Spotlight on John Logan
Meet John Logan - entrepreneur magician! He's turned the art of magic into a lesson for all entrepreneurs, preaching the message "Impossible is just a word" - which may or may not be the explanation for that incredible comeback by the Patriots at the 2017 Superbowl.
How did your love for magic begin? How long did it take for you to realize you are a talented magician?
I first became interested in magic when I was attending my aunt’s birthday party and I created a magic trick to entertain myself since I was bored. After experimenting with a few ideas, I started creating my own tricks with everyday objects such as cards and coins. A few days later I filmed myself performing some of my creations and posted videos online.
A few weeks later, a talent agency contacted me asking for my phone number. He told me just based off the videos I submitted, he was impressed with my creativity and saw potential in me for the future. Since my face wasn’t shown in the videos, he thought I was a bit older than what he expected. After numerous conversations, I signed a contract with the company becoming the youngest "creative consultant" they ever hired. Everyone else working for the company was over 25 years old, while I was only 12 at the time.
Since then, I've been very fortunate to be surrounded by a supportive family and my creative consultant, Stathi Zaf.
Stathi and I talk every day on how to create new material for shows and are constantly brainstorming new things.
By performing more, I became increasingly comfortable with the magic and finally understood this philosophy: everything in life is based on perspective. For instance, if someone can question the "norm", they have the ability to enhance their creativity and motivation, thus having a more optimistic point of view in any type of situation.
I wrote and published "The Perfect Illusion: Life", which shows how the art of magic can help people look at life in a more optimistic way. It not only teaches magic tricks, but also a motivational book that provides methods on how a person should pursue their passions.
My phrase in life is that ‘impossible is just a word.’ I use magic not as a way to trick people, but as a way to help them achieve personal and professional goals in their life.
Rather than using bunnies, top hats, streamers, and large, unfamiliar props, I believe magic should be about performing extraordinary feats with ordinary objects. This is why I use simple, organic, and borrowed props such as playing cards, dollar bills, red solo cups, cell phones, footballs, and magazines in his shows (fun fact: I can actually fit his entire act in a backpack)
You've done significant research on how entrepreneurs can learn from how entertainers capture an audience's attention. What are some of your key findings?
Stathi and I did five years of research on what business leaders can learn from entertainers regarding the creativity process and I present my research at various events.
After doing primary and secondary research traveling throughout the United States interviewing award-winning entertainers, I created what's called the "Magician-Entrepreneurial Journey" which is a five-stage process: Idea Generation, Prototype Generation, Communication, Feedback, and Tweaking. There are then different strategies within each phase.
Here's an example for one strategy for "Idea Generation". Take two random objects that have nothing to do with each other and put together a trick/product. For instance, a magician might take a cell phone and a waterbottle and try to think of a way for the cell phone to diffuse through the waterbottle. An entrepreneur might take two random things, such as an assembly line and cheeseburgers and create something out of it, such as McDonalds. It really brings out your creativity by taking two random objects that have nothing to do with each other and think of a final "product".
I’ve done keynote talks at entrepreneurship events, leadership conference, and creativity workshops where I explain more in-depth each phase and strategy, but also incorporate magic within it as well. It’s both an educational and entertaining type of talk because I perform magic within it.
OK...Level with us... Was that miraculous, last-minute win by The Patriots in last year's SuperBowl because of YOU? Tell us the story!
I'll just say this: In the beginning of the 2017 season, the New England Patriots had me perform magic for the players on a weekly basis where I promoted my message that "Impossible is Just a Word."
At the end of the 2017 season, the New England Patriots pulled off the greatest comeback of all time during Super Bowl 51.
I'll let you draw the conclusion :)