In Art Of Coaching Podcast, Podcasts

On Episode 8 of the Art Of Coaching podcast I am joined by my long time friend Molly Binetti to talk about being a Pro strength and conditioning coach. If you aren’t familiar with Molly she is the head strength and conditioning coach for the South Carolina Women’s basketball program. Before accepting this position she also worked at University of Louisville and Purdue University.

Molly is straight up on the best coaches I know and the reason I think she separates herself is because of her unparalleled standards of professionalism. Check out this episode to gain some insight from Molly on how to be a pro and put it into practice in your gym, weight room or board room today.

Topics Covered On The Show

  • Molly’s background
  • How the way Molly was raised translated into being a pro coach
  • Taking criticism
  • The social media talk: how do you handle criticism and how do you filter what you share
  • Gaining validation for methods
  • How to have effective self evaluation
  • If you were fired today what is your back up plan
  • Where are coaches not investing enough of their time
  • What is the part of coaching that is over thought
  • What does the term buy in mean
  • What are characteristics of a good coach

Where to connect with Molly


Brett Bartholomew  0:53  

I always feel like after that intro music plays for the podcast that I need to have a guest someday that can break it down into like a hot 16 Or start freestyling. I don’t know if my next guest can do that. But she’s also she is one of the best strength coaches I know. And simply because she’s one of the most professional people I know. And also just a good person. And I think sometimes we miss that. I want to welcome Molly Benetti to the show, coach. Thanks for coming on.


Molly Binetti  1:20  

Right. Thank you for having me. I’m really excited to join you this morning. And I appreciate your time.


Brett Bartholomew  1:25  

Yeah, no doubt, now, Molly, we go way back. And that’s something that probably people listening to this don’t know, would you mind going into your background a little bit? And then, you know, we can kind of collectively go into our short time together. And, what that’s you know, I’m glad that we’ve been able to keep in touch. It’s been awesome. Watching you continue to grow throughout your career. And, you know, you’re in a position now that whenever we talk you, certainly teach me things. But can you give everybody a background? A little bit of a background? 


Molly Binetti  1:50  

Yeah, absolutely. You know, it’s funny, because I never in a million years thought I would be a strength conditioning coach, you know, you talk to a lot of people that get into it, because of either their background as a, you know, collegiate athlete or their love for being in the gym, and all of that. But, you know, I like to say that this kind of fell into my lap a little bit. And, you know, I went into college thinking I was going to be a business major. And, you know, luckily, within my first six months of college, I was introduced to the head strength coach at Marquette and Todd Smith. And he came and did a presentation in one of my classes. And from there, I interviewed him and literally, he opened his doors and said, anytime that I wanted to come in and, and observe or just check things out, I was more than welcome. And honestly, the next morning, it was 5am. I was in that weight room. And honestly, for my four years at Marquette is something that I grew into, and I spend my full four years they’re learning from him and in getting experience, and it’s something that I grew to love. And, you know, I was an athlete, I was never a collegiate athlete, but I knew I loved sports. I always loved helping people. You know, I found myself in leadership roles and found myself, you know, being really good at working with people. And that’s something that I knew that I wanted to do. And then the avenue of Strength Conditioning just kind of came after that. But so I did my undergrad at Marquette. I was fortunate enough, my senior year, I got to go down to Phoenix and work at Exos. And that’s where we met obviously, and, from there, it really opened my eyes to a lot of different realms within the profession, ended up coming back, went to grad school, did an internship while I was in grad school, and kind of throughout this whole process, you know, when I was young I was setting my sights on I wanted to be a division one strength coach. That’s what I wanted to do. A lot of my experiences obviously revolved around that. And I never thought it would happen as early as it did. But my first job out of grad school, I was 23 and got hired at Purdue University and had no real idea what I was doing, I had no idea because they don’t teach you how to coach in school. They teach you how to write programs, and they teach you about how to safely implement exercises, but I got into this job and I had no idea what I was doing, or the other aspects that were involved with it. But honestly from there, it never ceases to amaze me just the opportunities that were presented to me and never thought that it would lead me to where I am. And you know, from Purdue, I went on to the University of Louisville, I spent four years there learning under Tina Marie, one of the best in the profession in terms of her approach and her commitment to bettering our profession. And I was so lucky to be mentored by her and she no doubt set me up for every other opportunity that I will experience in my life. And because of her I’m prepared for anything but within the last six months just took this position at the University of South Carolina working with the women’s basketball team, and so just my journey has continued to evolve a little bit and doors have continued to become open and now I’m here and I’m learning and I’m failing and it’s it’s been a, pretty fun ride so far and I’m just riding the wave.


Brett Bartholomew  4:57  

That’s a good way to put it. You touched on a couple of things that Want to jump on one? I had no idea that you were a business major. Originally, I


Molly Binetti  5:05  

I applied to college and I got into the School of Business. And then within my first month of college, I said, No, this is no. Not what I wanted to do, I knew I, you know, I loved it. And in high school, I was really good at it. I was good at accounting, I was good at with numbers and good with math. And I was like, Yeah, I could do this for a living, I can make some pretty good money. And then I was like, No, I don’t want to sit at a desk for 12 hours a day. And I don’t want to, wear professional clothes every single day. So I actually had no idea what I wanted to do. I knew I switched to health sciences and thought maybe I wanted to be an athletic trainer started observing there. And I quickly realized that is not what I was designed to do. And then fortunately, got introduced to a lot of different professions in one of my freshman year classes and met Todd and honestly, that’s kind of all she wrote. And just, it started from there.


Brett Bartholomew  5:55  

Now, ironically enough, though, would you say, you know, with your experience so far, Would you agree that there’s business aspects interwoven into the performance realm? Meaning how you have to deal with people manage people, you know, so? Well, one, what do you think in that regard? Do you think that looking back, you know, that you’ve seen corollaries there that there’s been tie ins with those two worlds?


Molly Binetti  6:19  

Absolutely. On a lot of different ways. And I think you hit it on the head when you said, just from the organizational standpoint, and the leadership standpoint, and I mean, you tie in so many different aspects, you do have to deal with numbers, you have to deal with budgets, and you have to deal with, you know, staffing and all these things. And there’s definitely carryover. And I think, you know, honestly, one of the most important pieces is just from the organizational standpoint, you don’t really think about that, especially as you’re going through school, as you know, whether it’s an exercise science major, or whatever it is, you don’t really get exposure to those kinds of things. And so it’s not really something you learn until you actually get your hands dirty, and you get in the field, and you realize how many things overlap. But without a doubt, you know, I think my experience is just with some of the classes that I took in, in high school and in college to have helped me. But a lot of that stuff you don’t learn until you just get into it.


Brett Bartholomew  7:14  

Yeah. Without I mean, there’s no, we don’t learn that. There’s no real resource embedded within our field for that either, which is interesting. But I said it at the beginning, I probably didn’t say it very well. But one of the reasons, I think that you’re a phenomenal coach, and there’s two things that always stuck out to me, both in terms of our communication, and just watching you carry yourself. I think that when people are focused on being a good professional, right, like a just a true professional, and when they’re really open to criticism, and I’m not talking about like, hey, the old sandwich technique, right, where I give you praise, and then I tell you something to work on. And then I ended with praise, which I’d advise anybody listening to I mean, research has shown that that is not an effective way to lead manage. It’s funny, because we’re kind of taught that. And I think a lot of people when they get put in leadership roles, it’s something that inherently people gravitate to, but it’s not really effective. But anyway, You were always willing to just accept criticism and not get emotional about it. You know, if when I watched whether it’s Joel, or anybody else, kind of chat with you, or anybody else on the floor, you took it and you took it as just, you know, objective and subjective data in whichever way it was presented. And immediately you saw, like I saw you just digest that and move on. And I think sometimes that’s an interesting distinction. Like, we’re not just the one of the purposes of this podcast, is to showcase coaches as professionals, not just professionals as coaches, because I think our perception in the outside world is a little askew, we just kind of look like gym people who yell and do this and do that. And it’s always irritated me that, you know, people can get on TED Talks and other things like, you know, from other professions, yet our field is kind of like we’re a little rough around the edges from a professionalism standpoint, what are ways that you’ve consciously worked on that and just kind of whether you want to consider it branding, or just how you carry your, basic day to day comportment? Like what is professionalism mean to you? And how do you try to display that in what you do?


Molly Binetti  9:15  

Yeah, that’s, a great point, honestly, um, and that was something I would say is one of my biggest takeaways from my four years at Google. Because I had never seen an organization I had never seen a department I had never seen a staff operate the way in which it did in terms of holding themselves and holding the entire department to such a high standard and how we conduct ourselves and how we evaluate ourselves and how just how we do what we do on a daily basis because a lot of that is not taught. And so before coming to Louisville, I honestly, I think from a, professionalism standpoint, what I learned Up to that point was purely just based on how I was raised and how I was conducted. And I think I know I owe a lot of that to my mom. And prior to getting to Louisville, 


Brett Bartholomew  10:09  

What were those values, what were the like, could you give us examples of when you say how you were raised for anybody that doesn’t have the pleasure of maybe knowing your mom? How, what were some things they instilled in you early that you still really hold Dear?


Molly Binetti  10:21  

Yeah. So, you know, for me, my mom, so my mom raised me as a single parent, my dad passed away when I was really little. And so I was raised by my mom, and I was raised by my grandma. And my grandma raised up a family of eight on her own as well. And my mom raised me on her own. And so I just saw in her the work ethic and the strength that it took to work multiple jobs to give me every opportunity that I could imagine. And just from her, I learned how to treat people, I would say, that’s the biggest takeaway. And the biggest value that I was taught by my family is how you love people and how you treat people how you take them in, and how, I guess how you carry yourself with a little bit of grace. And I’ll say, both my mom and my grandma instilled that in me. And so just learning up, I think, I learned how to work with people, I learned how to treat people, I learned how to be respectful. And just carry myself in a way that, you know, was not arrogant, not conceited at all, but just with the kind of a quiet confidence and just a quiet way of going about my business doing what I needed to do put my head down, treat people with respect. And I think a lot of that, you know, goes a long way and just in terms of how you carry yourself as a professional. So it wasn’t really till I got to Louisville that I learned how to truly act as a professional in our field and what that actually meant and that the bar has been set so low, in terms of what is expected of us and kind of what our job is and what our role is. And like you said, we don’t often get taken seriously. And we have this, there’s this perception that we just know how to lift weights, we just work within these four walls of the weight room. And we don’t really understand people, we don’t really understand how to, you know, do anything other than just lift weights, and we like to yell at people and we’re motivational and all of these things. But when it comes to just the standards in terms of even just having certifications within our field, like none of that is like until recently really become a thing. And so I think


Brett Bartholomew  12:25  

and even those two entities fight, you know, that’s, the tough thing is you look at that, and even entities we’re supposed to look at. And you know, we all get behind because it’s the right thing to do. We have to get behind it. But even seeing the infighting there, and the posturing and all that you just kind of look at that example. And it’s tough, you know, you still realize we have a long way to go. And that’s not to discredit anybody working for those organizations, like the risk that goes in and putting those things together. And the work those organizations do is certainly appreciated. No business is perfect. Even things like Amazon and Apple, Google have warts, but it is tough. It just it’s a microcosm of our field. Right, still very contentious, still very, you know, it goes back to what I said stood out with you, you’ve always accepted criticism real well, where I feel like a lot of people in our field, and I’ve done this as well, you get criticized and you immediately go towards confirmation bias. You say, Well, I did this because blank, it’s like, sometimes just shut up, you know, like, take that listen to people. And it’s definitely a goal of art of coaching, you know, to I look at you as somebody that’s a symbolic gesture of what I know, I want the brand to represent. Like, that’s even why with the logo, there’s nothing performance oriented with it. Because I knew that, you know, when I had the chance to go speak at Microsoft, I wanted that logo to look professional, they’re just like it would in a weight room. I think that we have a responsibility to share our knowledge as well with the outside world because we’re always so humble. And we’re like, Well, you know, we’re going to lead from the or learn from these people, whether they’re CEOs, military leaders, what have you. But people like you have tremendous things to share. Like even just what you said, your dad passed away young, your mom and your grandma raise you like, talent doesn’t really manifest without some kind of trauma. And I think you’re an embodiment of that. And the word you use was perfect. I actually favor the word grace far more than I do. Humility, I think humility gets thrown around far too much in our field and kind of in a proud way. Whereas grace that is a verb that can be used as a verb, and a noun. So as a verb, we honor or credit someone or something by your presence. And I think with what you do you honor your mother, your grandmother, Tina, everybody that’s helped you along the way with how you, your comportment, the way that you carry yourself. And it’s a noun, right? There’s a simple elegance, there’s poise finesse. I think that you hit the nail on the head with that term. It’s such a better term, in my opinion than humility in regards to what is, you know, part of true professionalism. Does that make sense or


Molly Binetti  14:53  

no, no, it absolutely does. It absolutely does.


Brett Bartholomew  14:57  

So when you were a part of Google staff and Tina, you know, I’ve only had the pleasure of meeting her once. But it’s, I think a lot of people understand that she drives a hardship, you know, and she wants to prepare you for the future. And that’s great. I think that we need more of that more. If there’s things that I think people in our field are lacking, I think there’s a sense of personal accountability. A lot of people want to be spoon fed now. I think people being hungry, along with having great communication is important. But I’d be interested to know, how did you deal one? How did she tend to deliver criticism, whether in the form of evaluation or even terms of just putting a foot up your ass if you needed it? And then How have you grown to accept that criticism? Like what are some things that you maybe did younger, like if somebody criticize you or give you feedback that wasn’t comfortable? And how is it different? Now, when you get that, like, how do you reflect upon that?


Molly Binetti  15:49  

No, I’m actually really glad that you asked that. Because my four years at Louisville were probably the most difficult four years of my life up to this point. And without a doubt, I grew more in those four years. And, you know, I had prior, you know, I was 24. When I started there, I probably grew more from 24 to 28, than I did my first 24 years of life. And I mean, I went to work at Google, because I understood that Tina was known to be hard to work for. But I also knew that if I went there and failed, and learn from her that I’d be prepared for whatever it is that I wanted to do. And honestly, my first year, I would say, probably my first year and a half, I was miserable. Because the way that she delivered criticism was it was like a punch in the face. And I deserved it. Because I was young, I thought I was pretty good. And I got there and the way that that department is run is so different from anywhere else that I had ever been. And so it was like walking in and trying to learn Chinese. There’s just a way that everything was done. There’s a language, there was a culture. And I was the first person that they had hired, that hadn’t been there either through an internship, Graduate Assistantship or hadn’t worked there for like eight plus years. And so I came in and I was in way over my head. And I can’t even count the number of times that I failed number of times that I was in Tina’s office in tears, and just, I literally just had to take it on the chin. And every day, like I wanted to quit my first six months, I was like, What am I doing here. But I also knew that if I stuck it out, and I just took it for what it was that I would come out better for it. And honestly, I didn’t take criticism very well at first. Because I’d never been criticized like that. And I hadn’t failed like that before. And usually I’d had pretty good success prior to that. And so it was a really humbling experience. And it forced me to really think about everything that I did and be 10 steps ahead and think about all the little things that you don’t even know existed. So it was rough for a while. But it was really, really cool to see, I guess the evolution of especially mine and teams relationship throughout my four years there, but just the growth of myself as a professional in just the way that I conducted every little single detail of every single day. And, you know, I think I could go on forever, just about my time there. But it was definitely a really difficult process, and I failed more times then I can count and because of that I was so prepared to take on this position at South Carolina. And honestly, like I knew, whenever my time was up at Google, I’d be prepared for, you know, whatever position it was whatever came up, and but like, you know, kind of like we talked about it wasn’t without falling flat on my face several times,


Brett Bartholomew  18:49  

which is okay, I think that criticism is an interesting topic, because there, it keeps us from doing a lot of the things that we normally would do that would add value. And I’ve always said, you know, I think our fields a little bit too focused on proving value as opposed to providing value, you know, and second, and you hit the nail on the head with this earlier, you talked about it, you prove your value by being willing to improve. I’ll say that, again, you prove your value by being willing to improve. Now think about this, the way that athletic or the way strength and conditioning was run by you guys collectively as a staff at the time. Do you think that impacted the way that the rest of the athletic department and even the university as a whole viewed and valued strength and conditioning? Meaning do you think that sense of professionalism helped you guys gain leverage when you needed funding for something or when you needed a little bit more autonomy? Do you think that it impacted that at all? Or did it not matter? And were you guys just an afterthought regardless?


Molly Binetti  19:47  

No. 100% 100%? I’ve never, for one, the athletic department at Google is really unified. It’s a really add together unit but I’ve never seen an administration value, what we do and all their support staff value what we do as much as they did at Louisville. And I know that’s because of the 12 plus years of building that front, you know, kind of from the ground up with Tina leading the way, and whatever it was that we needed, Tina fought tooth and nail for and it was a long, I know, is a long process, but the way that our administration placed value on us was evident by the amount, like the infinite amount of resources that we had, and the amount of the facility that we had the money that was invested into technology, and not just from administration, but from sport coaches and former athletes that would donate and just the support around what we did, you know, they really saw us as an integral piece of everything, you know, in the student athlete experience. And so it was really a neat thing to be a part of, and really see just, and, you know, I only saw it for a few years. And I know that it wasn’t always the case, but to be able to come into it at a time where it was established. And I never had any issues with sport coaches and what we are doing, I never had any issues coming from administration there. They were completely involved in and we were very visible to them as well. And so it was a pretty cool, relationship to experience, but also really cool to see, you know, whatever it is that we wanted, we were going to find a way and administration was gonna find a way for us to get it done.


Brett Bartholomew  21:33  

Yeah, it sounds like they definitely, you guys collectively did an awesome job with that. And we’re gonna dive into where you’re at now, South Carolina, but I think there’s an important point to kind of round off that thought is, you know, when we talk about, because essentially, what you guys did is your internal values, projected an image to the rest of the world, right in some way, shape, or form, whether local, within the University and beyond? Well, that’s branding. And I think that branding, people forget that no matter what we think about the term because we feel our field feels a bit contentious, because we think there’s some people that have been irresponsible with branding. And guess what our fields not unique in that that’s every field. The branding is really the values you live by made real by what you do. And I think that what you discussed, there is an excellent example of that. And that leads into something else I want to ask you, that ties in criticism, branding, projection of values, all those things. You’re active on social media, which can be a rarity. With coaches, I find that there’s a lot of people that dabble, or they’re, just not on it in general. But you’ve always had kind of a focused message, and it’s easy to get on social media can play it safe, and just put stuff out there that everybody’s gonna rally behind, like, oh, you know, athletes, need our love athletes need our trust, like, nobody’s gonna disagree with that. And it’s, in my view, it’s kind of playing it safe. Because it’s lukewarm. It’s yeah, people may feel good about it and like it, but are we challenging anything? Are we creating deeper discussion? I’ve always appreciated like, if somebody Google’s your name, they can pull up a video and see you coach, you know, and, they can see your thoughts on things. And that unwillingness to be scared or deterred by criticism is something that I think is lacking in our field. How do you approach that? How, have you countered any doubts or fears that you had about? Like, I don’t know, do I want to put this out there? Do I want to have any kind of presence? You know, what, kind of moral code do you abide by? Where if you think something’s helpful, you’re gonna share it? Or should I not share? Where do you find that balance for you on being active in social media and sharing? 




Not being scared of the criticism, you know, does that make sense? My answer, am I asking that Okay?


Molly Binetti  23:47  

Yeah, no, you are. that’s a good question. 


Brett Bartholomew  23:51  

And it’s okay to reflect on that. I mean, this is the reality of having an unscripted show, you know, like this. And I, but I think this is where people listen in, and they turn up the volume, because you’re like, I know, somebody you and I both know, and is a great strength coach, I’m not gonna say their name, told me the other day, they’re like, I’ve stayed off social media, because I’ve been scared of criticism for a long time. And I used to kind of go at people that were on social media, and they’re like, now I’m kind of coming around and seeing the value because I think they put something out. And a bunch of coaches reached out and were like, hey, this was really helpful. And that individual didn’t think what they shared was special. But what they realize now is like, okay, maybe it’s alright, to kind of do some criticism, I don’t care if, you know, the performance director somewhere halfway across the world sees this and wants to make a judgement, because I’m showing the reality of what we do and the context as it pertains to this environment. So yeah, just even if you have to stumble or stammer through it, walk me through what you think about that and take your time.


Molly Binetti  24:50  

Yeah, I think I used to be I think in the camp, I would, I used to post a lot more than I do, currently. And I think I’ve just become a lot more selective about when I choose to post something or what I choose to post. And I think, I go on Twitter, and I read more on social media than I do participate in. And I think I like to kind of take note, I guess, of what kind of content is being put out there. And I see still there is a lot of criticism. And that doesn’t bother me at all. Because I think what I’ve learned too, is that there’s 1,000,001 ways to do our jobs and a lot of the banter and some of the criticism out there. And there’s a lot of talk about different exercises and exercise selection and all this stuff. And so you see a lot of people arguing and talking about stuff, that doesn’t matter. And so I guess when I post I, don’t want to post anything about that, I try to I guess, if I’m going to post something, I want it to be something of value in terms of what I believe our roles as coaches are, and talk about a little bit more of the other side of things rather than like what I’m doing with my athletes, because, to be honest, it doesn’t really matter. Because there’s, like I said, a million ways to do it. And I think that’s one of the things I’ve learned the most in the last six months is, honestly, my program. And what I do with my athletes is the last thing I think about on a daily basis. And that’s


Brett Bartholomew  26:19  

which is paradoxical, because you think that the way we are you people would rather have it we’re we’re all doing the same thing you like you, it’s almost as if our field really wants some article to come out or book that tells us all the perfect program, regardless of age, gender, you know, sport, whatever, like would we be? Do you think we’d be happier if we had that? Do you think if there was this, document that just showed us how to do our job and get the best results all the time? Like? Do you not think that would take out the fun and really the skill of coaching? Because now everybody could do it? Now everybody? You know what I mean? Where would the critical thinking come in? I just don’t get it. I don’t get if everybody wants some perfect ratio, or some percentage or certain amount of sprinting volume? Like, am I off on that? Or? I mean, do you think we’d be happier if we had that?


Molly Binetti  27:06  

No, it’s crazy. And it’s, I think it just comes from wanting validation. And I think it gets hard because there’s so much gray area in what we do. And there are so many ways that we can do it that we want validation that okay, somebody else is doing this, or like I’m if I follow this, or at least I can say that somebody else did it and worked for them. So I must be doing the right thing, rather than taking a chance on okay, like, this makes sense in my head. And this makes sense for my population or this team that I’m working with. I mean, I don’t have an answer for it, because I don’t truly understand it. But I mean, it does seem like okay, if somebody wrote an article, or if I wrote an article, this is my program with South Carolina, women’s basketball, this is what we do. These are the exercise. Like, I feel like people, there’d be a pretty good response. And people will get excited about that, which, you know, it is what it is. But I don’t we spend a lot of time arguing about single leger, double legers, who’s ready for what type of progress? I mean, I don’t know, I don’t know. And I think it is what it is. But I don’t, personally understand it. So if I’m going to, if I’m going to put anything out there, I have no problem getting criticized for my program. Because if I can defend it, and if I can explain why it works for our group, then that’s fine. I think people are going to get criticized no matter what they do. Because they don’t fully understand your situation. So I guess when it comes to my approach of social media, I don’t want to waste time and put something out there. That doesn’t necessarily better us better myself, or better our perception, I guess, as professional so I tend to stay more on that side of sharing articles that I feel are really valuable, or, you know, if something happened, you know, light bulb moment happened with our group or something to try to, you know, make note of that and talk about maybe what it was or, I don’t know that I guess I have a true rationale. But I guess I just tried to add value. And I don’t want to also oversaturate my presence on social media, if that makes sense. Because it’s Yeah.


Brett Bartholomew  29:18  

Yeah. Makes sense. Completely.


Molly Binetti  29:21  

That are very active. And that’s great. Because it is a really valuable tool. But I guess for myself, I don’t always feel the need to, to put myself out there.


Brett Bartholomew  29:29  

Yeah, and you got to find the right medium if you do, right, like I know, today, I’m for the last year and a half. I’m far less active on Twitter. What I’ve realized is and this is just my opinion, right? So I don’t mean to offend anybody, but it’s a big boy world and we’ll get offended by things that happens. I don’t think our field knows how to use Twitter and I just don’t think it’s made for coaches. You know, we’re a field that we want to give information but also provide examples. How does a medium that provides 140 characters allow for that? I think that’s manifested we see that even more when people post research articles I want to get into discussions. But again, it’s a medium where we’re seeking more information. But and then we’re forced to put it in 140, you know, give or take plus character buckets, which is further making that information reductionist, which then people argue about, because it’s not specific enough, right? So I remember a while ago, like, I was about done with social media in 2016. And then somebody kind of got on me about Instagram. And I was like, No, I don’t know, seems like that’s for 13 year olds. And this person had worked for Beats by Dre, they had worked for Apple, they had worked for a bunch of other corporations where they were like, you know, I’m going to urge you to kind of give this a second look, you know, why don’t you follow some people that are not in your field and kind of see what they do. And I saw a whole different level of storytelling, I saw people that knew how to communicate to their audience knew how to show examples of their work, and I was like, This is what I’m gonna do, you know, because if I’m gonna get on social media, it’s got to be something where like, it’s not going to be transactional, where people can just digest thing, like, it’s got to have some meat to it. And what I found is your audience will find you. So like, you’re spot on, like criticism is going to happen. One of my favorite quotes, I think it’s by a gentleman named David Brinkley, and I might butcher this a little bit, but it’s a successful person lays a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at them. And I’m like, I love that. So I started just saying, Alright, I’m gonna put things up there things I wish I would have known. And I can show a picture to kind of either convey that message in a more indelible format, or show a pictorial or video graphic representation of what I do. And that’s that, and however anybody feels about it, they feel but at the end of the day, you know, my dad lost his father, who would have been my grandfather, when my dad was only 13, I have, a lot of family that either had struggles with cancer or heart disease, some people might have family die relatively early, and I’ve mentioned this on an earlier episode. So I kind of look at it too, as a way that like, my future, kids will at least get to know a little bit about their dad, and maybe what he was going through or what he was thinking during certain times. Of course, it’s just a snapshot and a time capsule, it’s not like they’re gonna know me or any of us from our social media, or if they necessarily didn’t want to, but it’s something you know, and so I think you have to have a bigger purpose for why you do that, and being scared of criticism, you know, like, that’s got to go by the wayside for the potential value that you share. But what I’d be interested in hearing about now is how you’ve kind of taken those lessons, you know, whether it’s from your early days as a strength coach, whether it’s from the things that have evolved from a managerial side, and what you saw from a professional development side, and how they approach you to Louisville, how have you really taken that and ran with that at your current job, your current location? And, what issues? You know, has it helped with early on? Where have you been able to insert those skills or lessons that have made that transition to South Carolina, a little bit smoother for you?


Molly Binetti  32:51  

Yeah. So, you know, this was, you know, a big reason why this opportunity here was so attractive was it was the ability for me to kind of take everything that I’ve learned up to this point and run with it and make something my own and, you know, you, never fully understand the situation that you’re walking into till you get into it, and you kind of dive headfirst, and you don’t really realize too what skills and what value that you can bring. And so it’s been, you know, I kind of told myself coming into it too, regardless of the situation, you know, I didn’t want to come to South Carolina and just be the women’s basketball strength conditioning coach, like, no doubt, that’s my job. That’s my title. I’m here, first and foremost, to serve our team, and help them achieve whatever it is that they want to achieve. But I also knew that coming here, I wanted to say that when I left here, I did something that hasn’t been done before. And I wanted to add value, not just to our women’s basketball team, but to our entire performance department. And not just our entire performance department, but our entire Athletics Department. And so within the first month or two of me being here, I made it a point to make sure that I was setting up meetings with our senior administrators, I wanted to meet our SWA I wanted to meet people outside of just our team and our facility because it’s different. And at Google, we’re all under one, facility. And here I have my own weight room with our men’s basketball strength coach. And we have two other weight rooms and our staff is really, separated. And I have a boss, I have Billy Anderson’s our performance director, but I don’t see Billy I’ve seen Billy maybe once in the last couple months. And so I’m kind of on my own island in the sense and so for me to be able to figure out where I can add value and for me to really make the impact that I want to I had to go outside of, where I’m at and really try to get to know as many people and be as visible as possible. So I think I’ve learned just the importance of you know, from a professional standpoint and from I think a branding and an imaging standpoint for us to be able to help our department and help kind of create the environment that we want to it’s important to have those conversations and have those meetings with people, you know, in the higher ups and outside of here. So that was kind of my first task was I wanted to make sure that these people knew who I was and that I knew who they were. So we could start that relationship. You know, I’ve been in meetings with the academic side of things and trying to bridge the gap and figure out because we have the number one, I didn’t even know this until I got here, we’re the number one ranked Exercise Science undergraduate program in the country.


Brett Bartholomew  35:26  



Molly Binetti  35:27  

no existing, really no existing relationship between athletics and that department. And so, you know, I got to sit down at lunch with, you know, the head of the undergrad department, one of the top advisors and figure out how can we start to maybe create a pipeline, whether it’s with interns, or whatever it is, how can we start to utilize our resources better, because what I realized quickly was that there’s, you know, it’s, it’s kind of your typical collegiate setting where you have a lot of people in silos and a lot of people that don’t really understand the value, or the resources that they have around them, and how collaboration is kind of the key driver of that. And so that was kind of task number one for me is how can we collaborate? How can I collaborate, even if it’s just within women’s basketball to start, but how can I utilize my resources better, to do not just my job better, but to service our team better. And so I think, learned, just seeing how that was run at Louisville was a big driver and coming here and really wanting to help create a better environment. Because there’s, the resources are endless here. We know, we’re fortunate, we have a great budget, we have all the pieces in place. But you know, I noticed quickly, there’s just some inefficiencies in how things are organized. And so that’s been a big, big focus for me, you know, aside from obviously doing my job really well, in terms of servicing our team, but, you know, I think those are some of the skills that I’ve learned over, you know, that it prepared me for this, and it’s a work in progress, no doubt. But I think that’s how I kind of view, my role is, I want to make sure that when I leave here that there’s a, system that’s in place, or there’s an organization that’s in place that, you know, we’ve got a pretty well oiled machine, and I can say that, okay, I helped create some change in terms of better utilizing our resources and better, you know, servicing our student athletes.


Brett Bartholomew  37:22  

And what role would you say that, you know, when you’re looking at trying to create change, what role would you say, creating some kind of, let’s just call it a challenge network, right? Something where your staff kind of understands, hey, there’s an inherent responsibility within our staff, to not only continuously evaluate what we’re doing, you know, in or from a professional standpoint, not not necessarily looking at training on the floor? Of course, you’re doing that as well. But I think that’s been well covered. And a lot of other podcasts. I don’t know if we need to go over specific monitoring strategies, although I’m happy to go there if you’d like. But what do you guys do to kind of hold each other accountable and say, Hey, here’s some, things that we think natively have worked for South Carolina in our, area for a long time. Here’s things where we seem to be getting comfortable. What kind of permission Do you think people need to challenge, and criticize ideas? And what role does that play in true collaboration? You know, because I think a lot of times people think collaboration is like, oh, let’s get together, let’s, excuse me throw some ideas on a whiteboard. Or it actually might be sitting there and saying, Alright, we’re chasing a future version of ourselves here. Where have we gone astray? And what do we need to do better go? What role do you think creating that kind of network does in creating long term change and that legacy you want to leave?


Molly Binetti  38:34  

I mean, I think that’s huge. And I think that’s something that hasn’t been done enough of is, talking about how we truly evaluate ourselves and our departments and, not just the impact that we’re making, but are we truly effective at what we say we are. And, you know, to be honest, and in my experience, here, I’m still figuring out what that looks like. Because our staff is, very spread out. And we don’t meet on a regular basis, we don’t have a really unified approach to how we evaluate ourselves. And we don’t have a unified approach to I guess, how we do what we do. And so it’s, you know, a blessing and a curse. And it’s a blessing that I can kind of, and I’ve had conversations with some of our other coaches as well about how we are evaluating ourselves and, how we are running, what we do and how we can kind of come at things in a more unified approach. But for right now, I’ve kind of realized that the biggest impact that I can make is trying to use the standards that I hold myself to in terms of how I should be evaluated as a professional and I’ve also I’ve tried to just educate administration, I’ve tried to educate my sport coaches, I’ve tried to educate you know, anybody that I can on a daily basis about how we how I do my job, how we should be evaluated and you know, I had a really good conversation with our SWA the first time that we met because I asked her straight up So how do you feel that we should be evaluated as strengthing conditioning professionals? And you could tell she had never been asked that question before. And so it was an opportunity for me to talk about how I was evaluated at Louisville, how I feel that we should actually be evaluated. And, you know, just have an open dialogue about that and try to create and start some of those dialogues. And from there, it’s kind of spurred some follow ups, you know, within some of our, you know, other administration and just our coaches in general, but I’m trying to start on a smaller scale, but how we can make some immediate changes, on what I do on a daily basis and try to pull along some of our other performance coaches kind of become a more unified front, but, it’s a work in progress, and we don’t have it right now.


Brett Bartholomew  40:49  

Yeah, but I think you’re onto something there. How did you, would you mind sharing some of the ways you were evaluated in Louisville are even some of your ideas and I don’t even care if you consider them half baked or awful, like, throw everything right? Because there’s people listening that they may not even care about, oh, is that foolproof? Could that be objectively measured, they may just want I mean, I think we’re in a field or a spot right now in the field where we just need more ideas, the better because that’s going to drive discussion. And it’s that old idea that if we’re trying to come up with a business now that could really help people. It’s okay, if we have 100 crappy ideas, but let’s come up with a few, you know, I don’t understand that reticence within our field as well, where we feel like everything we say, has got to be perfect, or the answer and that goes back to criticism. Are we that scared to like, feel like, you know, we’re the Emperor without clothes, it’s okay. Like, you know, what are some ideas that you guys came up with, collectively of how you think you can be evaluated? Yeah,


Molly Binetti  41:42  

yeah. So really, we had three big kind of measures that we weren’t buying the first, you know, was number have, we looked at a number of non contact injuries. So obviously, there’s a lot of factors that go into injuries, but we look at, we had over 10 plus years of injury data for each of our teams. And so we’re able to look at trends and we’re able to look at, you know, on a yearly basis, it was just a conversation starter at our yearly evaluation. Okay, how many non contact injuries? Were there on your team? How long on average did it take for them to get back into sport? You know, how many days were they out? How many practices do they miss? How many games do they miss? Like, in a, you know, depending on what those numbers look like, and just spur discussion? Okay, why did we see? Three people tear their hamstrings this year? versus last year? There are zero? Is there something that we can go back and evaluate? And figure out? No, Could I have done something differently? And so it’s just a conversation starter. So we’re looking at injuries, we would look at trends and injuries, how much time was missed. And obviously, multiple people are involved in that process and multiple factors play into it, we can never completely prevent injuries. We know that. But we have to at least look at it. Because if you’re not paying attention to it, how can you figure out where changes can be made? We would look at athlete development over their career. So whether that athlete was with us for two years for four years? What performance metrics were we looking at, for that sport? Are they truly getting better? And how does that relate to their actual on field or on court or whatever, you know, pool performance, you know, and looking at metrics that matter for that sport. And obviously, it’s really easy to make a freshman and sophomore athlete better, you can throw the kitchen sink at them, and they can show improvement, but Are you still seeing improvement their junior and senior year? In certain key metrics? Or are you becoming stagnant? So we would look at, okay, is this athlete actually physically getting better. And then we also looked at wins and losses, because I think a lot of the time, you know, we kind of take it out of our hands and say, you know I can’t make an impact on if the team wins or loses. And I think that’s a bunch of BS. Because there’s a lot of things that we do behind the scenes, there’s a lot of things that we do in terms of being able to impact that. And I think number one kind of goes back to the injuries, if you have your best players healthy and available to play, your chances of winning are going to be a lot greater. So we would look at all three of those things. And obviously, I think we play a part in all three, no doubt. Are we completely responsible for all three? Definitely not but it’s at least a way for us to measure objectively the type of impact that we are contributing to society think those are starters. And you know, I think a lot of it has been okay. Do you have a good relationship with your sport coaches? Are your sport coaches happy? Do they like you? You know, do you get along well, with the support staff, you know, is it a good fit with the team? Like yes, some of those things are important and you have to have those relationships but it’s not really defining or measuring the impact of our presence on that team.


Brett Bartholomew  44:58  

So and look at the present side of things. So you knocked it out of the park with how we can look at it a little bit more objectively from a training side looking at non contact injuries. And I love that you have a decade of data. And I think that could be a book that you probably write a decade of data. So that you’re looking at my father was a stockbroker. And he would always say, you know, if the market and dumps one day, it’s crazy people freak out, they sell everything they want to get out of the market. And he’s like, despite the fact that over centuries worth of data shows that the markets always going to have an uptick. You know, even when you look at recessions, and, the Great Depression and things like that people get too concerned with occurrences and don’t look at trends with a long term kind of non emotional view, you’ve got to see where you’re really at. So it sounds like you guys kill that. Here’s one thing that I think is gonna be interesting, as we continue to try to find ways to objectively and subjectively measure, and I hate this term, when people say, quote, unquote, the soft side, because the art of coaching isn’t a soft side, right? Like behavioral research, psychological research, let’s just call psychosocial and behavioral research in general far predates that of training. So there are ways to objectify leadership effectiveness. I think, what’s interesting in some of the things that I’ve heard people talk about so far, they never consider maybe the athlete or what the research would define as the followers determination of what makes an effective leader, you know, like, we always think Well, is it is some of the things you said, your relationship with the athletic department, the sport coaches, all these things? And yes, it is all those things. But how, would our athletes evaluate us? I think that’s an interesting question. Would they just evaluate who if we went up to some of our more discerning athletes, ones that were critical thinkers? And we said, hey, how would you evaluate me at the end of the year? Is it just getting stronger feeling more fit? Or are there other things that are important to you? Like, what is important? You as a coach? Who are some of the best coaches you’ve had, regardless of whether it’s sport strengthing conditioning, what have you? And why were they affected? But, I think there’s something to be said, for that getting our athletes opinions. And of course, not all of them are, some of them be like, I don’t know, dude, like, and I don’t want to answer your question and leave me alone. Like I have class, you know, but I think it would be interesting to get, I know, I’ve asked some of my athletes that it’s a little bit different, because some of these folks are at different points in their career. And I think, you know, they’re a little bit older. So, you know, what if their fathers and their 26 now and that they’re going to give you far different answers than a younger age, you know, kid that doesn’t have, you know, their responsibilities, and maybe hasn’t been thrust into a leadership role themselves, which is gonna give them a limited view. But do you think there’s room for that? Do you think there’s room for athletes evaluations, on a coach, and even maybe us coming up with ways where we can guide them and how to do that, so we have a better idea of how we are doing in their view? I think some people would throw that out there. But I’d be interested, in your take on that. Is that a dumb idea? 


Molly Binetti  47:52  

No, I don’t think so at all, honestly, we so my first couple years, we used to do kind of an exit interview, or like an exit survey with our seniors, and kind of along is kind of getting at some of the same questions, but more so like our effectiveness at them, you know, from an education standpoint, from a physical side of things we would do, you know, we wanted to get feedback on on their experience as a student athlete, but I think even on a smaller scale, I think that’s a, you know, a yearly evaluation that you can do and, and honestly, it’s something that I do, and I guess to an extent, in terms of, I’m always trying to get athlete feedback in terms of, you know, I want to make sure that I’m providing them with what they need, and not just talking at them, and not just doing what I think is best for them, but actually asking them and involving them in the process. And when I first start with the team, and I did this when I first started here is I have them fill out kind of just a little a few questions on me just trying to get some conversation starters and get to know them a little bit as people, but that’s a question that I actually asked is, I asked them for three qualities of a coach that they really either respect or, you know, name three qualities of a favorite coach that they’ve had. And I tried to ask them and just get some feedback. And as to either how they like to be coached, or, you know, what they look for what really resonates with them. That’s something that I’ve done before. But I absolutely think, you know, we talk a lot, we always want to have kind of the control, right? We want to be the the one in charge, and we want to be the one that’s making the decisions and we know best but at the end of the day, it’s who we’re influencing is the student athletes, and it’s their experience that they have with us. And so, you know, what kind of experience are they having? Is it one where the athlete centred approach where I’m asking them for feedback and I’m asking them for you know, this and that or am I just putting what I want to on them all the time and not asking for feedback and maybe not even truly connecting with them. So I think I’m much more okay with me kind of putting my guard down a little bit and admitting that okay, I don’t know something. And that’s something that I’ve had to do since I started here because we have a brand new team and and there are a lot of times I had to just back off and death. Okay, you know what? I don’t know, I don’t understand you helped me out a little bit and just asking those questions. I think that’s a huge piece of it. It’s got to be it’s got to be an athlete centered approach. Because at the end of the day, yeah, we want our sport coaches to be happy, but the ones that we’re coaching these athletes, and if we’re not,  That’s on us


Brett Bartholomew  50:34  

Yeah, theoretically again, assuming that they could give us the answers that would fit into objective metrics to a degree, but I think that’s a whole nother topic. I don’t think coaching, coaching is already in inherently complex, somewhat ambiguous and rationally, put, you know, it’s not a rational predictive sequence of events. So I don’t think I’ll go on record saying I don’t think coaches fully can be objectively evaluated, I think there’s gonna be a lot of subjected to that you’ve got to embrace that. I mean, look at artists, right. Like there are paintings of absolute their abstract paintings that sell for millions of dollars that most people look at and are like, That’s crap. Like, what is that? You know what I mean? But,so if you look at anything that involves an artistic or creative approach, which problem solving does real world real time, you know, coaching and all that that’s problem solving at its purest, it’s never going to be objectively quantified. There’s no algorithm for human relations that is foolproof all the time, to give us what we want. But I think part of that leadership lie that we’re fed is like, alright, we’re the rational educated ones, we need to find a way to evaluate ourselves, who better to evaluate us than the end user. And there’s a really good article, I think it was done in 2000. And that really talked about the field of leadership studies. They describe it as kind of this theoretically inadequate. They say it’s theoretically adequate, inadequate from its inception, because most Leadership Studies primarily exclude the followers opinions and followers is just a term they use to define those being led. That’s my not my vernacular, that’s what the research will kind of hold to. But it excludes followers, perceptions, or definitions of what they think is effective leadership. And really, it only takes one very influential, or good or powerful follower to do nothing for even the best leadership to fail. I don’t care who you are, as a leader. You know, if Tom Brady decides that he is not on board with Bill, Bella check at some point in time, which I’m sure has happened. That’s conflict resolution. And I know they’ve gotten into it plenty of times, whether it’s about his trainer or what have you. But all it takes is for Brady, or somebody else or a number of people to be fully not on board, and that leader it doesn’t matter what tactics they use. And, you know, we see that all the time certain people work out with certain teams and organizations, certain times they don’t, what better way to showcase how fluid that is, but I just think that we forget about the ones that can probably evaluate us best. Now granted, again, they’ve got to have the education and training to be able to do that, which may or may not be a reality, but it doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be excluded from the process.


Molly Binetti  53:10  

Yeah, yeah, absolutely. You know, you can definitely make that argument. Okay. These are 18 to 22 year olds, how do I know how to evaluate you? But I think if you ask the right questions, and if you truly, I think it goes both ways, if you truly have the effect, or have the relationship with them that you either do or you don’t like they’re going to be able to answer and be able to reflect upon that relationship, honestly. And that’s all you can ask, at the end of the day, there might not be, you know, five objective questions that they have to answer, but like, they’re going to be able to explain their relationship with you. And that’s going to tell you right there, whether or not it was impactful, or whether or not it wasn’t,


Brett Bartholomew  53:48  

yeah, it doesn’t always need to be I mean, my, best friend’s got a his son, I think is five and he’s trying to learn how to play basketball, and he struggles, right, especially compared to some of the other kids that he’s playing with. And the coaches doesn’t have a whole lot of patience for it, my friends describing it, he’s like, I sit and watch his whole practice and like anxiety that my son is just gonna get just derived it. He’s like, I don’t care if he gets criticized, like, I want him to grow, and he needs to be challenged. But like he’s trying, you know, he’s just not the most athletic kid. And one day, he’s like, you know, I don’t want to go to practice and he’s like, you’re gonna practice but why don’t you want to go and he’s like, you know, the coach doesn’t make it fun. I don’t learn, you know, and this is a five year old, right? Like, so sports and practice. And coaching isn’t always going to be fun. Like we’re not preaching some kind of like, everybody gets a metal thing here. But even that five year olds feedback of like, Coach isn’t making learning fun. Like that’s valuable feedback. And so, yeah, for anybody that’s listening is like, well, I train 18 year olds that can’t even make up their mind and what they want to wear that day or forget their socks, like I care less what they think about me. Quit looking for the answer. Just take bread crumbs, take bread crumbs, and see kind of its little bits of data that you collect along the way. That may show you something completely be irrelevant or may give you some good feedback. But either way, you should be getting athlete feedback, I don’t think you should just look at that and be like, it doesn’t matter that’s, that’s a bit silly. Well, you’ve touched on some, awesome points, there are a couple more like kind of rapid fire things I want to throw at you. If you’re comfortable with it, you have the time you got another five minutes. Alright. And these all kind of come from a collective things one my own inherent curiosity two, we get a lot of feedback, people that comment through my Instagram and or email me, but when you when you think about, and nobody likes to think about this, but it is a reality, right? When you think about the way that transitions happen, our career and it’s reality coaches get fired every day. If you were fired today, what’s your backup plan?


Molly Binetti  55:45  

I’ll go back to school. I’ve been playing around with the idea of getting my PhD for the last few years, I think that would, be enough for me to just do it. Yeah, I would


Brett Bartholomew  55:58  

I love it. What did your PhD in


Molly Binetti  55:58  

you know, I’ve gone back and forth a little bit with that, because I do, there’s, you know, I have a huge nerd side of me, and I love the sport science side of things. And, you know, I’ve been lucky to meet a lot of researchers. And, you know, have my hand in research. So part of me is like, yeah, I would love to go back and, you know, do my PhD in sports science. And then part of me is like, no, especially being in collegiate athletics, we need more people in senior leadership positions that understand kind of our world. And so part of me thought maybe organizational leadership, or higher education administration, to be able to be, you know, in a position to help create some of the change that we want to see. So I go back and forth between the two,


Brett Bartholomew  56:39  

I think you’d be great. And that that’s a lot of what I’m doing. working right now, within the research some of the resources that I’m putting out and working on and even looking at maybe doing a professional doctorate, I don’t think I could go back to school and do the PhD, not because I don’t want to, but just being a coach who’s self employed, and you know, I coach during the week I travel on the weekends, there’s not really that option for me to you know, kind of go back to, and the professional doctorate stuff is super interesting, because it allows you to contribute research that’s directly applied to the field. So I’m doing some, work on that now. And I think you’d kill with them and remind me, I’ll shoot you some resources that I think you would find super interesting. And I’d love your feedback on so that’s a great answer. All right, from a professional development standpoint, in your opinion, and so don’t worry about pleasing everybody here. That’s your opinion, where are coaches not investing enough time, meaning like, from what they’re learning or, subjects, they’re overlooking from a professional development standpoint, where a coach is not investing enough of their time? 


Molly Binetti  57:39  

I think it’s twofold. I think, number one, we’re not investing enough time in ourselves as people of our profession. And I think that’s especially true for younger coaches. And that’s something that I’ve had to learn the hard way, I think we validate ourselves a lot through what we do, and we take our work home with us, and we don’t spend enough time developing ourselves. And really, I mean, like, he talked about finding our true identity as a person. And I think that we can suffer because of that. And I think number two is, we spend a lot of time investing in the latest methods and our PR and PRI and all these new techniques and new methods, and we don’t spend enough time investing in learning how to influence behavior.


Brett Bartholomew  58:31  

So you kind of answered my next question, and that you said, we don’t spend enough time looking at how to influence behavior. Obviously, you’re speaking near and dear to my heart there. I think influence is the ultimate like kind of performance pathway because you can optimize engagement or at least enhance engagement, which is going to enhance their training and everything else they go about doing and then just their commitment. But where are you? I think you might have dabbled in so go at me if you already feel like you answered this. Conversely, what do you think is part of the coaching or training process that you think many people overthink at times? And why is that? What are people overthinking within our field?


Molly Binetti  59:09  

I mean, I suffer from this I constantly overthink what I’m actually doing from I still think we argue and go back and forth a lot about like what we’re actually doing with our athletes and not knowing enough about how we’re doing it. Or it’s not so much we’re missing why we’re doing I think we know why we’re doing it, but it’s more so the how, how are we delivering it? How are we organizing it? How are we putting it all together? And I know I’m guilty of this too. I get really caught up sometimes  in the minut details of what I’m actually doing what am I doing each day of the week? Is it too much is not enough? Is it the right sequence? And I think we get caught up in that a lot because there are so many options and so many answers. And so it’s kind of like that, okay, we want validation that this is the right thing.


Brett Bartholomew  59:56  

I love it. I think you hit we got really obssesed with that whole start with why thing, you know, like, it is important, like it’s important to like let people know why you’re doing it. But we’ve really lost our way to a degree with forgetting about the how how you go about implementing something is so critically important. Maybe even more so than the why. I would argue that if you present Oh, go ahead,


Molly Binetti  1:00:20  

What I do, my program is so much more secondary to the how, and I mean, I’ve had to learn that the hard way too. And, but I’ve that’s definitely something that’s been such an eye opener for me starting this position and just see how so much more important than what


Brett Bartholomew  1:00:40  

and I think what’s interesting about that, too, is people immediately could take what you just say, and then they’re like, Well, are you saying that programming is not important? I got that a lot when the minute the book came out. PBN, you know, like you watch me coach,, good bit. And you know that I would nerd out about programming periodization agility as much as anybody. But then the minute I started talking about influence human behavior, organizational strategy, people are like, Well, are you saying that training is not important? And I’m just like, listen, if I say like Mexican food, does that mean, I don’t eat Asian food? You know what I mean? Like, where is it exclusionary to say these things. So alright, the final one, you’ve knocked them out. I appreciate that you don’t bullshit your way through the answers are good, politically respect are correct responses. And this is tricky. I got to think about how I want to phrase this. So it’s not true leading, there’s been a lot of confusion. Well, I shouldn’t say a lot. There’s been a lot of confusion and in a very small subset of individuals, about the word buy in, you know, in my book, I talked about buying as trust. I think it’s synonymous. I think when somebody’s bought in, they trust you they trust the process, they’re committed. What is by and mean to you? Does it mean trust? Does it mean something else? Or what do you what do you think it means?


Molly Binetti  1:01:56  

Yeah, um,


Brett Bartholomew  1:01:59  

and is it a term you use regularly? Like, Do you think it’s a real thing? And you can disagree? Now trust me, I’m that you’re in my good graces for the rest of our life. So I this is a podcast where it’s safe to call bullshit on something you don’t agree with. So feel free to answer as you want.


Molly Binetti  1:02:14  

I think by and exists, I will say, I will start with that I think buy in exists, I think people look at is like, Okay, what, like you’re selling something that they’re buying. And I think you hit it on the head, I do think buy in is a byproduct of trust and belief. And I would say, you know, I would even throw commitment in into what you’re doing. But I think there the trust in you as a person. I think everything else follows from that. And I think because ultimately, you know, now I’m just going to speak from experience here. So I came into a situation where I mean, the walls that were built from these from our athletes were so high, they didn’t let anybody in that. I mean, I came in as an outsider, and I’ve had to fight and claw my way to try to break some of these walls down. And you see that once you start to do that, once you become kind of that consistent presence where you can communicate with them, not just communicate with them, but connect with them. And you show up, you say what you’re going to do. Or you say what you mean, you mean what you say you do what you’re going to say, you do that day in and day out slowly, those walls start to come down a little bit. And that trust starts to build and you see that once that trust starts to build a little bit. You don’t have to start, you don’t have to have the conversations and you don’t have to have the experiences that that you once did. And so I think you see, I think it’s a byproduct. And I think that because of one’s ability to to trust, as in somebody starts to see results. And I think results can come in the form of the relationship that starts to form but also results physical results that they can that are tangible, that they can see that they can feel, I think that in itself is buy in. And I think you know, Biden’s an easy way to kind of declassify it. But at the end of the day, I think buy in just is part of the relationship equation. And I think that’s, the business that we’re in is a business of relationships and the business of trust and influence. And so I think I can see both sides of the equation where like, people don’t like the term buy in. But inherently it’s there. But I think it’s just disguised to in some of those other things. If that makes any sense. I don’t know. But


Brett Bartholomew  1:04:40  

yeah, I mean, it does. I think Dan, what you know, people always want books to read. I think people got me to look at you use the term selling people you got me to Dan Pink got me to look at that term differently. Like when we think selling we and this is interesting case study in and of itself. Why do we assume that when somebody’s selling something that they’re trying to get one over on us? Like what does Marriott Hotels sell? occupancy? I like lodging. Okay. Are they trying to trick us? You know, maybe, I guess, are they trying to trick us into they’re a better option than Sheraton? You know, or are they a better option than someone else? What is what, what is Nissan trying to sell you? Well, a car, okay, well, that’s transportation. Does that mean they’re trying to trick you? Well, the responsibility? Or the answer to that depends on the person doing the selling, you know, like, that’s how you could have a salesman that had is very transparent, easy, gives you all the information you need, boom, done. And that’s become a business model in and of itself, right. You look at things like Carfax you look at, you know, Carvana that take out the middleman all this. Now, of course, if you have some huckster down the road that you know, didn’t wasn’t fortunate enough to be raised by a mother and a grandma with values and things like that, and how they treat people and the grace that you mentioned at the beginning, then that’s another so the point is, is anything, any virtue can become a vise, right? Look at education, education is a form of selling, right, you’re trying to get people to understand the value of a certain idea or the development, like if you go do a PhD people are going to sell you on that. So I think people have to look at selling differently, like the term selling is not a negative term. It’s how you wield any bit of information. So to summarize what you said, Would I be accurate in saying that you think buying is a byproduct of results over rhetoric, right, getting results? Relationships, patience? And what am I missing there? Is there anything else that you’d hit?


Molly Binetti  1:06:35  

No, I think 


Brett Bartholomew  1:06:36  



Molly Binetti  1:06:37  

Yeah, I mean, I think communication is part of as a connection, you know, connection. I think. Patience is a huge part of it. And kind of going back to what you just said, I think selling to just like this negative connotation, right of like, manipulation. And so it’s, but at the end of the day, like you’ve said, we are, at the end of the day, we have to have belief in what we’re doing and who we are as people. And it’s not selling for coming from a place of bad intentions where you’re trying to manipulate people into thinking a certain way or doing a certain thing like no doubt, we are trying to influence behavior, but it’s coming but understanding what our intention is, is that is I think key and I think that’s a separator between like, maybe that negative thought when it comes to buying and selling verse, okay, like we are in the business of changing behavior and influencing behavior, but I think it’s the intention, and I think it’s the way that we do it. Like you think of like, okay, these sleazy salesman letter, you know, telling you what you want to hear to get you to influence, you know, influence your decision. And well, no, it’s not overdoing, does that make sense?


Brett Bartholomew  1:07:48  

Yeah, without it, I mean, listen, anybody that’s got a phone out right now, or, you know, has access to the internet. Google the word manipulate. If you do that, more than likely, the number one definition that comes up as that verb is to handle or control, a tool mechanism, etc. Typically, in a skillful manner, synonyms are to operate to work, I’ll say that, again, manipulate means to handle or control a tool mechanism, etc, typically, in a skillful manner. So why do we even think manipulate is a negative term, you could say, to handle or control and that tool could be communication, our ability to relate to others to do that in a skillful manner. So this is where I challenge all of you guys listening. Don’t take things at face value, in terms of the terminology you see out there, like we were taught to read research, and look at the methods, the subjects, all these things, but then we get hung up on a word like manipulation, manipulate, selling, even if you look at manipulation, the action of manipulating something in a skillful manner. And so I think that like, you know, just challenging ourselves in these assumptions, and, you know, we’re looking at this stuff, as is it’s a negative thing, you know, you look at selling, okay, the definition is to persuade someone on the merits of blank, that could be a, you know, the work of Tchaikovsky like they say, and in the Google definition I’m looking at now that could be on the merits of education, why somebody should go do an internship, you’re selling them on that idea, you’re communicating something, there’s a principle of you’re trying to get across the value and say, Hey, this is worth your money, or this is in exchange for your resource, like a time to me is the most valuable resource. So that would be the challenge. I leave everybody with my I think you nailed everything. We’re probably I think you were maybe the ninth or 10th episode I’ve recorded. And I think that this is something that is going to be a staple. If I continue to do this and whether I do or not, it’s going to depend on the feedback of the listener. So guys, if you’re listening, please put some honest reviews, criticisms, things like that up there. Let me know if you’re enjoying it but even if I’m 300 episodes deep, I think that this is going to be one of the foremost episodes that people listen to again and again, like I’m Wow. So thank you so much for your time.


Molly Binetti  1:10:10  

Thank you, Brett. I appreciate it. Obviously, I’ve appreciated you for a long time, but you continue to better our field and better me as a person, but I appreciate you having me on.


Brett Bartholomew  1:10:21  

Oh, it’s my pleasure. If people want to get a hold of you, what are two ways that are the predominant or easiest or more efficient ways while still providing you know, professional boundaries? For you? What’s the best way to get a hold of you?


Molly Binetti  1:10:33  

Yeah, I’ll be on I’m really bad at answering emails sometimes. But I would say, I will give my email. It is


Brett Bartholomew  1:10:47  

I’ll put it in the show notes for everybody listening. So don’t worry about spelling or anything


Molly Binetti  1:10:51  

like and then I would say social media would be the second one most likely Twitter. You can find me at Coach Binetti. From there, honestly, I prefer to speak via phone, whether it’s text or phone call. So from there, you know, if you’re looking to get a hold of me, I’m happy to give out my number. But I’ll save that for maybe the few that want to chat.


Brett Bartholomew  1:11:11  

Yeah, I’m the same way. It’s, so antiquated with how well I just viewed as a more personal efficient way, like when you get on the phone that will say this to anybody. Here’s a hint. This is a development hit from a professionalism standpoint. And Molly did it perfect. A lot of times coaches, there are certain things coaches don’t check. Like I never checked my Facebook messages. I just don’t you know, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, it’s all too much you’ve got a funnel that there are coaches out there. And this is a huge tip if you’re a young coach listening, that are not going to give out their information directly, but it is out there and whether or not they respond to you is going to be dependent on your level of perspicacity or shrewdness to find that information yourself. Because what I mean is this 30 40 100 People will reach out to people on social media Instagram, whatever and demand an answer, I demand an answer, like, you’re accessible to me now I need it, I need it. But there are certain coaches that are like, you know, what the people I want to have conversations with are the ones that are shrewd enough to find my direct email or anything because it’s on my LinkedIn or it’s on my professional website, or it’s on this. So do some research. Don’t expect to be spoon fed. That’s something I’m going to continually harp on and challenge on. I don’t care how tired of it anybody gets. respect people’s time, do your due diligence before you reach out to coach Binetti check out her work, you’re gonna get more out of the discussion when you do. It’s gonna save her from having to repeat things and you from having to kind of stumble around things that she’s maybe already talked about in depth. Do your research, be respectful, be professional, and thanks for your time. Molly, thank you again. I hope you have a good rest of the day


Molly Binetti  1:12:45  

Thank you, Brett you too take care

  • Kevin Devine

    Could you go more in depth about your opinion on the One Minute Manager style of criticizing? Criticize sandwiched between praising. Why you do not use it and what you think works better? I am fairly new to having a leadership role with work and trying to get better at talking with my co-workers.


    Love the podcast!

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