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Building Better Men with Jim Shapiro | Podcast Episode 008

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About This Episode - 

Jim Shapiro has spent his lifetime building men.  Far more than an award winning head coach or successful business owner, Jim has found a calling in his career.  IMPACT Players Executive Director Warren Mainard spends time talking to Jim about what it takes to build successful men on the field and in life.

Jim Shapiro currently serves as head football coach at King's Senior High School and is the co-founder of The Better Fundraising Company. You can reach out to Jim via email at [email protected] or on Twitter @JimShapiro.

To find out more about IMPACT Players, visit www.impactplayers.org.

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Show Notes -

Transcript - 

Warren Mainard: Hello and welcome to the IMPACT Players Podcast. My name is Warren Mainard. I'm the Executive Director of IMPACT Players, an organization here in the greater Seattle area that is focused on inspiring men to be great husbands, fathers, and leaders. And with me today is in one sense, an old friend, and in another sense, a new friend, Jim Shapiro. Jim, welcome to the show and thank you so much for taking time out of your schedule.

Jim Shapiro: Right on, Warren. Yeah. Good to be here. Thanks for, inviting me around the table. Appreciate it.

Warren Mainard: Now, as I kind of alluded to the fact that we have an old connection, but very much a new friendship in that both of us attended King's Elementary School, middle school, and high school. For me, I was there until 1992 and moved halfway through my sophomore year. And you were a few years ahead of me and so I knew of you by reputation. You were kind of, as a eighth grader looking at those juniors and seniors wishing I could be as cool as a guy like Shapiro. So we have that connection through King's. I have so many fond memories of my time at King's High School. Ultimately, the Lord led me across the country to Florida to finish my high school career. But tell us a little bit about your background with King's and how that's really played a pretty unique, ongoing storyline in your history.

Jim Shapiro: Yeah, that's great, Warren. Yeah, we're both, King's guys. As you said, you left and I was there. And actually my story, I actually was a public school kid all the way elementary, junior high. I went to Arrowhead Elementary and Kenmore. I went to Kenmore Junior High. And transferred into King's actually my sophomore year. So you and I were playing a little tag team there, as...

Warren Mainard: Interesting.

Jim Shapiro: ...as we were there together. But I mean, really the long story short is I loved my public school experience, had great friends and had great memories in that experience. But as I got older, my friends started making choices that I knew I would have to be making as well socially. And I realized I needed a space and a place where I could maybe just be directed in a more positive way. And King's is that. It's a non-denominational Christian school, rooted in some amazing people that had gone before us. And for me, King's is that platform where I transferred my sophomore year, that I found an environment where I could just grow and flourish in my faith, grow and flourish academically, athletically. It was just a great, a great space. So I don't knock the public school system, although King's for me was exactly the system I needed. The place I needed, the people that I needed to kind of springboard again, my faith and my journey as a young man. So, we could tell stories after stories about King's, but I'll just say it was mostly the people, the teachers, the young men and women that I was able to hang out with my early years. I tell my current football team, by the way, I'm the King's football coach, 28 years there now. I haven't really left that place since, since graduating. But I tell my players, you got to surround yourself with dream givers, not dream stealers. And I was able to surround myself with dream givers, people that were going to speak into my dreams. And, I guess, you got this guy today, 49 years old, having looked back over that foundation was really critical for me.

Warren Mainard: Fantastic. You know, and both of us are men of faith and we'll talk about that a little bit. It is interesting to see how God works to accomplish similar purposes in taking a totally different path. For me, I had to leave King's Christian School for my faith to really become real and personal for me. And then for you, that was the step that you needed for you to kind of grow into the man that you've become. And really for me, that's kind of what the theme for our conversation today is really about. It's about building better men. And as you mentioned, you've been a head football coach at King's Christian School for many years now, going into your 28th season, 25th as the head football coach. And you and I have talked about this before, that for you, the role of being a coach is really about investing in the next generation of young men. But before we get into that, I wonder, as you talked about that dream giver idea, who was critical in building Jim Shapiro as a young man entering into adulthood?

Jim Shapiro: Yeah. I think we look at our society and hear often how important men are in the lives of boys as they grow up. Ideally, a father in the home, if not maybe an uncle, a grandpa, a coach, a youth pastor. There is something about a young man needing someone who's been before them to kind of teach, train, show. It's very biblical, very relational. I think great societies are built on that. So I really have three; one would be my dad. Someday I'm going to write a book that's going to be 'Shoe Salesman to CEO.' He was a shoe salesman early on. In fact, his dad was a shoe salesman his entire life. And my dad, long story short, as he matured and grew in his workspace, became the CEO of Windermere Real Estate, which is a pretty well known real estate company here in the Pacific Northwest and now throughout the region. But it wasn't the business side of things that I say he shaped me. It was what he did at home. And I tell this story all the time about my dad. He would come home after a busy day. He would be in his suit and tie, come home through the front door, and he wouldn't come in as an angry, grumpy dad who just spent a long day at the office. He would go back into his room, I think he probably took a deep breath. He'd get out of his suit and tie, and he'd come and he would engage the family in a real way. And the thing I remember as a kid was my mom was working. She was cooking, making dinner. And my dad always did the dishes every time after dinner. There was no request. There was no ask for my mom. He was just what I would call a 'servant warrior.' He was leading from the front. He was serving from the front. And he played a really important role. So as a young man, I'm watching that. So he shaped me just in how to be a good husband, how to be a good leader, leading by example. My next would be a pastor by the name of Pastor Ken Hutchison, who's no longer with us. But Pastor Ken, was a pastor at Antioch Bible Church. And, he was a leader from the front. He shows me, he showed me what it means to take ground on behalf of what is good. He was bold. He was bold in his faith, bold in his life. He played football for the Seahawks and the Dallas Cowboys a big, strong black man that would preach it from the front. But he also too, lived out his convictions and lived, what he believed. So I was able to sit at his feet for about 15 years at Antioch and learned what it meant to be a man of faith that was willing to fight for what was right and biblical. And then the third, I could tell day long stories about all these guys, but the third would be Frosty Westering, my head football coach at Pacific Lutheran University. And if you were to Google the name Frosty Westering, you would see that he's in, I think, the top 10 or 11 of all time winning his football coaches ever in college football history. A name you might not ever know. But just like my dad, it wasn't about the business. Just like, Pastor Ken, it wasn't about being a pastor. Just like with Frosty, it wasn't about being a winning coach. It was a thing he taught us on how to win. And, it was really about winning in life. And, I'll just, I'll leave it at this - most coaches motivate through fear. If you don't do something and I make you pushups, if you don't do something, I'm going to yell at you. Frosty motivated through love. And he included tough love. He was a he was an ex-Marine, and there was a lot of tough nature that came out of him. But he motivated a bunch of young men to eventually go win a national championship. And it wasn't about the trophies, and it wasn't about the rings. My senior year, when we won that national championship, it was the way in which he did it. He turned boys into men. He helped us grow up. So all three of those guys, shaped and and formedwho I am today. And really have taught me what I'm teaching others.

Warren Mainard: Yeah. And I, I am familiar with Frosty. I'm of course familiar with Hutch, and it's so cool to see the legacy that he's leaving behind. Jim, I'm coming off of a weekend where I led a group of fathers and sons together through some adventure type experiences, repelling, rock climbing, river rafting, and just filled with a lot of gratitude for the dads out there that are really trying to pour into their sons and trying to make that impact in their lives and remind them of who they are and who God has called them to be. And it's exciting to hear that your dad had that kind of an influence in your life as well, that he was both successful in the workplace, but more importantly, successful in the relationships that matter most as a husband, as a dad, as a member of the community. So kudos to your dad for raising an IMPACT Player like you. Tell me a little bit about your football journey. So you mentioned you played at King's. Went on to, what did you say? Azusa?

Jim Shapiro: I did. Yeah, for two seasons. Yep.

Warren Mainard: So, yeah, tell me a little bit about that journey.

Jim Shapiro: Well, that journey starts with a soccer player with really long hair down to here. And King's needed a kicker my junior year of high school. So I grew up playing soccer, actually played in Europe for a summer with Cliff McGrath at SPU, took a youth group over the, youth of players over there. I mean, I was a soccer guy...

Warren Mainard: Yeah.

Jim Shapiro: ...since the age of five. And I played a little bit of football in junior high, Kenmore junior high, but really just hadn't caught the, caught the passion for it. Until my junior year, the team needed a kicker. And so there, I showed up in my Diadoras, in my soccer shoes, and I go out and start kicking the ball. And I was relatively fast. And so eventually by the end of that season, I was kicking, I was playing receiver, playing defensive back, and just fell in love with the game. And so I was a kind of a late bloomer when it comes to playing football. Had some success there, senior year, All state on the, on three sides of the ball. And just kind of found myself really wanting to pursue it at the next level. So yeah, I attended Azusa Pacific University, and there's a whole story behind that. I love Azusa as an institution and school, the Lord really had me go there specifically to meet my wife 'cause I had a really bad football experience. I love the guys that were there. In fact, I'm still friends with guys that were there. But the experience for me, the coaching style for me, was what I explained a minute ago. It was based on fear, at least for me. There were guys there, coaches there that were ex-NFL guys, that were brought up a certain way and they would motivate through fear. By the way, there was a sidebar there. I learned quickly there's a difference between being a Christian who coaches and being a Christian coach, which we could apply anywhere. In our, like there could be someone who's a Christian in the workspace and being a Christ follower in the workspace. What I mean is, I'm confident that my coaches down Azusa, knew God and were Christians, but they kind of left some of that on the, in the locker room. And then they came out to the field and would do certain things or say certain things I didn't think really is how Christ would do it. I go to PLU, and again, I find Frosty, motivation through love, motivation through tough love, really engaging people on a relationship level. So that was my experience from Azusa to PLU. But yeah, I played two years out of Azusa Pacific. Met my wife to be, we got married a few years later. Made some, met some great friends, but transferred to PLU and played football there my junior year. And then, as I mentioned, senior year, blessed to have won a national championship with a bunch of amazing men. So pretty, pretty crazy football journey. Which, since I started football so late, meaning high school and just caught fire with it in college, I'm like, what do I do after? And I often thought I might be a youth pastor, but then the Lord really had me go into business and do some things there, which maybe we'll talk about. But, I found football to be my space where I could help boys become men. On the theme that we're talking about today, Warren, our theme right now at King's High School is building champions. That comes first. Building champions while we pursue championships. We put the trophies and the winning secondary and the building of champions first.

Warren Mainard: Wow. That's awesome. Let's dive into that in just a minute. But before we do, again I love hearing the similarities and overlaps in our story. I also played college tennis and met my future wife in college as well. So we're going, we're coming up on year 24. We'll be celebrating in August. Tell us a little bit about your marriage and...

Jim Shapiro: Yeah.

Warren Mainard: ...and the family that's been birthed out of that.

Jim Shapiro: Yeah.

Warren Mainard: And how has maybe some of the lessons that you learned on the football field or just being mentored by some of those great men, how has that maybe impacted the way that you go about being a husband, being a dad in day-to-day life?

Jim Shapiro: That's good. Yeah. I'm a few years ahead of you. We were married in 1994, so I got you by a few years. My daughter's 25, married; she's made me a grandpa twice already. So I have a three year old and a one year old granddaughter and son; 22 year old son who's a senior down at Biola University hopes to become a doctor someday and maybe go back to the mission field and use his skills there. And then we have 11 year old, Macayan, who's our pride and joy. We were involved in the foster care system for a long time, had 24 different kiddos come through our home, and we're done. We retired and beat. And, the Lord wasn't done yet. We adopted Macayan, actually brought him home when he was six weeks old, adopted him when he was a year and a half. He's from South Seattle. So we have a very, kind of full composite family here, from grand babies to adult children to 11 year old who's keeping us on our toes. But marriage wise, you kind of relayed all these things and you can appreciate this. And anyone listening can, it's great work. It's rewarding work, but it's hard work. I mean, marriage is not something where you put a ring on and say it's all said and done. it is a daily commitment. It's a daily commitment of choices around honesty, purity, and integrity. It's around learning how to communicate with someone else, how to live with someone else, how to share a bathroom and a bedroom with someone else. All those things that happen in a marriage environment, you really have to become a great teammate. And I'm extremely blessed to have a wife that is my best friend. She was even back in the college days, we were friends and then fell in love and got married. And so that friendship and that core that we bring to the table has really allowed us to weather some very hard times. I mean, there have been some dark, hard moments where we had to really buckle down. And so how do you, I mean, how does a football coach equate that? Or what did I learn? It's like the fundamentals matter. Blocking and tackling matter, right? The way you communicate with your spouse on a daily basis matters. The servant attitude that my dad taught me matters. I think Wendy and I both come to the table with a desire to serve each other. It's not a selfish space. It can't be. It has to be a team-based space. Frosty, my football coach taught us as athletes: there's two rooms you can live in. One is the window room and one is the mirror room. Most of us live in the mirror room. When you walk into the mirror room, all you see is yourself. It's all mirrors. It's all about me. It's all about what I can consume. And marriage can be a space where you want, you want things emotionally and physically, relationally. And what we have to learn is to live in the window room where there are no mirrors. You can't see yourself. All you can see is what's outside of you. And it's the people around you, which first and foremost, is your family and your spouse. So that imagery for me, built on the fundamentals that you would see on a football field, play into marriage every day. And again, you're going to have some wins. You're going to have some losses. You're going to have some fourth down, and one play to go, and your back's going to be against the wall. And, I think one last piece there, Warren, is we're taught in athletics, especially football, never quit. In football, I was taught the longer we, the longer you play, the better you get. And marriage, for me has been exactly that. The longer we've been married, just the better it gets, all aspects of it. Because we're focused on the Lord, we're focused on each other. We're rooted in fundamentals and we're on the same page as best friends. So I, there's a lot in there, but there's a lot of things I have learned that have translated into my relationship with my wife.

Warren Mainard: That's fantastic. And as you start talking about that window and mirror, it's interesting. I was just listening to a podcast yesterday, with Jim Collins, from the author of 'Good to Great' and 'Built to Last.' He actually uses almost a converse idea with that, where he talks about whenever you're facing adversity or things aren't going your way, or you fail. He talks about, do you look out the window and blame somebody else? Or do you look in the mirror and take the responsibility for the circumstances of your life? So that's an interesting dynamic that there are certain ways in which maybe we need to be looking out the window when it comes to being selfless and focused on others and realizing it's not all about you. And then other times in life where you got to look in the mirror and you got to say, "Hey, the problem is the guy that you're looking at right now in the mirror. Look at that guy."

Jim Shapiro: Right. Yep.

Warren Mainard: And everything else is starting to work itself out.

Jim Shapiro: I might've read somewhere, Warren, something about there's a little speck in your eye, brother. I see something in your eye. And yeah, there's this big old plank in mine, like, we're just... we just don't see ourselves. I like that. I like that kind of reverse model in the rooms, because I think both rooms have a space, and we just identified what that is. We can see others, but man sometimes you got to look in the mirror. And especially as men, we're talking about building men and growing up and just being good men. We have to look in the mirror every day. And we should look in the mirror and ask ourselves, what kind of man are we? What kind of man were we yesterday in the rearview mirror? What kind of man do you want to be today in the windshield of today? And I like that aspect as well. We do need to look in the mirror and be kind of self-reflective and adjust as needed.

Warren Mainard: Yeah. So let's talk about this idea of being a coach who focuses on building men. You mentioned really, I think is a really critical idea that there is a difference between being a coach who is a Christian and a Christian coach. There's a difference between being a business owner who's a Christian or a Christian business owner. And I think that's really, to me, as I've thought more and more about what IMPACT Players is all about, it's really about connecting our faith to the way that we live our lives in the relationships that matter most. And so it's a working out of our Christian faith, our our walk with Christ in a very tangible and practical way with the people that we interact with on a daily basis. And obviously coaching, you spend a lot of time up close with young men who come with their own issues, their own baggage, they're having their own problems and situations, and not every day are they going to be in the right head space at beginning of practice. You've got your own problems and things happening as you come onto the field. And so there's always a lot of potential for people to really kind of act in a way that's inconsistent with maybe what they would hope or want. So how do you take that on as a coach who is a Christian coach? And how do you really model that for these young men? To say, "Hey, your faith should really transform the way that you play the game and the way that you live your life."

Jim Shapiro: Yeah. Awesome. It's a loaded question, right?

Warren Mainard: Yeah.

Jim Shapiro: Well, I think we coached the way we were coached. We lived the way that we were maybe taught, and so we'll pull more Frosty-isms out here. But Frosty never really got up front and started preaching from the pulpit. He was always living it out. He was always teaching us life principles that you could just be a good person who has no faith in Christ and realize, oh that makes sense. Like honesty and integrity, purity. Those are basic fundamentals that any good human would want to pursue. And so I find myself there, but I also find myself in a Christian school environment where I can be more bold and direct. So my first part of this answer is to be focused on the fundamentals. Like I teach my guys from day one. There's a simple rule of life I have that I want to teach you, that is to be with the right people at the right place at the right time, doing the right things. And you can ask any kid on my football team and they're going to say, "Okay, Shaps rule of life: right people, right place, right time, right things," because that equation will put them in the right space to be making good choices just socially. So you teach them some basic fundamentals. Swearing is not allowed on my football field. If you swear, you'll run 200 yards per letter in that swear word and you better pick a short one. I've run my fair share of 800 yards. Like it's, I'm human. And I show that to them; that we have standards and expectations, but we also have enough grace, enough willingness to walk alongside each other. So we teach basic fundamentals of just being a good man, what it takes to be mature. And then, I do teach some principles and really I try and showcase what does that look like then to be a follower of Christ. We don't take enough time, Warren, in our day to really stop, to pray, to read. And so, as an example in practice, we will stop right in the middle of practice during a water break, and we'll stop and pray. Like we're in the middle of team time and seven on seven and tackling. And all of a sudden they hear the whistle, "Okay, guys, it's water time and prayer time." And I just let them stop for a moment. I let them listen to the bird's chirp and nature move. I say, "Guys, God's present right now." And communion and prayer and talking with God should happen within your day as you're busy with your business, as you're running from the next meeting as you're in the middle of a practice or preparing for the next test. Guys, we need to find moments to steal away with the Lord. And so I teach them again, kind of practice and principle of doing that. We have a breakaway every preseason, just like your breakaway last weekend. We go out to a remote island up in the San Juans, no cell phones, nothing. And we just spend time together in community, praying, playing, crying, laughing, and finding as men a space to be safe to share some of the most darkest secrets you ever heard in your life. So those are the things we live out. And then there are other things that we're very direct with. I had, I mean, I'm 49 years old, and I had an 'aha' moment last November where I realized the difference between evangelism and discipleship. Evangelism is one plus one, which is great. It's more people in the kingdom. And I had been an evangelist using football as my platform for 27 years. And this last winter, I realized through a whole different story and circumstance that I need to be in multiplication. I need to be raising up disciples. I need to be training and teaching what I know to the next generation, which is mostly my football team. And so, some crazy things happened with some discipleship on our team this last year. Some high school guys got involved and the high school guys started discipling the junior high guys. And parents got involved. It's just a massive firestorm that took place in our community. And so there's another space now where we're able to kind of live out our faith, live out what we know, train up the next generation of believers and followers. So long answer to, there's a lot of things we can do from basic fundamentals in our daily life that anyone, be it a faith, follower of Christ or not, can do and live out. We're going to teach those principles, building champions. That's what we're going to do. And then from a faith perspective, anyone who wants to go deeper or have a better understanding, we're going to deliver it. We're going to give you a chance to pray, to practice. We're going to have some discipleship going on. We're going to have different opportunities to serve in the community because we have to live out our faith as followers of Christ. We can't be hiding in the corner.

Warren Mainard: Absolutely. And in the middle of Covid, in the middle of all these restrictions, to take that mindset of let's take the ground, let's take the field, let's move forward. We're not going to sit in our hands and pout over our problems. I think that lesson in and of itself is profoundly powerful for all of the young men that you've been able to influence. Jim, I'm sure you know, after being in this position for over 25 years, you've been able to see men that you invested in your twenties that are now grown men, fathers, leaders, husbands. Maybe there's a story that comes to your mind of just a guy that you invested in years ago that is just, the return on investment has been profound.

Jim Shapiro: Yeah, I mean, the problem is there's so many stories, but I will say, I just ran into a young man who's no longer young 'cause I'm 49 and he's like 42, because I was so young when I started, who's kid is now at King's. He's a junior high player. And this guy was a offensive lineman for us, played at Washington State University, a great guy. I hadn't seen him in probably 20 years. And he shows up to the field and we're hugging and laughing, talking about old times. It's just amazing reward to see these, truly these men now, that are raising up their kids, raising up their families. And, I can't tell you, it's time and time again, I get kids coming back saying, "Hey, Shap, I wish I would've played football. I missed out and wish I would've done that 'cause now, in hindsight, in my twenties and thirties, I see that as a unique opportunity." And then those that did, to see them as husbands, fathers, workers in the community. I mean, I, we got a kid that just graduated from West Point, amazing right? A young man that went through the military academy. I know some guys that are pilots that fly internationally around the globe. I know guys that are missionaries that are planting seeds in foreign fields. So it's, yeah, I could probably pick a name and a face and tell you, but it's, there's something about the impact that we have as men. I don't care if you're a coach or not.

Warren Mainard: Yeah.

Jim Shapiro: Just, I don't mean to sound negative, just a dad with his own child is going to have just a ripple effect in the community. And so I think the big takeaway is invest where you're at, invest who the Lord's put in front of you, and you will see the harvest. There's a, there's an old book called the 'Season of Life.' It was written probably now 10 years ago. And that coach was asked, how good is your team going to be? And we, we've all heard this saying now, or this phrase now, he says, well, come back in 20 years. We'll see how great they're going to be. Because it's all about the type of boys that become men and and the impact they can have in our community. And I think the interesting thing about discipleship, the Lord didn't need... 11, 12 guys, he didn't need 1200. He needed an 11 or 12 kind of move on the field. And we see where we're at today. There's a multiplication that happens when we invest just in one life, in one soul that can really change the course of history for many.

Warren Mainard: Yeah. And I mean, very few people get the opportunity to be the head football coach of a high school, let alone for 20 something years be named the 'Coach of the Year' multiple times by different organizations. Your resume is something truly special. But the truth is, is that a lot of us as dads, at somewhere along the journey, do get called on to be a coach of some kind. You know I mean, even just this past spring, I was my son's flag football coach and I've coached his teams and my daughter's teams many times over the years. And there is an influence that is given in those types of environments. There are other opportunities, whether it's leading a Sunday school class, or being a boy scout leader, being somebody that's overseeing a club or a group through the school for your son or your daughter. So I think for most men, they may not fully realize it, but there are lots of opportunities out there to have a similar type of influence on the lives of others. And to take it with that intentionality really seems to me to be the secret to making the impact really profound. I wonder, just to kind of change gears, because for you coaching is just one part of your professional life. The other is as the co-founder of a business called 'The Better Fundraising Company.' Tell us a little bit about that company, what you do, and really how you, again, have taken the man that God has called you to be into the workplace of this company that you have founded that is really thriving and successful.

Jim Shapiro: Yeah, I mean, I'm just one blessed dude to even be talking about it. We all have dreams and ideas, and in 2003, I left my W2 well-paying job. I had a mortgage, two little babies, a wife, and I had a wife who was supportive enough to where I started consulting. I figured, why don't I go take what I've learned in fundraising and nonprofit work and take it to the market space and ended up, leaving there in 2003. And then in 2013, having done that for about 10 years on my own, we formed the company with my good friend and co-founder Steven Screen. So we've, we built a company called 'The Better Fundraising Company.' We have nine teammates now across North America, all employees of ours, but from Tampa to Los Angeles to Texas to Oregon. We have teammates that are working with nonprofits. And nonprofits from all walk of life, from all different backgrounds, from performing arts centers to zoos, to a lot of Christian and faith-based organizations doing local and international relief work. Really, really cool. So part of it is we just, I'm so blessed to wake up, like even today I get to have four different conversations with four different organizations doing four different things. And unlike maybe a widget builder or, and nothing wrong with for-profit work, these organizations have a mission to impact the community for good. And so it's such a rewarding job to know that I can coach and guide and direct, their work and on the revenue side of things, how do you raise money? How do you secure funds? So that they can go do the life-changing impact work that they're having in the community So we're a team of, like I said, you know, nine, ten-ish people, that get to walk alongside about 40 different organizations right now from the Bible League of Canada to World Health based out of Atlanta to the Des Moines Performing Arts Center in Des Moines, Iowa. I mean, Houston Grand Opera in Houston. It's just a fun mix of people. But, what I get to do is I get to apply some of the things we've already talked about. I mean, I have a team of people that I truly care about and love, and they're more family than coworkers, and we've hired really well. They're just amazing people who really understand this work. And so, going to work is not work. It's I get to be around the table, virtually in many cases, with a team that matters. And I get to share, almost like Frosty did, without really preaching and teaching from the pulpit. I get to share who I am. I get to share my life values. Some folks come with this from a faith background, some don't. And that's great. We get to be community together. So I get to kind of live out my values, live out my faith. And then same with customers. I can tell you more and more customer interactions where they're a little bit shocked because I didn't charge them that late fee or I let them out of a contract maybe earlier than they should have because just like in football, it's not about the trophy. It's not about the win. Like, I could be a total tool and say, "Hey, you owe me 10 more dollars on this late fee," or, "Hey, you signed that for two more months," but what's that going to be? Why not finish well? Why not show some grace? Why not be a better in relationship and make it not about the win or about the dollar, and make it more about the relationship and the impact? So there is a lot of parallels between football and the way we do things and business and the way we do things. I'll say, there's a lot of grace, even internally when there's mistakes. Lot of grace, we're human, let's move on. Versus the old kind of, corporate, line of just making a buck and moving on to the next customer. So I think if you worked here and or worked with us, you would see a lot of the same values playing out.

Warren Mainard: Jim, I don't know what, where your college football alliances lie. I'm a Washington Husky fan through and through and have been a really big admirer of Chris Peterson. And like you talked about, Chris Peterson really believed in building men. And he talks a lot about going back to the basics over and over and over again. And one of my favorite little anecdotes from Chris Peterson is he talked about how the words that he never wants to hear from one of his players is, "I got this Coach." He'll laugh and say, "No, you don't got this." We do this over and over and over again, because the moment you think that you've got this, whatever that is, is the moment that you begin to kind of get off track and start to lose the fundamentals in your life. And so I wonder, from a spiritual perspective, what are the fundamentals for Jim Shapiro? What are the things that you say, man, day in, day out, weekly, monthly, yearly; these are the things that I'm going to go back to day in and day out to help me stay on track with God as a husband, as a father, as a leader. That if God were to say, if you were to say to God, "I got this," he'd say, "Jim, no, you, you don't got this. You got to do this every single day."

Jim Shapiro: Yep. Well, first thing about Chris Peterson, then I'll answer that question he had what he called OKGs, our kind of guys. That was an internal term. And I think in life, we need to look for our kind of guys, our kind of gals. Again, dream givers. People are going to support you and motivate you and hold you accountable. Another thing about Chris, in the words that you can say, around our house, and I never let my kids say the word 'can't.' I think we have can't, like, I can't do that. Like, I can't be there or whatever. So we need to take the word can't out of our vocabulary. You might not be able, you might need help to do it, but don't say can't. So those are two things when you said, Chris Pearson, that came to mind. But the basic fundamentals for me, I guess first and foremost is truly just the deepest conviction that I have for my faith in Christ. And I don't say this to be cocky or arrogant, but I would die right now in the second, if anyone said, "You have a choice, do you believe in him or not? I'm going to take you out." I'd be like, no worries. I, I'm so convicted in my faith and my understanding of who Christ is. We have to recognize there is a God: look at our bodies, look at nature, like there has to be a creator over all things. And so if there's a creator, then you start following the line to Jesus, then that makes total sense. That Jesus was God in the bod, he was here, he lived it out, and that he is the sacrifice that the Lord needed to put in place for all of our shortcomings and sins. So I am extremely, almost to the point of almost too much of just convicted by my faith. There was just no doubt in my mind. So that that conviction roots me every day and, and grounds me every day in my actions. One piece that is critical to my walk is accountability. I sin and I fall short every day. And I have three guys around me, all guys I played college football with at PLU. We're all in our late forties, early fifties. We meet every Wednesday, 8:00 AM, right now via Zoom 'cause one's in Oregon, one's an Olympian, and I'm here. And we break it down. We, just to go there for a second: there's a lot of things happening around us where we see failure. And it's because I think men didn't have someone in their life to call them on their crap. It's like, to say, I see this in you. I love you, but I see this in you, and I'm here to help you turn from it. The old Richard Sherman headline from yesterday, like, it breaks my heart not knowing all that's going on in his life to see any man, especially one in the spotlight, end up in a situation like that. And my guess is he didn't have men in his life saying, "What are you doing, bro? Like where are you right now?" So, accountability every Wednesday for me is I run to that meeting, so I can be honest, so I can confess, so I can be held accountable so we can pray together. So there's accountability, there's prayer commitments coming out of those meetings every week where we pray for each other. So having the iron sharpens iron. You talked about taking ground a few minutes ago, and I think as men, we need to be taking ground for what is good. And I think a lot of us hide behind the walls of the fort. We hide behind what's comfortable and behind the walls, we don't have other men with us. And I have this visual of yes, the Lord is the wall of the fort and the foundation. He does hold this massive iron gate to protect us, but we need to be behind the walls preparing ourselves for battle. And sometimes we need to go over the wall, and if we're going to go over the wall, we need people with us. And so I think surrounding ourselves with dream givers, people that can speak truth into your life, places you can be honest. So, accountability, discipleship, prayer. And then one where I don't do as well as I'd like is just being rooted in God's word. That is one powerful book from start to finish. And if we really were to take the time, and I need to do more of it, as we probably all do, just to break down, and that that's God's playbook. And that thing is loaded from start to finish, from Genesis to Revelation for the game plan of life is all there. I would encourage anyone, especially men, to go read Proverbs four through seven. There is, we need to be pursuing wisdom, or we can be pursuing the wayward wife, the harlot, the whore. She's there. Those are two characters in that story, and that is life. We have choices every day, so we can go to the scriptures and find what God wants for us, and also find warnings for what happened when we follow maybe into the lap of the wayward Wife. So, accountability, prayer, scripture and surrounding myself with dream givers. That's the basic fundamentals for me and my faith.

Warren Mainard: Beautiful. Jim, thanks so much for sharing and thank you for taking time to be a part of this podcast with us. I wonder you, you've given us so much wisdom, so many insights, is there anything else that you would just say, hey if I could pass this on to another man, this would be a nugget or a just a principle that you can't do without, you got to go with this. Maybe it's Shap's, rule. Whatever it is what, any final parting thought?

Jim Shapiro: Yeah, maybe just a good football coach coming out and me giving us a little pregame speech before we go back onto the field. I don't have necessarily another principle to share. I do have a call to action, like...

Warren Mainard: Yes.

Jim Shapiro: I mean, and Hutch used to do this. So we used to have this, he would go from the front in church and he'd say, "I'm looking for a few good men." And the entire church, all men would say, "Hu-ah!" and he'd say, "To do what?" "To stand!" We need to stand on the front lines. We need to stand on at the tower ready. We need to stand in the gap, where there's a gap in our family and our relationship. My call to action is we need to be bold. We, God is looking for a few good men. He doesn't need a million good men. He needs a few good men that will lead from the front, that will be willing to risk anything from social collateral to business to anything else, to lead with conviction. And when we do that, I have no doubt we're going to be honored and protected and respected. But right now we don't. We got a bunch of guys sitting on the sidelines. We've got a bunch of guys sitting in the stands eating popcorn, watching other people play the game. And we don't need that. We need impact players. We need people on the field that are giving their best effort. I tell my kids all the time, "I don't care if you don't know where to go on a play. I don't care if you don't know what to do on a play. If you're on offense, go tackle somebody. If you're on," excuse me, "if you're on defense, go tackle somebody. If you're on offense, go block somebody." It could be the the wrong guy, a hundred percent, but at least do something going forward. And so that's maybe the call to action. Let's get some impact players back into the game. And just be bold with who you are. You are beautifully and wonderfully made. Every single one of us listening and watching to this, God does not make mistakes. And just like football, we need some big guys that can move bodies. Some quick guys that can catch, some guy to get me a drink of water, another guy to take stats. We need everyone in the game, to make this thing work. So hopefully all the IMPACT Players listening, take that and move forward with it.

Warren Mainard: Love it. Jim, I, I'm ready to put on the pads, strap on the helmet. I think I've got some eligibility left. Put me in the game, coach! I can see why you are successful and inspirational head coach, and it's such a privilege to be able to spend this time with you. Just as we come to a conclusion, if anybody wants to get in touch with you or if they want to learn more about 'The Better Fundraising Company,' how would they go ahead and do that?

Jim Shapiro: Yep. Really easy. It's my name, [email protected], also on Twitter at @Jim Shapiro. Feel free to reach out to me, direct message me, always open to new conversations just about life, about football, about work, about faith. Just yeah, love to hear from folks. So [email protected] is the best way to reach me via email.

Warren Mainard: Love it. So if you've been listening to this podcast, Jim Shapiro is what IMPACT Players is all about. If that's something that is interested to you as you've been hearing his story and you're saying, man, I want to be a few, one of those few good men, I want to be on the front line. I want to be bold. I want to encourage you, get involved with IMPACT Players. Learn what we're doing. We have opportunities for men to come together on a monthly basis to gather, to be encouraged, to be inspired, to be given nuggets of truth that will help them be better husbands, fathers, and leaders. And if you're really ready to go deeper, want to invite you to get involved with one of our IMPACT Players coaching cohorts. These are seven week sessions that go during the school year, fall, winter, and spring. And it's an opportunity to build some relationships with some men like Jim talked about, guys that you can share your struggles with, that you can ask to pray for you, that that will, like Jim said, call you out on your crap and let you know where you need to grow. And so, men, let that iron sharpening iron be a part of your life and you'll be blessed and be better for it. Jim, thank you again for joining us and thank you for listening. Be sure to follow us on our Insta, or excuse me, on our Twitter, on our Facebook, and of course on YouTube as well. And, with our Spotify and Apple Podcast. Thank you again and we'll look forward to the next time.

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