Catch Michael Hubicki on the #PirateBroadcast™ - russjohns

Catch Michael Hubicki on the #PirateBroadcast™

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Audio digitally transcribed by Otter.ai

Introduction 0:02
Welcome to the #PirateBroadcast™, where we interview #interestingpeople doing #interestingthings. Where you can expand your connections, your community, #kindnessiscool and #smilesarefree. Let’s get this party started.

Russ Johns 0:19
It's beautiful day for the #PirateBroadcast™. And we're going to be starting off with Mike Hubicki. And Mike, how are you today?

Michael Hubicki 0:27
Doing amazing, Russ, really, really great. We've had our first big snow dump of the year yesterday, and today, it's beautiful blue skies and sunny.

Russ Johns 0:37
Oh, I love blue skies in the snow. You know, when I was a ski bum, I used to look forward to those days.

Michael Hubicki 0:45
Nice. That's typical Canadian, hey? Discuss the weather right off the top.

Russ Johns 0:52
Talk about the weather. You know, the thing about it is that we've known each other for a little bit now and and I just enjoy being around you because you're such a positive influence. And I just want to share a couple of things that are going on in your world. You've had a long history of being an architect and being involved in a lot of different municipalities, cities and towns and, parts of the country. And now you're moving into something that is very exciting. I kind of wanted to have you explain what thriving mayor is all about just to get the party started, then we'll work backwards from there.

Michael Hubicki 1:37
Yeah, awesome. So I'm actually graduated as a landscape architect. And I worked for 31 years in corporate America, corporate Canada, and mostly in public realm. And that's parks and trails and waterfronts, street scapes, civic squares, things like that. So the places where people go to, to be outside and gather, and really trying to work on animation of public spaces. And because there was always, almost always in municipalities, I worked with the public that the people that live there, I worked with the local contractors, and first and foremost, I worked with the council, and the mayor, the councillors, and then the staff in these municipalities, and they would quite often come to us and say, here's an opportunity, or here's a challenge we're facing. How do we take advantage of this? There's always a budget, there's always a program that has to be accommodated, and things like that. So as a professional consultant, landscape architect, this is what we did. And my underlying philosophy was always one of stewardship. So caring for plants, caring for people, caring for the team that we put together to actually implement this project. And from that, as I move through my career, and got involved in some really exciting, interesting projects, I also then became much more interested in coaching. And I started with my daughter and coaching her soccer team when she was I think, nine or 10 years old. I'd say, honey, how did I do at coaching today? Well, Daddy, you you weren't that great. You were kind of telling me what to do, but it didn't really help me. And I said, wow, that's really important. That's right to the heart. And I've got to fix that. I went on, I embarked on a coaching journey, which involved certification with the Canadian coaching, Association, achieving a Master's of coaching education at Ohio University, online. And I just, I love coaching. I love the theory of it. I love the practice of it. And so I wanted to bring these two things together, coaching and landscape architecture and the consulting of city building of town building. I developed this Book two years ago, now. I developed this methodology, which is basically a venn diagram, and it was eight circles. And each of the circles had a different characteristic or attribute of a client that I wanted to work with that I thought I could help them the most, and that they could help widen my impact. Underlying all this is I just really want to try to help improve the quality of living for as many people as possible. 80% of us, over 80% of us live in cities and towns. And it's just going to get more and more and more. So those are the folks that i thought, you know, this is where I can really make the biggest difference. This Venn diagram with all of the attributes around the outside when I zeroed in on the middle of the target, it was mayors. So I went through this kind of logical process like engineers and architects and landscape architects, planners do. And I arrived at this answer. So thriving mayor is the concentration, the focus of my practice now to to bring my service and my special gifts to this particular group of superheroes who we are to, you know, rejuvenate our cities and towns, and it really enhanced the quality of living for most of us, or 80% of us.

Russ Johns 5:26
You know, it's interesting, Michael, that, working with municipalities and there's been some projects I've worked with in the past, and there's a lot of influence from the public, and some of these projects have to be decided upon through some committees. And so it's a process, it's a long process. And through that process, there's lots of navigating through people that have agendas, and people that want one thing and one certain way, and people want different outcomes. And I'm sure that that journey through those negotiations, and navigations helped you become a better coach. Has that been the case? Or how have you seen that influence you going forward in your coaching career?

Michael Hubicki 6:22
That's a really astute observation, Russ, and very early in my career, I realized that communication, absolutely essential, you could be the best landscape architect or architect designer. But if you can't bring people in, if you can't engage them, if you can't excite them, and make them feel that sense of ownership in your vision, which is really their vision, but you're helping them articulate it, and you're kind of lost, and your best idea is never going to be realized, it's never going to be product to public. So I guess right from the very beginning, I have three sisters, and we live right on Lake Ontario. We played outside a lot and I was always sort of the one that got things going, I designed the games, and I designed the adventures and kind of made teams and set the rules and it wasn't about winning, it was about like this, let's be together and have the very best time that we can. So I think I have an inherent passion for team building. As I got into my professional career, this really came to the forefront. And people would come to me after presentations and say, well, have you thought about being a teacher? And back then coaching was really more about sports than a profession. And, and we didn't really think of it that way. But you're absolutely right. Once I looked into coaching as a profession, the light bulb went off. And it's really about asking great questions, and then listening, and trying to be intuitive and use our innate intelligence, as best as possible. So that was sort of a, I don't know if it's in my DNA, or kind of the ecology, but I can see now looking back on my journey, how it was just such a natural progression. Yeah, it was super fortunate to be able to find a profession that matched my kind of approach to things and care for the environment.

Russ Johns 8:27
Well, and I love, kind of what you triggered on was the opportunity for people to communicate to people to the point where you can bring them in and create ownership from a lot of different parties that may not necessarily agree on everything, and have that outcome, be a bigger, broader vision, to what is going to take place or what the future is going to hold. It's like that faith in the future that this is going to be okay. You know, and that's a huge opportunity. I just see the connection between that and the coaching where you're asking good questions and probing in their psyche of the whoever you're coaching, and you have to allow them to see the vision in their own mind and kind of transfer that into outcome every single time. And that's an amazing skill. I just have to applaud you for reaching out. And the beautiful thing about that being a marker and being somebody that's been in media and advertising for years, is that you have a very focused niche. Mayors. That is also churning itself. It's overturning on a regular basis, potentially

Michael Hubicki 9:52
Four years, potentially.

Russ Johns 9:54
Four years. So you got a four year cycle. So you don't catch this four years. get someone else the next four years. Yeah, so it's a beautiful plan, beautiful strategy, and you seem to enjoy it.

Michael Hubicki 10:07
I love it. And I just wanted to go back to the opportunity and hand in hand with the opportunity, Russ, is a responsibility. Studies have been done, and I'm an athletic coach as well coach at Durham College men's volleyball team. And there's been studies that have been done that show that a coach's influence is second only, usually to a brother or sister. So a coach's influence on a young person or young athlete is, is right up at the very top. So there's an incredible responsibility to us as coaches, to be stewards of our clients of our coaches. And I take that extremely, extremely, to heart in everything I do.

Russ Johns 10:58
I've always found it a little bit ironic to think that the best athletes in the world have coaches, you know, every gold medalist every person that's been in the Olympics, you operating at the highest levels, they might have multiple coaches. And in business, it's it's always been fairly, almost, you know, you have mentors, and you have masterminds, but it's always more independence is always thought to be a more important skill set. And I'm thinking to myself, why would...especially mayors, you know, a lot of times they're business owners, or they're attorneys or something along those lines, or they have a political influence. However, they still need someone that is not partisan in their parties or attached to their location, and to kind of influence that thought process, not the outcome, just the thought process of how to get to the outcome.

Michael Hubicki 12:09
Yeah, that's a great point. And the way I look at it, Russ, is that I want to be a trusted thinking partner for a mayor to to call, and we have a confidential conversation. And it's so important to give people an opportunity in a safe environment and trusting environment, a secure environment, where they can speak their mind, they can speak their heart about what's really going on. Am I actually following the path of my heart? I've got a challenge here, and I'm not quite sure which road to take, and just to be able to talk it through sometimes, and give it a different perspective, whether it's objective or subjective, is extremely, extremely valuable. And the other thing that I'm trying to really do is to provide as much value as possible by providing some training through the skill Academy. And by providing an opportunity to interview mayors and for me to get to know them in a way that I didn't get to know them when I was the client. I worked on their projects. And then to create this just like you do is #interestingpeople doing #interestingthings. Well, there's some of the most #interestingpeople in our society. And once elected take on this incredibly complex role. And sometimes not being fully prepared, or having been given the tools that would be beneficial to do the very best job that they can do. So I'd really love to be there as one of these services or one of these opportunities for them to help them really thrive, both personally and professionally.

Russ Johns 13:59
Yeah, I really find it fascinating, because I mean, you think about the pressures that a mayor has, compared to almost any other job. First and foremost, it's a nominated job, you know, you have to be elected to be there. And you have to be elected by enough people that believe that you can make a difference. And there's no, not that I'm aware of, there's no training manual to say this is how the mayor needs to act and respond and be appropriate. thinking there's lots of coaching opportunities that are pretty broad. So how are you going to select and decide what kind of an impact you can make with the time that you're given?

Michael Hubicki 14:48
Oh, that's it. Now that's a true marketers question. So I think my philosophy is very straightforward, and I published it and But I care about is also I think comes comes through loud and clear in my marketing and my information that I post so I care about deeply, deeply, deeply care about ecology, stewardship, the environment sustainability, equity for all. And in trying to do that in urban situations, yeah. So I think mayors inherently have that common philosophy. But sometimes they may get distracted with something or another, which, especially around election time, you know, and I really want to focus on the times in between elections, when they're like, okay, now things have calmed down, he or she is in their role and they're moving through the mayorship, and they're working with all their constituencies and the different colleagues and partnerships and help them in that way. So it's, I'm really open. If this goes like I think it's going to go, there may be some group coaching opportunities in school. Academy, as an example has a built in group coaching component where mayors can come together online for an hour at a time. And we review a really interesting book in 10 to 12 minutes, and then they think about what's the current challenge I'm facing? What are the obstacles? What's a quick action that I can take? And then they break out into groups of three to four people, mayors, all peers, and they work through these solutions and ideas together and brainstorm. So the idea is that after that one hour, they go back to town hall, City Hall, or even home with an action that they can take and implement. So my mind sometimes is just spinning with all the ideas. It's fun being an entrepreneur, as well, and I love that I've been able to take a passion and an aptitude or skill set and bring it to a fairly focused group.

Russ Johns 17:09
Well, I have to applaud your efforts and energy into this because you've done a great job. And I know that there is an abundance of opportunities out there to assist and support and mentor and develop mayors into a higher producing output from their impact in the four years that they're serving. And also, I think it's really good that the stewardship part be included in the equation. Because stewardship, a lot of people are not aware of some of the complications that are in involved in that process. I'll give you an example. I took a two year sustainable farming program, where I was working on farming, and I wrote some grants and started a farmers market. We were raising organic potatoes and doing pastured poultry, and all these things and there's a lot of pushback in a lot of different areas, that it's challenging to be a good steward and make an impact and do the right thing. There's a lot of forces that are challenging in that arena. So you have to navigate, you have to learn how to navigate just like the vision that you put in place for the landscaping. So you have the perfect skill set for bringing this together. I think it's really important for people to understand, take the initiative, and build your consulting in your...you know, right now we're kind of in a change where we're building out a lot of entrepreneurs right now because they're not employed by employers. So the creative people that are pushing the gas pedal and saying, hey, let's do something more than we have before. like yourself, all of these ideas are going to come out and there's going to be a lot more opportunities that are showing up and one of the things as an entrepreneur is removing some of those opportunities so you have focus as a coach. How do you balance the excitement of all the opportunities that you see versus the focus you have to have in order to accomplish a single goal?

Michael Hubicki 19:41
That was a long statement, Russ, and the way you started it with the sustainable agriculture, and I want to go back to that, but for me...

Russ Johns 19:51
I ramble sometimes.

Michael Hubicki 19:52
I love it. But for me, it's who not how. There's a great book by Dan Sullivan and Ben Hardy that just came out, you know who not how, and it's about getting a team creating a village, a tribe around you and your vision.

Russ Johns 20:10
Like, pirates.

Michael Hubicki 20:13
You helped me, you helped me immensely, Russ, and the mastermind that you've formed. And the guys that Dubb, we've made other connections through that, too. And then other people along this entrepreneurial journey. Yeah, we're all in it together. And because we all want to make a positive difference, people give back. They're like you talked about being there for each other. And it warms your heart. When we reach out and we help each other along the way. That's what I would really love to do with mayors in the way that I can best serve them. And I just wanted to go back to the urban agriculture or sustainable agriculture and what's the first step? So for me, I was very similar and in 2002, I planned and built, designed and built my own off grid sustainable home with healthy home principles that actually won an energy efficiency award by entercan in Canada. But I did it because I wanted to see if it was possible, there was a piece of land that didn't have electricity, it didn't have a road, it didn't have water. It was landlocked, it didn't have anything. And I took a year to plan it all through. But being a pioneer and having that explorer principle or philosophy became a real fun passion. I lived there 10 years, and it was fantastic. But it was taking that first step. I'm having that vision and I would love to see our cities and towns become more sustainable, producing more food locally. And there's some amazing initiatives now in Canada and the States and around the globe, that I would love to get to understand better how people are implementing these. So it is all so exciting. And it can be really overwhelming. Chunk it down and you get help.

Russ Johns 22:22
Yeah. Well, you know, having grown up in commercial construction, and having to read blueprints, and pour concrete and layout buildings, and everything else, I see everything as a project. That's probably why my logical brain is, okay, just break it down into the smallest common denominator, assign a task to that, assign a role and responsibility to budget, and then move forward from there and just build out. The creative side is like, well, how can I manipulate and maneuver through this maze of tasks to get to the end result? And like I said, one of the biggest challenges I have is the distraction of everything that could be to focus back on what should be, you know, and it's like, okay, I just have to make sure that I continue to focus on and it changes. Every journey is never a straight line for entrepreneurs. There's challenges and obstacles that you have to navigate through and around. And it's just one of these things, that sustainability is the same way. I could imagine a time where every rooftop has a garden or a hydro. One of the, you know, like a greenhouse. Where it's all organic plant growing, and everything that goes along with that. And, I mean, the model has been proven. Vertical farming, there's lots of different opportunities, and some of those ideas that could micro farm could be a better outcome and a better output than what we're doing right now. Because it's immediate, and it's near next door, or it's right above us. Yeah, you go up to the roof and go shopping. Some of those ideas that have to take hold from a public perspective. Imagine that the outcome is going to be a positive one, and then get people on board to take those roles and responsibility to make it happen and implement. I think it's going to be a groundswell opportunity.

Michael Hubicki 24:48
It's happening, Russ, it's incredible. They're in cities and towns, approximately 30% of the actual surface area is taken up with roads and parking lots, like it's probably higher in some cities. And this infrastructure, which is usually asphalt, it absorbs heat. So the cities and towns become an urban heat island, they get hotter and hotter and hotter, don't allow the ground the rainwater, or snow or precipitation to infiltrate into the ground. They create very sterile environments. And one of the last projects I was fortunate enough to be working on before I retired, was looking at an urban street, about a kilometer long and, and turning that into a linear Park, that in some blocks would still have some vehicles that would access the properties, but in other blocks, close it right off to two vehicles except emergency and service. And there's so many opportunities like this that cities and towns can be looking at. But it really does take a huge mindset shift in residents and in businesses. And in our people that take care of the the facilities. How do you how do you plow the snow? How do you get the rainwater off of the road? Our planning and our infrastructure were all based around a certain model. And now as we shift into a more ecologically responsible logical model, all of these things are coming up for rethinking. And your mayors are at the intersection of place and people. So super exciting for them to come up with a vision, probably with their constituency, with the residents, and then bring that forward, and how to best implement that. It's really an incredible time here.

Russ Johns 26:55
We are absolutely at a amazing intersection and we all have a choice. I want to make sure to give a shout out to a couple of people in the community here. Reggie Waterman. Hey, I need your BBM number Reggie. Good morning. Great individual that I connected with on a live stream the other night. Kenyatta, you know, Kenyatta, with the opportunity comes responsibility, Michael Hubicki. And then also Gabriel. Gabriel did a live stream, he orchestrated a 24 hour live stream.

Michael Hubicki 27:43
Which I slept through, sorry, Gabriel.

Russ Johns 27:46
Well, I had Saturday night from I don't know, 10 to 1. And we had a great time, we had a great opportunity out there. It was fun. Hats off to you, Gabriel. Thank you. When you recover, we'll catch up, #RussJohns, hello to Michael. And then he also says mayors and city managers have really hard work. And I would have to agree to that. I would have to agree to that. So he asked a question, what has been the toughest obstacle that the majority of these mayors face accomplishing their agenda?

Michael Hubicki 28:27
Great question, Gabriel. It's an obstacle that I faced in my career, as well, being kind of the leader or the coach or the quarterback of a project. And that's to bring everyone into an aligned vision to move forward. So it's a really interesting exploration to talk to people about what's most important to you. But then to balance that with what do we have to do? Yeah, why do we have to spend, or may we spend, and things like that?

Russ Johns 28:58
And then Daniel Hall says Smart Cities are to pop up worldwide. And I have to agree, you know, there's always two sides of every story and we all have to balance. One experience I had was from Rails to Trails. You know, and there's such a battle and a heated argument over Rails to Trails because for those that aren't aware of this, a lot of railways went in early at the turn of the century, last century. And a lot of infrastructure was developed, a lot of easements were created, and the property owners that have this railroad in their back office or their backyard or something along their property lines. When the easement was closed, a lot of them wanted their property back. And the public public domain said, well, this would be better suited for an A trail, or we could actually have some parks, recreation and some of those things. So those types of issues that have become so heated and really fire up the public in a lot of ways. That's some of the things mayors have to navigate through. And, and not every mayor is, I think probably trained for those types of activities. So if you're a mayor, you're city manager, you're somebody in the public domain that needs assistance, now you have a champion in your corner. So get a hold of Michael Hubicki. So how do people get ahold of you?

Michael Hubicki 30:50
www.thrivingmayor.com.

Russ Johns 30:53
thrivingmayor.com

Michael Hubicki 30:54
Or www.michaelhubicki.com.

Russ Johns 30:59
It's amazing to have you on the show, Michael. I appreciate the fact that we were able to get together and hang out. And I just want to encourage everyone, this is a serious note on my behalf, though, is I would love to have you go support my YouTube channel. I'm looking at increasing my attention on my YouTube channel. I'm growing my subscribers, and I would love to have everybody join, go over there, subscribe to the YouTube channel, #RussJohns, it has all of the episodes of the #PirateBroadcast™, it has two minute tips over 600 videos of all kinds of content over there. And I would love the opportunity to have that grow to a channel. YouTube recently changed their policies to where they're going to be putting ads on my videos, regardless of what I decide, or have any availability to manage. So I want to get above 1000. So I can actually get to the partner program to decide what can happen to my channel. So if you can help me out, I would really appreciate it. I think it'd be a good help. So just jump on over there after the show and sign up and subscribe. Appreciate it. Well, Michael, any last words of wisdom, impact that you want to make with the community here? The #PirateBroadcast™ and pirate community?

Michael Hubicki 32:41
Yeah, thank you so much, Russ. This has been an honor to be on with you. When we first met, I was living on the boat. Felt like so at home. You invited me on the #PirateBroadcast™ and said wow. If I could have done it in before Halloween, I would have been on the boat. Yesterday, I uploaded a video to hope fest 360 and I encourage everyone to watch that on New Year's Eve at noon. My hope for 2021 is that we all move from a scarcity mindset to an abundance mindset. And that we care for ourselves, and our families, our community and for our planet. Thank you so much, Russ, it's been really awesome to be here with you.

Russ Johns 33:29
And thank you for everyone that's joined the pirate community, everybody that joined the #PirateBroadcast™. If you're not connected to Michael, please get connected. Reach out, make those conversations happen. Those engagements, the pirate community is wide open to starting conversations, continuing those conversations and supporting the community. So if you're not connected, get connected. All of this information is uploaded and available on RussJohns.com. Go there anytime. And Daniel Hall, Michael Hubicki. Thank you so much. Let's connect, he says so there's already connection there.Subscribed, Russ. Thank you, Daniel. Daniel, we know each other from years past and when I was in Houston, actually used to pipe in professionals on meetings and have people trained on different subjects. It was an awesome adventure. So until next time, everyone, you know, #kindnessiscool, #smilesarefree and you #enjoytheday. Take care, everyone. Don't go away, Michael.

Exit 34:44
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