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Pascal Guyon

Episode 6: Create a Mind Map, with Pascal Guyon

Pascal Guyon is a creative powerhouse. He is an award winning and multi-platinum musician and producer. He has contributed to three Grammy nominations and was shortlisted for a Latin Grammy. He is a world renowned artist mentoring expert. Pascal has been a mixing engineer for live shows since age 17 and was invited to play on stage with the #1 salsa band in Cuba at 20.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • Pascal’s background and how he got into music
  • Why organization is difficult for most artists and what Pascal does differently to help artists become organized
  • The mentoring program that Pascal uses to help create a mind map with his clients
  • What the mentoring mind map program looks like
  • How artists can find a balance creating art and putting it out there
  • How Pascal weaves time management into this mentorship
  • What Pascal is most proud of with his system
  • Why it’s so important to have a mentor and how to get mentor
  • What’s next for Pascal

Ways to contact Pascal:

Welcome to System Execution, the strategy and system behind today’s successful companies. Systems can make or break your company, but here, we’ll solve your physical, technological, and psychological systems issues by connecting you with experts that have succeeded in overcoming those challenges in their own business, and providing you the guidelines and tools you need to implement those same strategies for immediate results. Now, here’s your host, Vera Fischer.

Vera: Welcome to System Execution, a podcast devoted to using processes, and systems, to drive to a better outcome for your business. I’m Vera Fischer, your host.  All businesses, no matter the size, relies on systems. Some of these are physical systems, such as a factory. Some are technological, like project management software, while others are psychological systems, such as checklists, and organizational charts. Many of these systems will overlap in your business.

Today’s guest, Pascal Guyon, will be discussing a system that has contributed to his success. I am thrilled to have Pascal on the show today. You see, Pascal is a creative powerhouse. Pascal is an award-winning and multi-platinum musician and producer. He has contributed to three Grammy nominations and he has been short-listed for a Latin Grammy with Cuban legend, Alfredo de la Fe.

Among Pascal’s unique achievements, he has been a mixing engineer for live shows since the age of 17, and he was also invited to play, on stage, with the number one salsa band in Cuba, at the age of 20. Welcome to System Execution, Pascal.

Pascal: Hello. Thank you for having me. Great to be here.

Vera: Pascal, I’ve given System Execution listeners a brief glimpse into your background so take a few minutes and tell us more about you, your experience, and then we’ll talk about the particular system you would like to share with us.

Pascal: Absolutely. Basically, my parents saw very quickly that I have a strong love for music because, when I was 3 years old, they were seeing me putting the radio on and building my little orchestra with my little toys and trying to imitate what was going on on the radio. They were like, “Okay there’s something going on here.” Basically, they put me to get some lessons and I didn’t take it really seriously until I was about 16 years old. Then I became very, very hungry to learn a lot of things, so I learned a lot. I studied like crazy, different styles of music. I actually became a piano teacher. I was teaching jazz and classical when I was 19 already. I took with a lot of bands, figured out that actually I preferred to create.

I’m a very organized person so sometimes actually the art business has been a little bit tricky for me because I like things to be organized, to be straight, and things to be done. I have a business mind kind of and I like things to be really, really, really straight, so sometimes it’s been a challenging business for me, but this is actually why I moved to work in a specific way that fits me that is very organized, and actually teach artists this side because very often artists are actually a little bit lost in their creative flow and forget that actually they should be able to run a business. So this is what I’m here to have them doing basically.

Vera: That sounds really exciting. Pascal tell me how did you come to realize that you really wanted to work with other creatives, artists, musicians, to really help them in short get organized. How did you really get to that?

Pascal: Actually, yeah. I figured that I was like, this is weird because I wish everybody was … I have this mindset because you achieve so much more. The biggest problem with artists is that they don’t have … they cannot affect like … the other part of the brain that is like sleeping for some reason, so I’m trying to switch that part of the brain on so that they wake up and they actually learn a specific way, a step-by-step path so that they can achieve their goals finally because they really want to achieve something but they actually don’t know how.

So after seeing so many people struggling with that, actually most artists, and after realizing that actually, when I look at my track record, people are like, “Oh my God. How do you manage to achieve all these things?” Which are like very, very different things and all the way to the technology business. How do you do that? So it made all the sense in the world to me to build something that can teach them really precisely how they can achieve that kind of stuff.

Vera: Okay. So let’s get started. I can’t wait to hear about this. So what is it specifically that you teach them to get started?

Pascal: Basically I built a mentoring program that helps artists create a mind map. I basically … yeah, as I was saying … I like to say that my life is a mind map so for anybody struggling with how to achieve their goal, I actually teach them how to build their own mind map, basically. So we go through each of the modules I created but every minute, every five minutes, we look at the mind map and we’re like, “Okay. Now we talked about that. Include this in the mind map.” And this is a way for me to be sure that they really understand what we are doing because, you know, they can always tell me, oh, they don’t know what to do, or something like that. And I’m like, “You cannot tell me you don’t know what to do,” because it’s actually written. We are building it. It’s written on the mind map. And you can always go back to the mind map because this is being done to put you back on track.

Vera: So you help your clients create a mind map, is this your own system that … the mind map?

Pascal: Yes.

Vera: Okay.

Pascal: Absolutely.

Vera: So tell me again the name of your mentoring and mind map program.

Pascal: Well this is just called Pascal Guyon Mentoring Program for Artists. I called it the leading  artists because, once again, most artists … even painters, or whoever creative, they love to paint, but unfortunately very often the rest of the world is not aware of what they do even if they are amazing because they never actually put their mind in the business side. But people are really actually amazed by how you can achieve with just a few tricks, so these few tricks … of course everything is listed step-by-step in the mind maps I show them that we are creating step-by-step.

Vera: So with your mentoring system that helps your clients create a mind map, how long does it take to go through your system? Is this based on the number of … how quickly they do the different steps, or is it a set time?

Pascal: So basically what I offer them is that it’s kind of an eight-hours program, but this is one hour per week for over eight weeks. Because we talk for an hour, I export them to new concepts, ideas, things to look at, but they have also homework to do. They have assignments. So once the hour is done, it’s like they are having “Ah!” moments. They are realizing things like when we’re talking and they’re like, “Oh. Really? Oh, okay, so now I can go back and, okay, I need to think about that and I need to figure out, okay, what to do about it, or what things I should focus on specifically.”

So I’m kind of showing them possibilities and then they have to think about it and be like, “Okay. I thought about it, and about this, I want to focus on these things specifically and this alone to create a mind map basically.”

Vera: So, Pascal, how long have you had this system in place?

Pascal: Well actually, it’s funny because I had this system in place for me I think since 10 or 15 years. I didn’t put it on paper, but I’ve always been working this way in my mind. You know, I think it depends on people. Once again, most artists don’t really have this mind set, but, to me, I think this is how I manage to always get to the next level, or manage to get this new opportunity, and now, working for the Hyperloop, it’s like I’ve always had a routine, basically a way to approach people, to function with them, and that really triggers these opportunities and things to happen.

So it took me a few years to be like, “Okay. Let’s actually put that on paper.” And, of course, now this can be taught to a lot of people because most artists absolutely need that.

Vera: They absolutely do. They’re very much in the creative process and I think that for any artist it’s very difficult to put yourself out there, because your art is such a personal expression. So how do you separate that side of your heart from the side that needs to let people know that it is there and that it is really great.

Pascal: Right. Well, actually, it’s not really a struggle for me. I like to say that it’s all about really knowing yourself and once you’re comfortable with yourself, I don’t think it should be a problem to actually show it to the world. I often talk about spending a lot of time with yourself. A lot of people actually are afraid of that and, you know, this is why dating is so hard, because people don’t want to be by themselves, but actually being by yourself allow yourself to know what you want, what you are about, and to be extremely confident about that.

So I’m really big on that. I think it’s really, really important nowadays, and I actually certainly talk about that in the mentoring program as well. It’s absolutely key, especially for an artist when you’re trained to … you have a message … there’s something very special about you, so you need to pinpoint what it is, and so, yeah, spend time with yourself and you’ll figure it out. And then you should be quite confident about exploiting that to the world basically.

Vera: Exactly. So, Pascal, you had also mentioned a couple … maybe a moment ago, that you took a couple of years to write the system down, or to really think about it. Is there any part of that process if you will that you tried it out and it didn’t work and you had to go back and say, “Wait. That’s not working,” from a mentoring perspective?

Pascal: Right. There’s a few things. I was thinking actually about, you know, any softwares … that kind of software often have a time management … a feature … and I think it might be actually the software I use, so a specific software that I like because it’s very simple and it gets the job done quickly. But there’s a time management where you can track if the task is done, how far you are in the task, and I just feel that that task in particular is not very useful. This feature in this software is not that great. So actually I probably have to look at other softwares to actually track where you are in the task, or where I am in the task, and to basically use that in a more efficient way.

Vera: Interesting. And how do your creative mentees … how do they respond to the idea of time management?

Pascal: Well, actually time management or even the other role, it’s kind of critical because, as I said, we do one hour per week over eight weeks and we do need to figure things out for the next week basically. So even if, you know, they brainstorm for a week, they might not have completely figured out what they need to, but to have a deadline, I think it’s huge. And I think it’s huge for most people actually, because you know that, okay, “I really need this thing to be done to get to the next thing, and if I want to achieve my overall goal, I absolutely need this to be done.” So it’s a big push, I think especially for artists. It’s a really big push for them to get things done so it’s all great. They actually really appreciate that you know.

Vera: How many do you work with at any given time?

Pascal: Well usually … it’s actually quite random because, you know, the mentoring is just one part of what I do because the rest of the time I’m constantly busy producing the albums. Sometimes I’m just producing music for them. Sometimes I’m producing and I’m mentoring them. Sometimes I’m just mentoring them. So it really depends, but I work with hundreds of people. It’s pretty crazy.

Vera: I want to hear the one part of this that you’re the most proud of.

Pascal: I think it’s actually the quality of the breakdown of the process. I love to figure out stuff. It’s something that makes me really happy, to really understand how something works. This is something I did for many things in my life I’m passionate about. It can be a food recipe, it can be how function the stock market, but I’m good at breaking down things and finding the steps, the clear steps, so that, okay, it’s very clear. You just follow the steps and you get where you want.

So I think it’s really the quality of the breakdown that makes it easy to understand for any random person actually.

Vera: Would you mind sharing with our listeners maybe one of those steps?

Pascal: Absolutely. I could, for example, I could talk about … you know, at some point we talk, okay, how to get a mentor. I think it’s key for anybody to have mentors, [inaudible 00:15:38] a mentoring program, but you can have like 10, 20 mentors over your life. So we talk about how to get a mentor, for example.

I’m always talking about my friend, Sabrina, the most incredible business woman I’ve ever met. She was a billionaire by 30 years old, and she always talk about her mentors, still to this day. So when I meet an artist and I was like, “Okay. So who were your mentors?” Or, “Who are your mentors?” Or, “Who are you looking at to be your mentors?” And very often, you know, she says like, “I don’t know.” So I tell them about Sabrina, like, you know, “If people like that have mentors, I think you should have mentors.”

Then we talk about, how do you get a mentor, because very often these people are extremely busy, very hard to get to. So a trick I tell them, for example, is like, instead of trying to contact them and acting desperate, or like really needy, the key is actually to provide value. Value that can potentially help that person actually in their business or whatever they’re doing. So, suddenly, that potential mentor is going to look at you and be like, “Ah. That’s interesting. I’m going to answer to this person and maybe we can do something together.” And that changes the whole dynamic completely, and this is really a great way to get to busy people, very successful people. It works really well.

Vera: Wow, that is a great perspective. In the 25, almost 30 years of being in this marketing and advertising business, wow, I have not heard that perspective. That’s good. That’s really good. Really good.

So let’s talk about what’s next for you. I’d love to hear what your projects are and what the next set of goals are.

Pascal: Sure. Well, specifically on the mentoring program and creating a mind map, of course I could automate it. I have to say I really like to run it one-on-one because I think everybody is very specific but, you know, if you want to scale any business, of course you have to automate as much as you can. So I think at some point I will look at this. I think the trickiest part is going to be to actually track … we were talking about tracking and time management and where people are in their evolution through the mentoring program … I think this is going to be the trickiest part. But this is something I’m definitely looking at.

Other than that, I’m working on a lot of other projects, like the Hyperloop transportation technologies company, so it’s pretty crazy stuff. Producing a lot of albums, and the list goes on and on.

Vera: Wow. You are busy. Very busy.

Well, Pascal, I really want to thank you for sharing how to create a mind map in art businesses. You’ve really shown us that systems actually have a place and are very useful in the creative arena no matter what creative you are producing, and you’ve definitely given us a great nuance of your program that will get our listeners really excited.

Before we go, let’s close out our discussion today with any final advice you want to share, if there’s some creatives listening. Anything we’ve missed. And then tell us the best way that our listeners can connect with you.

Pascal: Okay. So my main website is theriseproduction.com so they can find pretty much everything there. The exact mentoring program, how to apply to it. They also can contact us for production, produce their EPs, albums.

I’m all about really quality of life and it’s funny because, you know, sometimes I actually get some hate because I have high expectancy, or high standards, and I think it goes for everything in life to me, you know, so it goes through quality of food, quality of like working out, quality of the people you hang with. So I’m always pushing people to be questioning themselves. Do they have the right environment to actually go to the next step? And it goes through all that. What do you eat? How do you sleep? Who are the five people you hang with? So I just want people to think about that and try to improve that, you know.

Vera: That’s awesome. That is so great, and I couldn’t agree with you more. It’s a complete package. It’s not just one thing. You have to look at the whole.

Pascal: Yes. Absolutely.

Vera: Well, System Execution fans, no matter how many notes you took or how often you re-listen to this episode, the key is you must know that every successful business uses systems to drive to a better outcome.

Pascal: I want to thank you so much for sharing your expertise and insight to our listeners today.

Pascal: Thank you very much.

We hope you found this episode of System Execution enlightening. For free examples, case studies, ebooks, and more, be sure to visit systemexecution.com/resources. Contribute to the conversation by reaching out to Vera directly on email at vera@systemexecution.com.

Until our next episode, thank you for the privilege of your time.

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