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Hearst President and CEO Steve Swartz on Helming a 132 Year-Old, Family-Owned Media Powerhouse

KindredCast: Insights From Dealmakers & Thought Leaders

44:30 min | 2 years ago

Hearst President and CEO Steve Swartz on Helming a 132 Year-Old, Family-Owned Media Powerhouse

"Hi. I'm Viva Ramani. And welcome to episode fifty four of kindred cast a biweekly podcast featuring insights from dealmakers and thought leaders from the world of tech media, and everything in between kindred cast is a production of kindred media, powered by lion Trie on today's show. Steve swertz, the president and CEO of Hearst corporation, sits with lion. Tree CO are able or cough to discuss his unique perspectives at the helm of the hundred thirty two year old family run media powerhouse conversation ranges from Hearst, prescient move into business media, and services to swertz, his well, regarded personal style, which she describes as IBM salesman. Circa, nineteen sixty tune into here how Steve and his colleagues are writing the next chapter of this multi generational juggernaut. It is my pleasure to be sitting here with the president and CEO of the Hearst corporation. Mr. Stephen source, thank you very much for being here. Thanks for having me. It is one hundred thirty year history hearse has grown to own conic print and digital brands like bizarre. L cosmopolitan, the San Francisco, Chronicle and more. They also have steaks and Amy ESPN and owned companies in the business information sector like Fitch Ratings was Steve at its two thousand thirteen and in senior positions for decades prior Hearst, which starred as a newspaper business now trousers, all areas of media, finance and business. Steve has one of the more unique executive this in the world as a leader of a very influential mass media company that controls acids of legacy and new media as well. Leading business information conglomerate and doing it as a private company. Steve, welcome. Thank you for being here with us on Kidger cast, thank you hearses one of those companies that I've talked internally about being. Model like it'd be so bold for how to really build a proper family. Run business. Let me just say that. I hope you and I can get together. When we celebrate the hundred and thirty second birthday of Lyon, tree. Thank you very much. If we get to the thirty second birthday lines of you happy to start. You know, we're only seven years in the making so far, but Hearst is a unique company. So tell me why, or how it is to work at a private family owned business. That's generational nature. I think every company is unique in their own way. I think some of the things that said as part I mean, we are a hundred and thirty two years old. We had a very dynamic founder William Randolph Hearst to was constantly challenging the business side to look for the next thing that made sense in the context of a media company, you know, here's someone who was born fabulously wealthy, because his father was one of the most successful miners in the great gold and silver, rush. Senator George Hearst. So he didn't really even have to work, but he went right into the newspaper business because he wanted to make a difference. He bought afternoon newspapers because he wanted to serve. The common man, and that the working man's paper was the afternoon paper, but he pushed us into magazines. He pushed us into radio before he died. He lived a very long life. He bought one of the first television stations and nineteen forty eight so he established our culture at our place of pushing beyond your comfort zone to look for new areas of growth and innovation. And then we had another icon, ick leader, my predecessor Frank Vanik ran the company for almost thirty years, and he pushed us much more into broadcast television and into cable television and got us going in what we call business media, which are companies like fetch. And so, yes, we're privately held we're actually owned by trust. The fact is, they're both management trustees and family trustees that trustees tend to be lifetime appointments. So we have people who keep a long relationship with the company it reinforces, the culture, reinforces the history, I think all of that. Makes it a relatively unique place to work, but there's something about the culture or maybe the charter, or even the trustees that encourage hurston the company and yourself as chief executive to put more money into the company for growth and innovation and not just to manage the assets of old. I really think it starts with the founder and I think that again, because we've had this trustee system, the keeps executives and family members with a long direct relationship with the company, I think that's how these things get passed on, and they don't get lost one of the shame of public companies, people reach a certain age. And then they're out there not only out as CEO or chairman, but they go off the board. One of the things that I think, helps us is that we just have this history that we're supposed to keep pushing we're not just building the company for today's colleagues and today's dividend recipients, but for future colleagues future dividend recipients, and that's just been passed on. I think it's in our DNA when I became CEO, I didn't have to change anything that was already in the culture, and of course, Frank still right down. The hall is our executive vice chairman make ensure that I don't screw things up hardly. But not. Only did you know the mandate when he became executive. But you also knew that the part of the role is to innovate is to change is to diversify the business again. A new business lines which you've done beautifully somewhat say her may not even be described as a media company. I mean, how would you describe? I will we like to think of ourselves as entertainment information and services company, but I would argue that a hundred and thirty two years ago, we were the same thing because when William Randolph Hurst, persuaded his father to let him take over a newspaper that his father, owned as part of a wide diverse holdings of Senator Hearst, the San Francisco Examiner in eighteen eighty seven I would argue at that time and still to some degree today that newspaper, particularly back then was a principal source of entertainment, a principal source of information and provided all kinds of services to the community hundred and thirty two years later. Would argue that we are obviously entertainment through. Yes. PIN through the history and lifetime channels principally in our local stations information. Yes, is still news, but has also morphed over time into financial credit information through Fitch aviation and information through a company called camp that we own fabulous company, and then the services have become more software services camp as an aviation data and software company, we have a couple of medical software company. So I would argue that while the actual execution elements have evolved. We've stayed in three broad areas of entertainment information, and services because one of the reasons why actually start doing this podcast is because of the storytelling opportunity around this industry, and really not only where we're going, but where we've come from, and that's why. By looking forward to this conversation with Steve because you have a sense of media, and information services is not being a static concept, but where we came from and where we're going very much still in growth mode, and innovation mode. And that is a hallmark for the industry. Most times these are public companies and very hard to transition into these new models, as a public company Bentley, when you have a traditional beat ABI business, which is media in most cases now to beat ac- to consumer business, also very difficult the skill set. So everyone says, I wish I was just a private company doing this, but you have the luxury of doing so there's a give you a different way of taking risk of being bold, as a private family, controlled business versus being public whichever wanna Republic ever is a long time. We have no current need or plans to be public one of the great things about our portfolio. Is it generates a very significant amount of free cash that allows us to keep invest? Sting in the kind of businesses that we want invest in without going to the public markets for equity capital and actually using very little debt as well. So, I think, though that it's not so much public versus private. It's a legacy and its credibility. So whether we were public or private, we would not have been able to pull off the expansion that we had over the last several years into more and more business data medical data or business or medical software. If we hadn't had a legacy of doing that which came out of trade publishing, so you go back forty or fifty years through various acquisitions. I don't think trade publishing was ever a top of mind strategy for the company, but through various acquisitions, we got some trade publications some of which we still publish we still publish Lor covering weekly. And if you wanna know what? That's about the name says it all, but it's still a profitable industry publication. So we continue to do that. But back forty fifty years ago, we were publishing magazines called American druggist. We republishing magazine called motor, which was for people who repair cars for living, fortunately, for us, the publishers of those to trade magazines, again, forty fifty years ago decided that as good or better business would be to be collecting data in their industry. And of course, at the time they had the publish this date in big books, because there was no internet, but American druggist spawned, a company called first databank, which we own one hundred percent of, and it is the largest source in this country of drug dosing information, drug interaction information that is relied on by hospitals and pharmacies across this country. And in some other countries that came out of American druggist motor more from a magazine about how to fix cars into a database as to how to fix cars and repair times and, and repair cost estimates. And is now a fabulous data business that is put together. I think it's in the realm of twenty seven or twenty eight straight years of revenue and profit growth, so we did more aggressively decide Frank Bennett, and I when I was fortunate enough to become his chief operating officer in two thousand eleven we jointly decided with the tremendous support of our board, and particularly our chairman will Hearst to push more aggressively into business data and business off wear, and since that decision we've made nine billion dollars of backwards issues in that area alone, including, including Fitch, we own a smaller piece of fish, we now one hundred percent. A fish and what is forever one's audience and sort of a rating agency component kids, one of the global ratings agencies clearly along with SNP and Moody's and Fitch itself has a long history. And I think Paul Taylor and his team are CEO there do a fabulous job, and it's global rating agency and then it has other non raidings financial information product. So it is a large global financial data provider. Now when you say ratings obviously, this is not media ratings. No, you're talking about bond rating. Right. But the debt markets and the financial markets, so you start off as a Wall Street Journal. Reporter, I believe way back when take us through how that skill set and being very well read gives you the qualifications to be overseeing this conglomerate and building this company. Most of us have had any success in life. And if it from just having head great mentors in from the time I joined the Wall Street Journal, I got to work with such giants in the businesses. Norm perlstein and James b Stewart who writes a famous column now for the New York Times. And I think that what you learn as a financial journalist, is how to analyze things you have to some things up quickly. You have to master a number of different industries. So I was fortunate enough to both cover Wall Street than I was an editor on the front page desk, and then you had work on Cynthia. Sizing these big stories that could've come from the farm bureau's or the Washington bureau. So I think it was at still a very young age. Still in my twenties, a great learning experience. And then when I hit expressed to my bosses at the time a long-term desire to be on the business when a chance the Wall Street Journal, and her started talking about publishing the financial magazine. They said to me, my bosses at the journal so, well, this would be a good opportunity for you on Choubey our lead Representative on this project, and that led to the push into the business, interestingly enough that project, which was called thus mart money magazine, which we brought out in nineteen ninety one I think Hearst person that was put on that project. David carey. And he did a fabulous podcast with you, and David went on to run our magazine division in a fabulous way. And we've been good personal and business friends over since. Now, his graduated to becoming a student at Harvard. Now he is on the Harvard campus and advanced leadership program, and I have a son, who's on the Harvard campus as sophomore great from journalists to business person, and then obviously in chief executive senior executive Hertz corporation along the way. What could you point to for your ascendancy, that was an accolade, or sort of a bold Beth that you've made that got everyone's attention saying, well, this person really could lead this company. I don't know that it was anyone thing. And I think most of aside from the way you dress. The. Look, a lot of things in live his lock in being in the right place at the right time as long as you're working hard and trying hard and, you know, I think smart money, the fact that smart money ended up being a successful launch with myself, as the launch editor in David as the launch publisher. I think another thing that actually kinda helped me in an odd way, David decided after we were up and running a couple years to move on. And he joined nother fabulous media company at Conde nast when he moved on Frank Bennett, who has been my principal mentor in life. And I've been very fortunate in that Frank said to me, would you be interested in taking over David's business, I'd responsibilities, and I guess I was around thirty one at the time and I very much was so that was my first time with that. I was fully on the business, and it was really a lucky turn of events both the David decided to move on. And that Frank decided to give me a chance while it's worked very well. And now as the CEO, would you say that the most innovative moves that you've made or the boldest move may have been in the businesses area way from media? I think the biggest decision that Frank and myself and our board med was to push harder in to what we call business media, which is the Fitch and the medical and the transportation data off where businesses because I think it was relatively clear back, then this was early two thousand eleven that the entire consumer media sector some of which were still growing at a rapid rate. Certainly ESPN was knocking the cover off the ball and an e was blowing through their numbers every year PA positively. Yes. But I think it was clear what we were seeing happening with newspapers getting disrupted by technology and magazines getting disrupted by technology and yellow pages. Getting disrupt that the same thing was inevitably going to happen to the television business. Maybe not as dramatically because television, is it self digital business, but was going to happen. Something was going to happen to the model and we were getting at that time, roughly ninety percent of our profits from consumer media. So we decided in our board and our management team. It really is in many respects, like a partnership at Hearst of all of various division heads, and senior executives and our board, and certainly Frank. We decided that let's push more aggressively into an area that was already working for a so we had the credibility. We just weren't as big as we felt we needed to be. And now in two thousand nineteen we expect almost forty percent of our profits to come from these e to be businesses. Meanwhile, what we thought would happen has happened, not in a dramatic way. But clearly we're seeing some changes in the business model of. Television that has not in any way. Made it a bad business. It is still a very good business, but it's growth pattern has clearly been altered by the changing technology and media landscape. Could you give us a sense of speaking out, how big hurston, what the diversification, as well as a private company, we reserve, the right not to talk about our profits? We did about eleven and a half billion dollars of revenue and we run at a very respectable margin and about forty percent of that you'd think is you said as businesses in two thousand eighteen it was thirty three percent of our profits came from the business media. It's business media sits tend to have a higher margin. So they're not as big a percentage of our revenue. But of our profits thirty three and because our business media portfolio is growing at a double digit clip while the consumer media side. Is not growing anywhere near that fast. This year we think it'll be about forty percent of our profits. And obviously, if those patterns continue, and we're pragmatist so we don't know. But obviously, we will move and I think we would be in better shape, if we move more toward a fifty fifty balance or even just given the prevailing climate north of fifty fifty in favor of the BBC stuff. So this is what I'm really impressed with, because we all love the media business, and obviously, you have your tentacles, a lot of places in that business, and that's been a legacy part of the company, but to really plot out a diversified model that gives you hand growth and business diversification. The same time, I think if I could be bold is the beginning of your legacy the long way to go. We both fans of writer. David brooks. I've been studying his concept, even off the New York Times up ED's of what he calls his second mountain. We this is a personal development, but even from a business perspective. We all climb. Our first mountain, we've spoken about it a lot, which you reach your core competency, hopefully around our age groups and then you start to hit a valley of thought about what you really wanna be in the future versus where you came from. And that valley is a very self-aware process of what the business looks like and where you wanna go, and then you start climbing your second mountain, which is kind of a scary place to be because not where you came from. But it could be a very joyful productive exuberant experience because it's really taking on a new chapter. Once you have a purpose about that, then it can be transcended. That's how I think about you. But how you're working with hurston transforming the business in your direction? Well, first of all, David Brooks is fabulous and perhaps the best columnist writing today, and like you on excited to hear about his new book, and to read it at hers. I've already read it. Area. You're nothing if not flunked doesn't surprise me at all. I think that it hurts. At least it really is a partnership. I don't look at this as in any way my legacy, again, we're building on William Randolph Hearst, did. And Frank bin ich did, and he still with it. We still have this fabulous group of trustees who are both some retired members of senior management who are still very actively involved, some daily, we're just very blessed all of the divisions of hers, whether it would be Jordan were LeBron Hearst television are thirty three stations or David. And now Troy young running magazines Mark all them who's now our chief operating officer at the corporation, but he ran newspapers for many years. Now. Jeff Johnson neared Kim Lonnie who helps us oversee our entertained before we just have fabulous group of folks, Paul Taylor at Fitch or can great camper. We just have a fabulous group. Of really CEO's of their own business eve, Burton Burton, our chief, legal officer and matures CFL, I'm going to leave somebody out some purpose about this. But, you know, we just have a fabulous group of folks in its collective partnership again. We got a great board. Very supportive will Hearst in the hers family. So it's a collective and really what we've done is really a continuum that starts with the founder. So we're just building off of that to some respects in it. See David Brooks thing on YouTube, so I guess I'm a little familiar to some degree. I think what he could also be talking about, is what people do outside of work, and we all work most of the time. But obviously, there's also can be another leg that doesn't necessarily have to interfere with what you're doing businesswise. But, you know making more of giving back more of a philanthropic commitment, more of the civic commitment. And there again, you know, working at hers, that's just. Baked into the DNA. We are all expected. We've got David carry now up at Harvard in this advanced program, trying to learn more about the not for profit sector that will influence what he does either in his business life or in his private life going forward. Certainly, many of our trustees will is very Finland. Thraw bec- Frank Bennett spin on the New York Presbyterian hospital board for forty years and has served as its chairman served as chairman Lincoln center. So we learned that Franken regard because the chairman of the center, yet for Germany into the center, so trying to follow in his footsteps, there's well and, and, you know, work on things like Lincoln center. I'm also pleased to be on the board at New York Presbyterian, a very a privilege to be on that Boorda, chairman of the Associated Press. So some of that is what one does to make a contribution in areas that are not directly, but can be related to what you. Do in the workplace for sure. I want to talk about the area of partnerships because Hurst has been known over long time with one very notable example, which we're going to bring up of being just a phenomenal partner, contributing partner investor, but one that's very easy to work with, and obviously very productive to work alongside and these referred to ESPN. So Hearst for longtime at a twenty percent owners reviews peon in partnership with Disney, which has been the majority holder, take us through how that came to be, and why that parts of it works so beautifully relation with Disney overall. Well, yeah, I mean we're just so fortunate to be tied. Disney is innovating on so many levels when you're thinking about the great CEO's in general, or particularly great CEO's in the media business. You've gotta start with Bob Eiger. So the history of it is hurston ABC, when it was a stand alone company back in. The early eighties Leonard Goldensohn the phenomenal men who build ABC and Frank Bennett came together and decided to have television partnership, that would aim at this new thing called cable television and out of that partnership came the lifetime channels, and eventually the history channel Leonard also bought for ABC ESPN, then capital cities, the fabulous team of Murphy, and Burke with Warren Buffett as their biggest shareholder came in and quired ABC. So our partner became cap cities ABC during that time twenty percent of ESPN that was not owned by cap cities ABC came up for sale that twenty percent had been owned by the RJR, Nabisco company, and after the famous takeover by KTAR that spawned the book and movie barbarians at the gate. They decided that they needed to sell down some non-core assets to pay down dead. And so they put their twenty percent and Frank and his colleagues at the time acquired that twenty percent aided by the fact that there was a comfort level at cap cities, that we would be a good twenty percent holder to their eighty. I know they regret not actually buying it themselves. But we benefited from that, and then in the mid nineties, Disney acquired cap cities, and they have been our partner ever since and the relationship is really fabulous. And it's really across a huge swath of our media portfolio. So clearly Disney owns and controls ESPN. They own eighty percent. We own twenty percent. We like to think that we're very supportive and been good board members. But they're calling the shots and Jimmy Petar the relatively new head of ESPN is just doing phenomenal job. He fifty fifty we and Disney own. On eighty history in lifetime and some of their other channels together, and we have a relatively new CEO there. Paul Bucci hairy who once against just doing a phenomenal job running any, and then we own fifteen ABC affiliate television station. So we're really all in, in the television business as a partner of Disney, you look at what Bob has done, first of all, you know, realizing I think before just about anybody did that cable had carried the game for a long time. And while cable wasn't going away. New growth needed to be put in place and Bob position. Disney to have that new growth from blockbuster brands and his acquisitions of Star Wars, and marvel and picks are just totally put them in place for a new era of growth, and certainly inspired us for us. We couldn't go into the movie business. William Randolph Hearst had tried that decided that wasn't for us and move. Moved on. But for us that new Lega growth was business media, I was very inspired by what Bob had done at Disney. And now he's positioning Disney as the leader in going direct to consumer with the great brands and we're already benefiting. Yes. Bien pluses, off to a great start as a relatively new streaming brand. So we couldn't have a better or more important partner than Disney. Yeah. But that partial continues to evolve mean the eighty twenty partnership peon that's clear. They call the shots your reporter and you probably obviously very involved in what's happening even though Disney's and. A fifty fifty partnership is not easy because usually a fifty one forty nine or someone has to call their shot, but fifty fifty you coming together making decisions together is wherever an issue like who has a hand when there's a I mean it's really been great over many decades. This is one of those partnerships where the contract never comes out of the drawer. We've always been able to jointly make decisions and keep things going. And any has just had phenomenal growth over the last thirty years. What do you think now that the Disney FOX deal is closing or just closed, or set the close, depending on, when we actually released this podcast? It's a obviously very much imminent that is now going to be a content drug or not with direct consumer offering and getting bigger and bigger in his own. Right. How does that change your with Disney? And is there some sense of the partnership is kind of left behind, or will that ultimately be part of that whole contents? Edgy. Well, I can't speak for Bob or Kevin mayor or any of our great partners there. They'll have to and do a great job of laying out their own strategy. All I can say about it, and he is it, it's a big company. It's a significant company on its own. It's a significant part of our significant part of Disney's earning. So you can't imagine anything of that size and quality. I mean right now, and he has pretty much any way you slice it three networks in the top twenty so they don't think you get everything in terms of an e being left behind as significant s but we are in a scale moment for media. Right. Which is evidenced by the Disney FOX deal eight to two Time Warner. Comcast sky other notable examples as well. Do you get concerned about being subscale orders? You're partial Disney, make you feel more comfortable. You're either to one of the scale players, but we'll see. I mean, obviously, as you say the landscape keeps changing I wouldn't single any outlook every. Media business regardless of its size is evaluating change and trying to figure out what the future is. And it's hard to say if you wanna look out five ten years, where we'll be where the traditional bundle will be where new bundles will be how big affect your will streaming be what will be the relative consumption patterns traditional brands, versus more, Netflix, or Amazon, of course, Disney will now control fabulous, Brandon Hulu. And so I just think for all consumer media brands what the future holds is hard to predict, but all I'll say about an e is three channels in the top twenty I feel pretty good about the top twenty on the cable dial. Yeah, but how do you think about from direct consumer perspective, but we'll have to see, I mean, I think everything in the direct to consumer world is relatively nascent except for Amazon, and if you other players, so, yeah, Netflix, of course. So we'll see. Yeah. And broader topic on technology mean technology has to be brought into any businesses days, not just about the consumer video places even software companies and business services and even this podcast. Right. This is a new technology, even though it sounds like an old technology and the audio business. Your first podcast, I'm happy to be welcoming you into the new frontier here, but tell me about how Hearst, incorporates technology know-how in partnerships United together, the Microsoft CEO summit. So I know that you're in the game and involved, but how do you think about as a business leader? Well, obviously, there are many layers of technology. I think what we're most excited about is what we think, is the dawning of phenomenal new age of productivity across businesses across the world in, you know, much is been written. Professor Gordon wrote the seminal book about how what has happened in the modern era. Has not produced the same level of dramatic leaps in productivity, as we had with the dawning of electricity. Refrigeration aviation would have you kind of thing that so far, the digital revolution of the streaming revolution or whatever kind of hasn't really produced that level of change. And there's been a lot written about Larry Summers in particular about a level of stagnation, and the economy. I think, though that we're on the cost with artificial intelligence machine learning opportunities for automation. I think we're on the cusp of a great leap in productivity, and we're excited about it, and trying to use it across every Hearst business mostly from the notion that armed with insights pattern recognition in what have you from the computational power? That's out there today. That no individual has the time or resources to do. I just think our folks across the creative side, the business. I defined scan be making better decisions, and I think that's going to be pushed across so a big focus for us that Mark all the Marci fop rating officer is leading is just to make sure that we are integrating machine learning. And there aspects of artificial intelligence in every business operation using fabulous off the shelf, tools, hiring, some fabulous, statea, scientists, and mathematicians. And what have you to make sure that we're constantly trying to take our data put it into better forms, and then run some learning against it and make better decisions, so projecting or speaking for our audience here, and listen to you talk, you sound like a very sophisticated Stewart of capital and business executive, but there's also a very funny. And warm and inspirational side to Steve sports, because I know that side of you and you could let it out a little bit here. It's safe because we do share with each other are year and letters that we send up to our people, and I'm grateful that you haven't trusted me to read your and get a sense of your leadership style. And I appreciate your taking a look at mine, and giving me your feedback as well. But give me a sense of how you lead. It's a big company obviously, you have company of a deep bench, you have Frank as inspirational executive vice chair and leader, but really, it's kind of a lonely job. So leadership is really there to serve the people and the company and you do a great job of that. And I saw that really through, you're writing your letter. So what does your style who I, I love the concept of any annual letter because hopefully our colleagues benefit from it because we're relatively diversified company. And we want them to have a full appreciation of everything that's going on the opportunities the challenges, and where each of our may. Divisions is headed your letter is notable for a lot of business insight, but you also have book recommendations, which takes it, one step farther than mine, or even Warren Buffett's. And I think all of us are inspired by Warren's letters. I've read them all and commend anybody who hasn't read them, all they are phenomenal forty plus years of business history. And maybe going on fifty years of business history and insight and wisdom. And it's just amazing to read them. So I think many of us who write letters, Jamie Dimon, of course, rights phenomena letter are inspired by Warren, and his ladder riding at that, Microsoft, comatose able to tell war, and, and then typical and he immediately turned around and recommended two or three letters that I should read that I hadn't read before just a fabulous. That was a great time to warn we got to go to Bill, Gates's house and see the library and in, you know, Saudi and the Dow's doing such a fabulous job running Microsoft. So that was. Great to be able to be that conference leadership. I think today not just for Hearst. But for most businesses is about collaboration. It's about working through differences to come up with a shared vision. Everybody's going to have different perspectives. Not all of our senior team gonna gre- on everything, but getting people comfortable, and with a path, and working through and building consensus for it working with our management team. Our trustees are bored. I think it's a lot about that. And I think things like an annual letter can add clarity because it's a very fast moving world and sometimes you gotta step back at Hearst. I think, again, we're fortunate that whoever is in the ios spot is supported by group, trustees and board members and again, fabulous senior folks, and I said, I know it leaves somebody out, but did wanna mention you know, rich Malik who are executive vice president for business media Willie was integral to. Building that portfolio that we have of businesses today. So tell something interesting about Stephen Schwartz. Most people don't know. Well, interesting is a loaded word, and what do you do for fun? I love to read loved to read history. I think the one volume biography of Churchill that came out that the New York Times pushed hard is just really. I mean what a life what an amazing lie that rob. Andrew Roberts, just phenomenal. And like to be current and reading about policy in thinking, and you've recommended the trilogy the sapiens and. To home dad. So those are great by the Israeli he's fabulous. And so I've read all of those I like to read a lot, I like to watch a lot of ESPN. My wife says, you know, I hope you don't think this is actually counts. His business sitting there watching, you know, basketball game or football game and lacrosse games and travel or your wife likes travel. My wife is always planning something, and thank goodness because we get to see the world to her, and then finally, I'm trying to learn how to play golf, I think after a year and a half of lessons, making a little bit of progress. It's great because it concentrates the mind, there's a little ball, sitting on a nice piece of grass. The ball doesn't move and it's just so confounding the inability to hit it squarely is quite a challenge, but making progress my one recommendation for you on that topic of golf is, I would suggest you pick a ping pong. Instead, it's a lot, more efficient fifteen minutes, you're done you can go back home. Go back to your office, and you get the same kind of rush to say this about pink pie. I was a good ping pong player when I was a kid, we had a table in our basement, and a sister who was two years younger, and she would got invited to all the parties when we were in high school, and I wouldn't. So I would be in the basement playing with another guy who didn't get invited to the parties either we got very good at ping pong, but I had a humbling experience. And I think all of us do as we get older, and particularly as our kids get older ones, almost twenty one and one's about to turn seventeen and they became such great ping pong players. I taught them to play. And now I don't think they'll play with me, and if they would I wouldn't enjoy it, so we have much retired after seeing how far you can play it into your older ages. I pride ourselves that we have a ping pong table here in the office from day one, and even as grown, we've kept it in a flushed out all the best ping pong players media because they come over here to play some with a change of clothes because they're so. Serious about it. And they're so good at it that they come in, and they wanna make sure they don't get to work up. Steve. I appreciate your being here finished with us on the book that you're reading today that we should all take advice from, I'm reading so many at the same time right now and what I've really been trying to do. I'm reading about two or three all in the realm of machine learning or artificial intelligence, and I can't for the life of me. Remember the names of any of the three but I think all of this needs to really educate ourselves in that area and be on the cutting edge. And, you know, one last anecdote from the Churchill book, he wasn't just a visionary in terms of where he saw the menace of Hitler and Nazism. He was incredibly knowledgeable about the technology of the day. He had this quirky professor, who would come. Visit him all the time and make sure that he was totally current on military technology. Aviation technology. So when he took over he really was ready to lead the British war effort. I'm trying to learn from that all of his can learn from that none of us is innate -ly as knowledgeable 's, we should be about these areas, but we all have to both read as much as we can, but also find the people either inside our company or outside who really know about this, and make sure we're constantly talking this through because I think the implications are very great indeed side note, because you're gonna talk about golf, all the things are interested in, but really from my perspective where you thrive is in your style, and how you dress and I have that whenever I got up in the morning knowing on a C you it changes the way that I dress because I feel like after Brandt because they're one of the more impeccably-dressed executives out, not the fed anyone else out there. But you just adopt above. Well, let me just respond to that by saying since people can't see the two of us on this podcast as I sit here. I am in my usual uniform, which is kind. Kind of IBM salesman. Circa, nineteen sixty I have a navy blue suit on a white shirt, a blue tie and black high socks. I'm looking over there a bore cough, who looked like he just stepped out of a plug one of our publications Esquire. I mean, there is a subtle check shirt, there's a striped tie that goes exactly what the colors of the check. There's a very interesting, shall we say, I know he spent some time in London. There's a very British looking kind of cardigan and the sued has a lot of subtle texture to it. I mean this man is really well dressed, and he knows it. So the last time area came and visited Hearst he was as turned out as he is today, and he insisted that we take a picture. So my sister took a picture. And then area had the picture framed and he sent it to the house, and we're not sure who did it may have been one of the boys may been somebody's who here's a picture. So in our family room, we have pictures of all of our family members, you know, the kids cousins, nephews nieces, whatever and one day, I'm looking at it with my wife and we're both looking. We says, how did bore cough getting our family collection? So there is the picture of area at me right in the middle of the sports family election. So that just for me underscores the ubiquity of area, bore cough, he is truly these elig of modern New York life. Live ratio, many ways to cover a client, and this is one of our. Coach. Well, I'm glad that were on audio and not being visualized. We look nothing like the way. Okay. Well, thank you for being with us on kindred cast. And I look forward to the continuing to learn from you and our collaboration. And watching you thrive both in giving back as well as in your sheep executive rollovers. Well, thank you area agree, pleasure. Thank you very much. I hope you enjoyed our show today. If you wanna check out any prior episodes, you can find us on apple podcasts, Spotify or wherever, you listen feel free to leave a review there. As it helps people find the show. You can also follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook at kindred cast for behind the scenes photos, and info, keep listening and see you next time. Shen.

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