Shakti Gawain.
Ben: Cool. By the way, for those of you listening in, shownotes are at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/Angelo. Just like it sounds, A-N-G-E-L-O, BenGreenfieldFitness.com/Angelo. I’ll link to anything like that that we bring up. So, Creative Visualization. What’s it about?
Angelo: It is about visualizing exactly what you want in your life and turning into like in a distinctly visual way. And so, I got that book when–yeah, when I was literally in–actually, I think I just got out of the hospital. I’ve been in the hospital for a while and I just got out. One of my friends’ parents gave it to me and I started reading it. And at first, I was like, “Why did they give me this book? It seems like kind of woo-woo. I don’t really get it.” And I started reading it and I don’t think I realized until probably 10 years later how much that book influenced me and my thinking and my openness to having the courage to not complain about what’s going on right now, and not be confused about what’s going on right now, and to actively seek to design and visualize what I really want for my life, and to take the risk to try to go and get it and do it, because I think in that type of like situation right then when you’re like so down and you made such a big mistake and everyone’s disappointed in you, you’re in trouble with the law, you’re just like terrible.
I mean, the feedback I was getting was like people were worried about me but it was like, “You’re not good.” I think it planted a seed at that time in my life that was–you never have to be stuck if you’re willing and have the energy and the courage to visualize and define what you really want. And so, I didn’t start like hardcore visualizing at that point of my life, but when I see how I got out of that hole and somehow ended up going to college, being successful in college, I didn’t mention this before, but I end up being the valedictorian in my college, too, and developed all these cool programs, overseas service programs. I really flourished in college.
Ben: Well, that’s part of the thing with visualization or manifestation is you begin to do it, whether it’s closing your eyes in a meditative setting and imagining and bringing to life the tiny intricate details of whatever, maybe let’s say you want to start a coffee shop. So, you see yourself in your apron there at the coffee shop, hunched over the espresso maker, and you have a team of baristas around you and someone standing over the counter, ordering.
The thing about it is sometimes you don’t even know you’re taking some of the steps towards making that happen but you’re programming yourself subconsciously and you’re almost taking those steps, whether or not you know it. That’s a big part of the book I’m bringing my boys through right now called, “The Master Key,” which is like one of the original correspondence courses in meditation, is it just teaches you how to visualize an intricate detail, what it is that you want to achieve, and then it delves into how–whether you like it or not, like you’re programming your subconscious when you do that and you begin to take steps that you might not even be aware of towards achieving that.
Angelo: Yeah. I think that that alone is really powerful. There’s even more you can do, too, like once you start to harness the power of visualization and being really clear about what you want, there’s more you can do to strategize how to get there and how to take more action and execute better. But simply alone having that vision and being willing to program your consciousness around that then just sets up all your decisions within that context. Whereas if you always think, “I’m stuck,” or you always think, “I’m always going to do this thing,” you’re not even going to imagine that you could take a different step. So, every time that an option comes up too, exercise, or not exercise, drink water, or not drink water, you’re just like, “Oh, I’m lazy.” Like you just fall into the other decisions.
Ben: Yeah. It’s almost like a filter. Let’s even say like exercise doesn’t really serve that purpose. Let’s say, for example, I don’t know you. Let’s use the coffee shop analogy that you want to build–it’s going to take X number of hours per day. Well, maybe someone invites you to CrossFit, right, and you have that option to do whatever, 5/40-minute CrossFit workouts a day, and you might instead subconsciously make the decision to do like the 10-minute burpee workout in your room, just because you have that filter. It says, “Okay. I need X amount of time for this. So, this is the decision I’m going to make.”
Angelo: Which I think really just drives home the point of not only being willing and open to have the vision for what you want, but also taking the time just to really evaluate what’s the current vision that you have, what’s the current belief patterns that you have because they’re showing up in all of my actions every day, like they’re just playing out all the time. So, if I start to feel like, “Oh, what’s up with these actions? I need to manifest this other vision.” It’s just taking the time to even see what is the vision that I’m holding right now that these actions are playing out from.
Ben: Yeah. Do you like how all my analogies, by the way, are based on either coffee or exercise?
Angelo: Yeah. I’m used to it.
Ben: Maybe you identified my two passions in life. So, you wound up getting married to Carrie?
Angelo: Yeah, I wound up getting married.
Ben: And starting a family right away?
Angelo: Well, there’s like a five-year thing in between graduating college, moving to France, launching a satellite campus for a university in France, getting really close with Apple leadership. I became fluent in French over there. Apple France, then, Apple India. I got a job in India, moved to India, did a bunch of business development and training work over there, then finally moved to Boulder. Honestly, I have like a really powerful retreat when I was in India that helped me have a breakthrough to realize that I wanted Carrie to be the focus of my life and family to be the focus of my life. Immediately quit the job the next day. You might start to find that I’m impulsive sometimes. I immediately quit my job the next day, moved to Boulder, and immediately got married and started having a family. And that was in 2012.
Ben: So, in 2012, what were you working at in Boulder? What was your job–
Angelo: I moved to Boulder with no job, but I had made good friends in India, these Swedes who had like the biggest software outsourcing company. And so, I launched that in the U.S. and started doing like selling and developing software projects. And then, I got turned on to some family-run businesses, one in behavioral healthcare. It was basically like a young adult mentoring program and the other was this–like a creative incubator. I started consulting with them to help develop the whole creative incubator program. And via that, they then brought me on ultimately to help–they’re trying to build and sell one of the companies. And so, they brought me in to help manage that and run with due diligence. It was really great for me because as you can tell, like I said, I studied religious studies. It’s like, “Well, how did this guy end up with business chops?”
Angelo: I learned all the sales and human stuff, but that experience really helped me develop really super solid financial chops, and I ended up running this behavioral healthcare company that was based on Boulder. It’s like 50 employees, multimillion-dollar company, trying to help them develop and grow and sell that. And around December 2016, I realized I want to move on and do something different. I’d left that and I thought, “Yeah. I just need some time to figure out what I’m going to do next.” And within two weeks, I got this call about if I could help look at this project with this guy Ben Greenfield.
Angelo: And I was like, “Ben Greenfield?” Which I think that–
Ben: About to make the biggest mistake of your life.
Angelo: But I do think that’s one of the most interesting things about the origin story of our relationship or the origin story of Kion. You had already envisioned what Kion was going to be before that. But I almost wonder, if your listeners, if they’d be surprised to hear like, “This guy didn’t even know who Ben was before?” I didn’t. And so, I got turned on to you and I went to the website. And this is the website, anyone who’s been following you a while like three years ago, it was kind of ghetto.
Ben: Do you mean BenGreenfieldFitness.com?
Ben: A little bit.
Ben: I mean, that entire website was originally just a triathlon blog. It was me traveling around the world, doing triathlons. I’m writing race reports like, “Here’s the energy bar that I ate before this race, and at mile 13, I decided to really put the hammer down and I ventured beyond my lactate threshold, which could have been a mistake because I think I got a little glycogen depletion at that point, and I eventually might have crossed in the finish line with a big smile on my face. But my entire PSI being at 95 instead of 100 probably held me back a little bit during, especially those flatter–” that was the blog. It was just me writing about exercise and triathlon–
Angelo: You make fun of it but people love it.
Ben: Yeah. It wasn’t [00:40:09] ______, like I bought BenGreenfieldFitness.com several years. It still exists. So, there’s like BenGreenfieldTri.blogspot.com, and it was just like triathlon adventurers around the world with Ben. Yeah. I mean, like we’ve brought on an SEO team and we’ve made it into a big boy website with a nice landing page. It looks nice and everything, but yeah, for a long time, it was pretty ghetto.
Angelo: I’d go to that page. And I asked a couple of friends who are in Boulder, and you’re pretty big in Boulder because there’s like–
Ben: There’s a lot of people in spandex who like to exercise in Boulder, exactly.
Angelo: And people were like, “Ben Greenfield.” And so, I had a couple of friends who just could not–they just loved you and I was like, “Well, I should take a hard look at this.” I looked at what the business plan was and what the ideas were and flew up here and met with you. I think what–kind of going back to this sense of I’m really interested in humans and I’m really interested in helping humans fully manifest themselves and just live the best lives they can, I was personally less interested in, “Oh, this is a good business plan,” or, “This is a bad business plan,” or, “This guy knows a lot about health and fitness or these things.” I was like, “I just really liked you.” I was like, “This dude is–“
You, Ben, are so unique, and so passionate, and so authentic just on your own terms, and I like that. And I was like, “I want to help Ben fully manifest whatever this thing is for that alone,” because they’ll be like cool and innovate–and this might come up when we talk about products. There might be like cool and innovative products, or a fad of some kind, or someone who’s like hot for a while because they said the right things are gone, the right shows, or these different types of things. But over time, I just think it’s fundamentally over and over again about humans.
This whole thing, business, supplements, this phone for me, it’s just we act like it’s something more, but it’s just humans doing things in the world together. I was just intrigued by how unique you do it and how much, I think, potential you had if I could support you in it. And then, the possibility of all the other unique people we could bring into it and make something really special.
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Right. Which is actually what I want to get into, like how we’ve actually done that and some of the things you’ve learned along the way. Part of that weirdness, honestly, is that’s the way I’ve always been, even being homeschooled growing up, which of course just turns you into someone who thinks outside the box, or who at least cares a little bit less what other people think about you because you don’t grow up with as much peer pressure. I was a homeschooler, but I was also a weird homeschooler.
I was just totally independent and solve problems my own way, and didn’t really even do a huge amount of formal book work as much as–my parents would just hand me books and I’d figure out how to study the subject on my own, and then just grew up. I’ve always been a little weird in that way. And I don’t want to talk a lot about me because a lot of you listening in, you might not know that Angelo interviewed me about the whole Kion backstory, about my vision for Kion, about how I wanted to launch this company that would really supply people with everything that they needed to fulfill this adventurous life, everything from mind and body and spirit optimization. The best supplements in the world, the best formulations in the world, the best bars and coffees, everything that we’re doing now.
But I don’t want to exhaust you with that story too much because Angelo and I actually had this long interview where we talked a lot about the backstory of Kion from my end. And I’ll link to that in the shownotes if you go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/Angelo. We even video recorded the whole thing so you can watch us chat at each other and try and set up like big boys, whereas right now, we’re just sitting cross-legged on towels in my office. So, you and I work together. We co-founded Kion. You’re now the COO of the company. You’re running the day-to-day in Boulder. I want to talk a little bit about that, about how you’re actually building a healthy company culture.
But before we do that, I also want to just learn a little bit more, after you having been through religious studies and grown up in a hippie home and done visualization and manifestation and used drugs in high school, and now you’re immersed in the health and the supplement industry and now heavily influenced by weird guys in spandex like me, what’s your actual daily routine look like? Like when you wake up in the morning, what’s a day in the life of just you working on your own body and brain look like?
Angelo: I would say that there are a few things. One is that the daily, weekly, quarterly, and annual kind of all go together for me and they really support each other. But on the daily, it really looks like pretty consistently, since having children, it’s trying to go to sleep at the same time my kids go to sleep, because what I found is that I really need alone time, and I need alone time at hours that are either late at night or early in the day, and I do worse late at night. Late at night works if I’m in some kind of really powerful manic creative phase where I’m just like fueled. But on a consistent basis, I just don’t do really productive stuff at night.
Ben: I found the same thing. I’ll be sitting around at night. It’ll be 9:00 p.m. and there will be a lot of things one could do. Everybody’s telling me, “You got to watch Breaking Bad,” or, “You got to watch this or that on Netflix,” or there’s this magazine that I should read because my cognitive power is going down at night. I’ve realized the same thing, like not a lot of productive things happen at night. That’s when you party. That’s when you watch TV. That’s when you drink, whatever the case may be. And I’ve fallen upon the same thing. When the kids go to bed, I grab books and go to bed or go make love and fall asleep. And literally, within 20/30 minutes after my kids are asleep, I’m out, and it’s enormously productive.
Angelo: Yeah. That’s probably the biggest game-changer, like if there was anything, I could tell someone, it would just be go to sleep earlier. At least for me, that’s what works.
Ben: Yeah. For us. We were talking about this though. We’re playing golf this point. There are some people, like we have tech people on our team who stay up late, or who sometimes seem sleep-deprived when we have our morning team huddles. You’d kind of want those people, too. You want the night owls, the people who actually do get shit done at night, and we could get Michael Breus’ book about circadian rhythms and how different people are wired to operate well at different times of day, but I think painting with a broad brush. And I don’t think there are actually percentages like 60% to 70% of the populations go to bed sometime between 9:00 and 10:00, get up sometime between 5:00 and 6:00, and life is going to get pretty good from productivity standpoint.
Angelo: Yeah. And so, for me personally, I try to go to bed, actually, it’s like closer to 8:00. And when I do that, I feel like I need less sleep and I can wake up around–I mean, I don’t actually go to around–I’m probably actually asleep around 9:00. I can wake up around 3:30 or 4:00. And then, when I do that–
Ben: You’re up pretty early.
Angelo: If I go to sleep that early, then I can. If I go to sleep at like 10:00, then suddenly I need to wake up at like 7:00 or something. It’s really weird, like there’s something that shifts. But yeah. And then, it’s really just immediately drink water, like just drink two glasses of water, because if I don’t drink two glasses of water, then it starts off my whole day weird. And then, I drink an Americano. I always drink espresso. I have an espresso machine in my house, you know that. And then, I go straight to reading. I read some type of spiritual or emotional development type text. And I guess when I say spiritual, what I would just mean is something that re-contextualizes all of life. It’s not just about work or obligations or family or body or any of these things. It’s about like–that puts life in a bigger perspective.
Angelo: And then, journaling. And then, some type of exercise. The exercise, if I know I’m going to have like an exercise later in the day and I know I’m going to have time for a bigger exercise later in the day, then just like something really chill. It could be like just hang from my pull-up bar, do stretching to some music, do some yoga. If I don’t think I’m going to have time for exercise later in the day–
Ben: Right. That old used stationary bicycle in your garage that I crushed whenever I visit you?
Angelo: Literally. No, that’s what I do. Like if I feel like I don’t, oh yeah, I can actually just do a chill ride in the morning too and be like–I kind of cheat, I actually get on my phone and do some work, or I’m riding the bike.
Ben: It’s kind of funny because I’m working as this virtual CEO. We’re doing a lot virtually with our team, but when I go on my monthly visits to Boulder, for those of you listening in, I’m not saying the Ritz-Carlton–like I’m crashing in Angelo’s grandma’s bedroom.
Angelo: The room where my mother-in-law stays.
Ben: Yeah, the room where her mother-in-law stays in his house, and literally, I go out to your garage and work out on your used bike with the old kettlebells. Sometimes I got my X3 Bar or whatever with me and crush it in there in your tiny little garage. You go to the park across the street from your house. But yeah, in a lot of times, we’ll do these little workouts together. It’s kind of fun.
Ben: Yeah. It’s amazing how good a workout you can get without a frisbee golf course.
Angelo: You really can. I never thought of frisbee golf course. Yeah. So, if I don’t have time, I just try to make myself–I don’t have–this is an embarrassing thing in terms of like I don’t–if I try to get too complex about my workouts and study in too much depth, it turns me off and I don’t get into it. So, I either do something chill or I do something just really hard where it makes me feel like I want to throw up. I just do sprints on the bike to pull-ups to push-ups to kettlebell swings to squats. I just do simple stuff and just do it hard.
Ben: How are you journaling, by the way, before you get into that exercise routine?
Angelo: I have multiple different journals. I like doing visual stuff a lot. I like doing mind maps where it’s like a big white page. So, I have journals that are more set up for that, and then I also have lined journals. I have a lot of different types of prompts that I do around it, but this was going to be like the weekly, quarterly, monthly thing. What I found over time is for the longest time, I wanted to try to train myself to be like those people. Honestly, it’s someone like you, who will get up and do the certain exercise regimen or whatever my story is about you. I’m not going to say you’re that.
And there are other people in our Kion team that literally will just do these two a day workouts and they do it in this very precise way and they’re super disciplined. It’s like I have to be more in this flow. And so, what I’ve found is like what’s the container or the boundaries for me to where I can think or feel like I’m in a flow, but I’m still being productive and moving things forward. So, I’ve developed these binders that are for different aspects of my life where I have done really deep visualization and design and strategy work around like how I’m going to manifest something in my life. And I always come back to those binders every week, sometimes every day, and then I use those as ways to prompt my journaling. So, less than it being like I’m going to do the same gratitude journaling every single day. It’s like every single week, I need to be having these really deeper check-ins with myself about where I’m at in my life, how it’s all kind of falling into place or not and what I need to reset. And then, I used that as the guide for my daily work. I can’t just stop journaling forever, but I don’t have to maintain the same thing every single day forever.
Ben: I think this is really important because I’ve got like the Christian Gratitude Journal that I write in every morning. And there are some mornings when I wake up and I’m like, “I feel like this is a morning where I should be like, whatever, writing down 10 amazing new ideas or reflecting upon–” like Benjamin Franklin asked, “What good have I done in the world this week?” or “What good shall I accomplish this day?” or different forms of journaling. And for me, you’re correct.
I mean, you’ve identified me properly as that person who is pretty rigid in my routines and my habits, but I really like that idea of giving yourself permission. Let’s say you do have a daily journaling habit of being open to other methods of journaling and not necessarily thinking you got a journal the same way 24/7, 365.
Angelo: Yeah. I think it’s just finding–I guess this minimalist approach again for me, just show up and journal. If I can keep it that simple and then I can feel like there’s freedom for how I express myself in it, then I’m much more likely to do it.
Angelo: I will do it. I just keep doing it because I feel like I get to be myself in it. I think the important balance or trick in that is that I have to ensure that I’m doing those weekly check-ins and quarterly and more in-depth annual retreats, as well as making sure that the influence on me daily is a positive influence with good ideas because, otherwise, I could get stuck in a rut. I think that’s the thing.
If you find a good thing, like you find a Christian Gratitude Journal and that works for you, then there’s an element to just keeping it super simple and just do that every single day. Even if you don’t like it some days, you just keep doing it, whereas if you let yourself do whatever you want to do, you could get influenced by just lame ideas. Start watching the news too much. And then, your journaling is going to be about like–just not deep stuff. So, I think it’s really important to make sure that you have, or I have really positive influences about personal development, about thinking and visualization that support me in journaling about the right things.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. What happens after your exercise session?
Angelo: I take a shower then I just get into with the kids and–
Ben: Call my wife.
Angelo: Yeah. I do alternating cold and warm–
Ben: This shower is freaking cold in Boulder.
Angelo: It’s really cool. Well, in the summers, I do just like straight cold, but it’s in the winters.
Ben: Winter’s cold.
Angelo: I literally get ice cream headache within 30 seconds. It’s so freaking cold. Yeah.
Ben: Yeah. I was telling my strategy when I’m at your house with my cold showers. I’ll do like 20 seconds on the head then turn, 20 seconds left armpit, then right armpit, then the upper back, then the crotch, and you just do circles. But every time you hit the head, you can only last like 10/20 seconds. That will allow because a lot of times, I’ll do like a two to four minutes, sometimes five-min cold shower, but I’m always turning in circles hitting different parts of my body. It kind of makes time go by, too, because you count down facing forward, then count down facing the left in the back. Just keep on going around.
Angelo: I first got turned on to cold showers when I took this kundalini yoga class at college, actually. It must have been like 20. I don’t know how they got it, how this teacher got it accepted, but he taught yoga and it was basically just kundalini yoga for a whole semester with all these college kids. And we had to go through whatever the main kundalini manuscript was. It was cold showers. We had to do mandatory cold showers, but they taught you to like yell Waheguru, which is like some–I don’t know, it’s some God thing, and I don’t remember what it means. And I’ve gotten to do that and I still do that. Or I don’t yell it if it’s early in the morning, but I’ll be like, “Waheguru.” I don’t even know what it means, but it’s like my little habit to inspire me.
Ben: I don’t know. You’re probably fending your neighbors.
Angelo: Hopefully, yeah. I mean, hopefully, all of our Sikh friends out there, they know what it means.
Ben: Yeah, yeah.
Angelo: We’re probably getting left out right now. You’re probably pronouncing it wrong.
Ben: So, at what point do you head into the giant Kion skyscraper downtown?
Angelo: It’s actually not a giant skyscraper, but it is a cool–we have a cool office down.
Ben: It’s pretty cool. Yeah.
Angelo: It’s like a tree house. And even been back since we got all the plants hanging. There’s like really cool hanging plants everywhere now.
Angelo: I’m typically there by 9:00, sometimes earlier and sometimes later. But everyone’s there, everyone’s supposed to be there at 9:00.
Ben: Yeah. Our offices are really cool. I mean, we’ve got like standup workstations now and there’s like the Joovv photobiomodulation panels where you got to be careful when you walk in the room because you don’t know who’s going to be like half-naked in front of a light panel. And we’ve got all the special coffee superfoods to blend up with our Kion coffee and the nice blenders that you can put all sorts of stuff into and a whole bunch of–
Angelo: Saddle chairs, TerraMats, flails, kettlebells.
Ben: Yeah. It’s pretty cool. And I really liked that part of company culture. We’re sitting here in my office right now with the walking treadmill and the Joovv lamp, and there are the stool and all the different things that I use, the FluidStance balance boards, all that stuff. I just really like being able to walk into our offices and see it’s almost like a little playground, right?
Ben: I think we need to add some rings and pull-up bars for–it’s called brachiation is the technical term for like hanging from stuff.
Angelo: This week we’re going to have the rings, the pull-up bar and the yoga swing installed.
Angelo: Which is good because we have pull-up competition basically this year.
Angelo: I said it’s my own personal physical goal. And then, Caitlin, our HR manager did it too. Now, it’s everyone.
Ben: Yeah. So, if you’re listening in and you’re like a Kion customer, you’re ordering your bars, your coffee or your Flex or whatever the case may be and customer support just goes to shit, you’re not able to get a hold everybody’s because our entire office is like hanging from yoga swings.
Angelo: They’re literally doing their Pomodoro break.
Angelo: And, actually, customer service, Mike and Kim are like an [01:01:02] ______, they’re like the Bella and Brandon, they’re like the leaders of making sure breaks happen.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. How many employees are in that office?
Angelo: Just under 20. Yeah. It’s gone like pretty darn fast from none to–
Ben: And, that doesn’t count all the virtual employees–
Ben: and folks working in–
Angelo: And, contractors and folks, yeah.
Ben: Which brings it to do things significantly more than 30 people.
Angelo: Yeah, for sure. Include all the contractors, yeah, I mean–
Ben: One big thing about managing and juggling all those people is the company culture. And, I know you’re big on that. I mean, if somebody who you’ve already talked about loves to study humans and the way they operate, the way they tick and how humans stay happy, what are some of the–just like the boots on the ground strategies that you use to maintain good healthy company culture?
Angelo: I want to answer your question about boots on the ground strategies, I also think that it’s important to name that it’s more than just strategies or tactics, it really is a mindset about what we’re doing. And, everyone that we hire and the company as a whole, we’re all passionate about supplements and we’re passionate about health and we’re passionate about–
Ben: The bars.
Angelo: We’re not as passionate about enemas as Ben. But, yes, we all–
Ben: Don’t drink out of the stainless-steel buckets at the Kion offices.
Angelo: That said, there’s a really healthy balance of we, again, just coming back to the human thing, we’re just a group of humans that were born into this life and are trying to enjoy our life, have beautiful and healthy relationships with the people around us and be good people. Whether that’s with Kion or not with Kion. And so, it should be, if we really want to honor that and we really want to help people empower people to live the most joyful, fulfilling, adventurous lives, that that we really hold that and believe that day-to-day. It’s not like, “Hey, how can we do cool team stuff to make sure everyone’s happy and the culture is good?” It’s like a strategy to get the culture good, it’s being rooted in that belief. And, I think, the other big part about being rooted in that belief is that–I’ll just speak for myself on this. I think, oftentimes, when people communicate with each other, they think that they’re just communicating–and I really got this from the behavioral healthcare company I worked with and–actually, a really interesting book. I think his name’s Paul Geltner. He wrote this book called, “Emotional Communication,” and it’s for therapists. It’s on transference and psychoanalysis but it’s all about that, oftentimes, people think they’re only giving cognitive communication. Like, I’m communicating a set of ideas to you right now, but, actually, every single time we’re relating to someone, we’re both wanting to communicate ideas cognitively that the other person will associate to and then be able to have a conversation back with us. We’re also communicating an emotion, always, always communicating an emotion and we’re trying to induce in the other person some type of emotional experience in the same way that we’re trying to induce a thought in them and get the thinking back and forth.
And so, I hold that really dear and I really believe that. And so, when I think about what we’re doing with people all the time like anytime that there is an initiative or we’re going to communicate something about what we’re doing or why we’re doing it, just knowing that the whole group all the time are having an emotional experience and we’re feeding off each other. And, as conscious as we can be about that, the better the culture we can have. And so, when we are hiring people, we have gotten feedback from our last couple of hires to our marketing director and the EA, they’re like, “Whoa, dude, that was like a lot of interviews.” I don’t know. They went to like seven, eight interviews. We really don’t just try to understand what someone’s skills are and what their abilities are, we want to be 100% confident and clear that that person will be able to understand when they are communicating something emotionally to someone else: frustration, fear, happiness, joy, and, be able to realize it and name it and be clear about it. And, not have drama or other garbage or just a lack of self-awareness about what they’re actually feeling what the other person’s feeling. Because, if that is not the case, then we’re going to spend all this time trying to talk about business planning and objectives.
Angelo: But, people are having this whole emotional experience with each other.
Ben: So, it almost sounds to me like a blend of like empathy and radical honesty.
Angelo: Yeah, I think it is. Yeah, I mean, it’s like really being able to sense what’s going on with someone else and be really clear and honest about what’s going on with you. But, also, people just have to be able to tell what’s going on with them. I think, at the base, that’s the key, making sure that that that we have that fundamentally with the team. And then, it’s finding tools and strategies and tactics that support that. I don’t know how unique they are, I mean, we got many ideas from other people.
I brought a technique that I had the last company I was at, where we begin meetings with a moment of silence. And so, every single day at our daily huddles, we also have a daily huddle, we start with three minutes of silence.
Ben: Daily huddle is that all the people in the office are gathered around everyone just virtually is called in, we got Zoom line, we got video, got audio and everybody’s gathered round to the end of the day, 9:45 a.m.
Angelo: We start with three minutes of silence time.
Angelo: So, everyone, basically, starts and it can be meditation, can be breath work, it can be stretching. But, we all start in silence together. Just to like get into ourselves. It’s really cool. Recently we moved into a different person leads every day, and then, we just check-in about what’s going on that day, what our objectives are. But, we also regularly check-in about emotional things or self-care, just making sure people are looking out for themselves and taking care of themselves.
Ben: Yeah. So many companies do that. What really–the light bulb went on for me when I interviewed Todd White of Dry Farm Wines and also went down to their offices and took part in their morning company culture which is they start off with Wim Hof breathing and then silence and–I remember when I went down there, we were like gathered on a table for a good half hour doing breath work and meditation to start off the day and then gratitude. And, everyone went around the warehouse workers and the IT people, the tech people and the CEO and everybody just sharing what it was that they were grateful for that day. And, granted, it was pretty long. I think our 15-minute daily huddles are almost more palatable because like, I got dessert bar, I was like, “[01:07:42] ______ good stuff, Todd.” But, I’ll link, by the way, in the shownotes to my interview with Todd White where we actually pretty good detail about how they built that company and their company culture. But, yeah, that’s just this idea of starting off the day with some form of meditation or mindfulness or coming together and gratitude and it’s beyond just a business building, meeting but it instead involves what are you grateful for today, what are you grateful for yesterday, what you do to take care of your mind today or your body or your spirit. What’s one thing that you’re excited about this weekend and sure, we also talked about our personal rocks and our big accomplishments for the day.
Angelo: Personal rocks are our goals.
Ben: Our goals, our objectives. But, yeah, I mean that that 15-minute daily huddle, I think, is huge.
Angelo: Yeah. Like you said, we alternate between things like expressing gratitude, shout outs for other team members, lots of good stuff. It really creates an awesome bond between the whole team or among the whole team. We do monthly team retreats.
Angelo: Or monthly team adventures and an annual retreat. The monthly team adventures are really fun. I actually missed the last one but we had one of the Kion coaches flew down. Everyone went and had–he’s like a professional–
Ben: Kion coaches meaning someone who’s been through my multi-week certification program.
Angelo: Yeah, half-a-year certifications.
Ben: Yeah, 27 weeks. And then, there’s continuing it after you learn about all the different elements of body, mind and spirit optimization and some pretty intense physiology and even pharmaceuticals and biochemistry and biomechanics. Then, we also have guests come in. Our last guest was Dr. Mercola came in and talked about mitochondria. Before that, Garrett Gunderson came in and talked about like how to build your finances and your business. It’s this whole coach certification program but you had one of the coaches actually come in to–
Angelo: Who happens to be we have–I mean, man, the initial group of coaches that went to that program, they’re like really cool, talented amazing people. One of them happens to be a professional snowboarding coach. He flew down, our whole team went out and did a day of snowboarding with personalized coaching.
Ben: Sometimes it sucks being a virtual CEO.
Angelo: There’s whitewater rafting next month. We’ve done archery, we’ve done–I mean, last one you were around was when we did that big like snow hide which was super fun.
Angelo: So, we just get out and take a Friday once a month to just enjoy each other together and do something cool and push each other.
Ben: This was one of my favorite parts about Kion too is like people [01:10:31] ______ like we did the snow hike but half the guys had their shirts off doing their cryotherapy as they’re hiking and it’s got this team of employees marching through the woods in the frigid wilderness with our shirts off. I think that’s a huge part of Kion. Those who are listening in, when you’re talking to a customer support person or you’re ordering a supplement, I mean, all our employees are out using this stuff, trying it, experimenting with it, doing all the stuff that you hear me talk about from fasting, the cold thermogenesis. We’re trying, at Kion, to live what it is that we’re saying and I think that’s a big, big part of creating, not just a quality company culture but also quality products. People are actually using them.
Angelo: Generally, our team, we all believe in it, I mean, we’re all doing this because we believe in it. I just gotten–it’s funny, I got almost nervous for second us talking about all this kind of woo-woo cultural stuff and I can imagine listeners who are maybe more like business-oriented like, “Yeah, sure, you do all that but are you making money?” It’s like, “We’re running a good business. It’s a profitable business, it’s growing well, we have super sustainable month over month growth. We’re not trying to grow too fast but we’re growing well and solid. And, we also have a really disciplined approach to cash that like we don’t put money into things that–we have to take a risk sometimes when we put money into the right things. But, it’s also out of respect for our whole team too. We’re not trying to go on some big–we’re not trying to have like this woo-woo cultural thing and just have some big dreamy vision. It’s like, be disciplined business people, treat employees really well and build a culture where people really like being together and they actually take care of themselves. I mean, the other big thing is people go on walks. Three times a day, people are calling each other to go walks down by the creek. We’re also trying to go after this big vision like, you can do all these things at once, you really can. It’s been really fruitful for us.
Ben: I think it’s important you bring that up too because a lot of people like, “Why can’t I buy my Kion Flex at Whole Foods?” “Why can’t I get Kion amino acids? I’m in London or in Sydney.” It’s because we’re building a high-quality company. Yeah, we’ll go wholesale, retail. Yeah, we’ll have an international presence. And, yeah, we’re rolling out, whatever, over the next calendar year three new amazing formulations that we have to kind of hold close to our chests but we have some really, really cool stuff that we’re developing. But, part of building a really quality company, and, I think, this is something people don’t realize, you have to scale an amazing team of employees who speak our language and are amazing people–
Angelo: And, that’s the hardest thing.
Ben: You can’t just like hire six new people so that we can go wholesale-retail in three months because a lot of times, the customer service just goes to pot but just like the employee culture just degrades. We want healthy happy humans at Kion who are able to create something great so that people can experience our products all over the world, at the grocery store. But, it’s a slow build to be able to do that and do it well.
Angelo: It really is. To do it well, you have to be disciplined and focused, not try to do too many things at once and the biggest thing is the people.
Angelo: That’s the biggest challenge is how to, again, as I described for going into like seven interviews with people, it takes a lot of time.
Angelo: It takes a lot of time to build a team intelligently. I think that’s the other thing too, in terms of culture, you can say you have a team approach but do you really have a team approach. And, what is a team approach? I just quickly go to the metaphors of large team sports whether it’s like a football team or basketball team or a band, like a big band, everyone’s playing a musical band, which I think is similar as well, everyone’s playing a distinct role. And, if they do their role really well, they need to listen to everyone else, they need to watch everyone else, they need to be like sensitive to– like you said, empathic to what’s going on with the other players so that you can all move in unison together. You don’t just throw six new people on the field, you don’t just throw six new musicians in the band and just assume like everything’s going to be the same.
Angelo: You got to–
Ben: You’ll be all over the place and you’ll grow fast and then you’ll turn into just a horrible customer service and crappy products.
So, yeah, speaking of crappy products, I know that you, after kind of getting thrust into the role as being the COO and even being the co-founder of Kion, I mean, you own a significant percentage of the company, you’ve been really getting exposed to the health and the supplement industry. Traveling around all these Expo West and all the places I kind of avoid that sends you to in my stead. What are some of the biggest trends that you’ve seen in, for better or worse, in the health and supplements industry?
Angelo: I mean, there are really obvious ones within our field. I mean, you just see keto.
Ben: Keto donuts.
Angelo: Keto. I mean, keto everything. It’s interesting to see someone like you, who I think was an early embracer and spokesperson for keto defined as keto really.
Ben: 2012 when I started using that for endurance sports. Yeah, in GreenfieldTri.Blogspot.com.
Angelo: It wasn’t really [01:16:04] _____.
Ben: I think I should add that to the shownotes. I will right now.
Angelo: I mean, there’s these kinds of like obvious things like that. And, I think, other things that keep listeners to the show are aware of, I mean, bigger moves around longevity focus, personalization of diet and supplementation. What I think is most interesting is the personalization aspect. The degree to which you can get more information about your unique body and your unique behaviors and how new behaviors and new diet and new supplements could specifically help you to have a different experience. I mean, that’s the most–
Ben: Admittedly, it’s pretty Mickey Mouse. I got–
Angelo: It is, yeah.
Ben: I got an email the other day from somebody. They’re like, “Oh, we have this new company. We’re completely customizing and personalizing everything based on your genetics and your labs and it’s like a little vitamin dispenser that gives you your vitamins based on your labs,” but it’s so difficult because things fluctuate so rapidly, it’s not scalable at this point so it’s very expensive. And, there’s also not a lot of long-term human clinical studies on it as well. Yeah, sure, maybe you do have the genes responsible for low-vitamin-D absorption from the sun, and therefore, you fall into the vitamin D supplementation category but where’s the research that shows that or your microbiome is deficient in XYZ probiotic. Therefore, you should take these specific probiotic strains. It’s tricky and it’s also, again, it’s not super scalable at this point.
Angelo: I’m glad you kind of segued into this. I think, it’s what’s most exciting and it’s not really here yet.
Angelo: And so, similarly like for us, it’s how does a company like–and I don’t mean to bring it back to us, it’s just the most [01:18:06] ______ talk about. For Kion, to work within this field and try to offer people something like this, because the solutions out there, the partners that we could work with, potentially, to do things like this, it’s just–like you said, it’s kind of Mickey Mouse, we could package it and put it all together and tell you that’s what’s happening but it’s not really. We’re like selling you a story. But, what we can do–
Ben: It’s a sexy story and–sorry to interrupt.
Ben: But, I would rather–and this is what we’re doing with a lot of our new formulations, I’d rather say what makes a human body, no matter what human body it is, what do we know enhances mitochondrial biogenesis and mitochondrial health in every human regardless of their genetics or their microbiome? What lowers postprandial blood sugar after consuming a carbohydrate-rich meal in every human. I don’t care who you are. And then, creating products that paint with a very broad brush using the highest quality compounds that we’ve researched. I mean, we do a ton of. One of our formulations we’re working on right now, it’s been almost two years that we’ve been working on getting the perfect mix of ingredients. But, when we roll it out, I mean, that will be almost in the words of Ryan Holiday in his book about books, it’ll be a perennial bestseller because it’s something that just freakin’ works for everybody. From blood sugar control and we’ve got another one working off for longevity. And, I’d rather take that approach. And yeah, maybe five years from now, complete customization, personalization will be affordable and research-proven and scalable. But, what I’m passionate about right now is just creating products that work for everybody.
Angelo: Mm-hmm. I feel like the approach at Kion that we’ve been trying to take to this, interest in this type of personalization is on the content side. So, anyone that was around and got exposed, for example, the fasting challenge at the beginning of the year, rather than saying, “Everyone should fast in this way and this is the only way to fast and this is the right solution for everyone. Everyone must do keto. If you eat any carbs, then you are a bad person.” This is kind of like just super straight story that this is the only story for everyone, it’s not. People have different goals and different interests and different body types and so we tried in that. We did a fasting challenge at the beginning here and did a fasting guide. I honestly hadn’t seen anything like it before that just broke down all the different types of fasting options and why they were unique and why they would fit you and your body and what you might want to do right now. And then, encourage people to join us in our community, to participate, in whatever form they wanted to do as part of it.
Angelo: And then, us, as our team, again, we weren’t all doing the exact same type and we did different types that worked for us that week. Maybe we were busy, maybe we couldn’t do a non-caloric five-day fast because we were concerned, we couldn’t maintain it, someone was training for something, so they needed some calories. I think there’s still an element to–and this is what I’m most interested in and I think we’re I feel proud of what we’re doing is not trying to tell people one story. “You must drink your coffee like this. You must never eat this thing.” Hey, this is what’s going to happen for certain people if they eat these foods and you should pay attention to and try to understand yourself better. There’s a great article on Kion, you have a video about it. I can’t remember. It’s like–oh, man. There’s like a bad–I can’t [01:21:39] ______ changing the name because it was like F-diets.
Angelo: But, whatever it is, it just really breaks down how people can analyze your diets.
Ben: [01:21:47] ______. I think that’s–and again, I don’t want to sit around like bored people talking about our own [01:21:53] ______ but that really is a big thing. I want to be able to give people is content that is digestible and is able to be adjusted and customized to everybody regardless of their level. I have a big new book, it’s 600 pages. It’s all scientific research. It’s the kind of thing that a physician could go through and learn something from every page. But, at the same time, something that somebody from the lay public who is generally, genuinely, and very much passionate about their health could go through and also just get a ton of takeaways from. But, along with that book when it launches, we’ve got at Kion all the little pieces of that and tiny digestible format. We’re making content that will come along with that that really allows anybody to dive in at any level and get content that’s, I think, very, very easy to understand. That’s what I’m excited about too. It’s not just scaling our supplements to all levels but also our content.
Angelo: Last plug for the supplements, as you said before, about the coming up with formulations that really work for–that would create the same effect, basically, in everyone. Again, empowering people with the information and the knowledge to know why they might do something at a deeper level and they can be really thoughtful about when, why and how they’re going to invest their money in improving their health versus feeling the pressure they just have to do this fad because everyone else is doing it. What are your priorities? Is it more longevity-focused? Is it more weight loss-focused? How can you balance these different priorities in a way that makes sense for you and your life? And, I think, all companies that are in the health sphere can do a better job of that even if we don’t have the technology to analyze someone’s genome and microbiome and all that and offer the perfect thing for them right now. There’s still good work that we can do right now.
The other really big thing I’ve noticed within being in this industry is just how hard–if you’re on the brand side like we are, coming up with ideas and formulations and making finished products for people, how hard you have to fight on the supply chain. And, on the manufacturing side, to really get an awesome product.
Ben: Yeah, that’s what a lot of people don’t realize.
Angelo: It is not–I mean, you really you have to be–with the kind of feedback that we get from vendors and partners, is like, “Gosh. Really? I have to get all that information?” There are other brands out there like this too, we’re like annoying to these vendors because we’ve just found that if you examine all these certificates of analysis and push for where this ingredient comes from–
Ben: It comes back to bite you too. If you go to a supplement website and there’s a product that’s every single product is in stock and everything’s available, there’s probably something wrong. They probably have access to some pretty shitty ingredients and they’re just like filling and filling bottles up because nothing ever goes out of stock. There are no high-quality raw ingredients that you ever just can’t get your hands on because it’s like not available seasonally at the moment or whatever. That’s one thing that frustrates me is I want all our products to be in stock all the time but it’s like, “No, the goats are not making colostrum right now. We’re sorry. This product is out of stock.” Like, “The goats are out right now.” So, I mean, just little things like that are frustrating but that are part of running a high-quality company. At the risk of the comments, I know we’re going to get on this podcast already.
Angelo: “What’s this? The Kion commercial podcast?”
Ben: This is what it totally is. It’s really–I want you guys to get to know some of the faces behind the company.
Angelo: Yeah, let’s talk about Angelo more.
Ben: I want it actually–yeah, I know. I know we’re running up on time here pretty soon. But, I actually–I’m very intrigued about the musical and the creative aspects of you five years from now, ten years from now, whatever. Do you see yourself going places and with music or continuing anything else that–aside from Kion, of course, assuming you get fired from the company? Are you going to keep with the music or whatever? Write an album or anything like that? Where do you envision yourself in that respect?
Angelo: Yeah, for sure, man. I guess I stopped making as much music when I moved overseas. And then, once I moved back to the US and start having kids, it was like kind of taxing. But, of late, I’ve been making a lot more music and writing a lot of music. I just love it, man. I’ve been getting cool feedback from people about like, “Hey, man, I’m waiting for when you’re going to make your next Instagram post.” So, I’m really stoked about it. I think that the most exciting thing I have a plan right now is like a one-man show where it’s music and visuals and creative comedic monologue all mixed together.
Ben: That’ll be amazing.
Angelo: Yeah. So, that’ll be in the fall. I’m really stoked–
Ben: Fall, at the time of this recording, 2019.
Angelo: Yeah. I’m stoked about that and I’ll be doing a lot, man. I’m excited and who knows, man, maybe you and I will have some type of unique performance coming up. You’ll never know.
Ben: This podcast might get released after that. Angelo and I have some cool things in the works. Well, either way, we’ve got some stuff we’re going to be doing together in the music department that it might come out after this–before this podcast is released. But, we’ll record it for you and put it up over at getKion.com which is where you can learn more about Angelo. You’re on Instagram. I know you have AngeloKeeley.com, is that a good place for people just go check you out?
Angelo: Yeah, for sure.
Ben: K-E-E-L-Y. I’ll link to that too. I’ll just link to everything. Go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/Angelo and that’s we’re all link to where I was in the hot seat and Angelo interviewed me about seeing the initial vision for Kion and how it got founded. And then, I’ll link to some of the books that we talked about as well as my interview with Todd White of Dry Farm Wines and the KionU Coach Certification Program. I’ll do a pretty good job putting together shownotes for you guys.
In the meantime, we are about to take our families down into downtown Spokane and show them the gondola and the Spokane River and River Front Park. And then, my executive assistant who keeps my life sane, Penny, she’s coming to the house tonight. She’s going to babysit the kids and Angelo and Carrie and Jessa and I are going to go out in the town and have a cocktail and go to my favorite restaurant here. Just a shout out to Wild Sage restaurant. Go eat some food at Wild Sage.
So, thank you all for listening in and for getting to know a guy who’s really not only my main man a Kion but also really become a good friend of mine and a guy I really appreciate and admire a lot, Angelo Keely. So, Angelo, thanks for coming on the show, man.
Angelo: Thanks for having me, Ben.
Ben: All right, cool. You want to beatbox us out?
Angelo: Sure, man. [beatboxing]
Ben: Well, thanks for listening to today’s show. You can grab all the shownotes, the resources, pretty much everything that I mentioned over at BenGreenfieldFitness.com, along with plenty of other goodies from me, including the highly helpful “Ben Recommends” page, which is a list of pretty much everything that I’ve ever recommended for hormone, sleep, digestion, fat loss, performance, and plenty more. Please, also, know that all the links, all the promo codes, that I mentioned during this and every episode, helped to make this podcast happen and to generate income that enables me to keep bringing you this content every single week. When you listen in, be sure to use the links in the shownotes, use the promo codes that I generate, because that helps to float this thing and keep it coming to you each and every week.
Angelo Keely is COO and Co-founder of Kion as well as a true renaissance man of many talents – including beatboxing, music, art, and more. He’s also a wizard at creating a healthy and robust company culture and is building one of the most impressive, high-quality nutrition and supplement formulation companies on the face of the planet.
From his near-death experience on an LSD trip to his impressive daily routine, we delve into his life and valuable experience on this podcast.
Who is Angelo Keely?
Angelo is a uniquely human-focused entrepreneur and business leader in health and wellness, personal development, and education. Having studied religious studies, philosophy, and music as an undergraduate, Angelo’s approach to business development is based on historical and cultural knowledge of human behavior. He also brings a unique perspective to communication and culture as he is fluent in multiple languages and has several years of work experience in Central America, France, and India.
Angelo co-founded the French satellite campus of Saint Edward’s University in partnership with Apple Europe. There he developed and managed high-tech language learning and creative training programs. Apple then asked Angelo to relocate to India to become the lead mentor trainer for creative software for South Asia. In addition to his work with Apple, Angelo led the international department of a top-20 business school in India and successfully negotiated international dual-degree programs in multiple languages.
Upon returning to the United States, Angelo founded the US branch of a Swedish software development firm, developed a creative incubator for artists, and led a multi-million dollar behavioral healthcare company. Through his work in the behavioral health industry, Angelo refined his leadership approach to incorporate awareness of group dynamics, distinct personalities motivational differences, and mindfulness.
As the co-founder and COO of Kion, Angelo is responsible for turning the vision of Kion into a reality. He sets short-term and long-term strategy, develops strategic business relationships, guides company culture, and manages the leadership team to meet established goals and metrics.
In addition to his success in business, Angelo has a rich history as a musician and yogi. He was a professional beatboxer, rapper, and drummer in his youth – even being featured on national promotions with Kinkos. He now composes and performs original music, singing and playing all the instruments himself. He has also made numerous trips to India for yoga, was certified as a teacher at 21 and continues to embrace the yogic philosophy in his daily life. Angelo naturally brings these artistic and spiritual influences to his leadership style and approach to business as an eclectic and multi-faceted leader.
During our discussion, you’ll discover:
-The story of Angelo’s life…11:20
- Hippy parents, owned a natural foods store in Wimberley, TX
- His dad collaborated with Whole Foods in its early days in Austin
- No doctors, vaccinations; all natural treatments
- Angelo and Ben were polar opposites in their diets as kids
- Minimalist approach to food and supplements
- Got into lots of trouble in high school
- Awful LSD experience at age 16
- Got some gigs as a musician/beatboxer
- Attended St. Edwards University
- Centering prayer
- Religious studies major (although raised non-religious)
- Service projects to India, Central America
- Developed intense interest in humans, human interaction with one another
-How Angelo meeting his wife is a case study in the power of visualization…28:45
- Doing an internship in France; had met her a few months prior
- Wrote a song that clearly described “the perfect wife” while living in France
- Performed the song for the first time after returning to the U.S.; she was there listening
- Began dating shortly after and eventually married
- Book: Creative Visualization
-How Angelo got involved with Ben and eventually co-founded Kion…36:20
- Moved to Boulder, CO to start a family in 2012
- Heard of Ben in 2016; Ben has a large following in Boulder
- Angelo was impressed with Ben’s authenticity and passion more than any business acumen
-A day in the life of Angelo Keely…47:30
- Go to sleep at the same time kids go to sleep; need alone time (in the morning)
- Go to bed early; you need less sleep, then wake up really early and be productive
- Drink two glasses of water, then an Americano
- Spiritual text (recontextualizes all of life)
- Journaling: just show up and do it
- Working out: do simple things with much intensity
- Cold/hot shower in the winter; all cold in the summer
- Show up at the office around 9 am
-Creating a winning company culture at Kion World Headquarters…59:45
- “It’s a mindset about what we’re doing”
- Everyone is passionate about health, supplements (enemas not so much)
- The culture must reflect the stated mission statement of Kion: Live a joyful, fulfilling and adventurous life
- Blend of empathy and radical honesty
- Every day begins with a 15-minute daily huddle; begins with 3 minutes of silence
- My interview with Todd White of Dry Farm Wines
- Monthly team adventures; yearly retreat
- “We’re trying to live what we’re saying”
- Building a high-quality company requires hiring the right people and build it intelligently
- Team approach:
- Everyone has a unique distinct role
- It takes time to develop chemistry
- Kion is not a fly-by-night, pie-eyed idealist company; it’s profitable and being built the right way
-The biggest trends Angelo sees in the health and fitness industry…1:15:00
- Personalization of diet
- Lots of “Mickey Mouse” practices
- Education rather than instruction or “lecturing” (Kion fasting challenge w/ accompanying guide)
- Big fight on the supply chain to get an awesome product
- If everything is in stock at a supplement company, there’s a red flag
-What will Angelo’s life look like 5-10 years from now?…1:25:45
- Making a lot more music as of late
- One man show: music, visuals, comedic monologue
-And much more…
Resources from this episode:
-Book: Creative Visualization
-Book: The Cloud of Unknowing: and The Book of Privy Counseling – https://amzn.to/2IUSK6Q
-Book: New Seeds of Contemplation – https://amzn.to/2Vl1kCr
-Book: Open Mind, Open Heart 20th Anniversary Edition – https://amzn.to/2GF2sZj
-Book: Dark Night of the Soul – https://amzn.to/2Dw7TI8
-Book: The Book of the Elders: Sayings of the Desert Fathers: The Systematic Collection (Cistercian Studies) – https://amzn.to/2UVYtQI
-Book: The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writings, 4th Edition – https://amzn.to/2DyQbnd
-Book: Awareness: The Perils and Opportunities of Reality – https://amzn.to/2XJ11iq
-Book: Emotional Communication
–BenGreenfieldTri.BlogSpot.com (Ben’s original blog)
–Kion: My personal playground for new supplement formulations. Ben Greenfield Fitness listeners receive a 10% discount off your entire order when you use discount code: BGF10.
–JOOVV: After using the Joovv for close to 2 years, it’s the only light therapy device I’d ever recommend. Give it a try: you won’t be disappointed. Order using my link and receive a nice bonus gift with your order!
–Vuori: Activewear and athletic clothing for ultimate performance. Vuori is built to move and sweat in, yet designed with a West Coast aesthetic that transitions effortlessly into everyday life. Receive 25% off your first order when you use discount code: BEN25
–Halo Sport: Halo Sport revolutionized physical training by being the first-ever product that can increase your neuroplasticity by putting your brain into a state that neuroscientists call “hyperlearning”. The fully upgraded Halo Sport 2 was just announced and it’s pre-selling for just $279 (less than half the price of the first model) when you use code: GREENFIELD.