The numbers say that less than 1% of athletes turn pro after college, but 100% of all athletes will retire.
In 2012 Thomas R. Williams was one of the athletes who retired. Fresh out of the NFL he was uncertain about his future. 5 years earlier he had graduated from the University of Southern California, and a month earlier he was playing football in the NFL.
It was a warm sunny southern California afternoon and Thomas was at a Dodger game with a USC alumni who had invited him. During the 7th inning stretch, the two of them walked up to the concession stand to grab a famous dodger dog and root beer float. While they were standing in line, the alumni asked Thomas,“ now that your football career is over, what are you going to do?” Dead silence. The truth was Thomas didn’t make a ton of money that would allow him to relax and ride off into the sunset.
Eventually, Thomas knew he would need to find a job, another career path, an occupation.
During this exchange the USC Alumn looked at him as if he knew Thomas didn’t have any idea and said, “Why don’t you get yourself a nice suit, come down to my office, and I will see about getting you a job.” This person happened to be a wealth manager to which Thomas had no desire to become a financial advisor, but what struck him was that he knew Thomas didn’t have a finance background. Here is how PURSUITS of Greatness came about: there was a moment when the alumni said “Thomas, we can teach you everything you need to know about money. But what we can’t teach our employees and partners is what you have learned on the football field. You have a unique set of intangibles that will allow you succeed in anything that you do. All we need to do is get you dressing the part, I know that you will be able to transfer you skills and be successful.”