Episode 609 – Michael Berthold

Michael is an Accountant & Musician

In this episode of "What's Your 'And'?", Michael Berthold shares his journey to combine accounting and his passion for music. Michael recounts how forming the band Clubhouse in college and winning a contest to play at the LC Pavilion gave him tremendous confidence, which he has carried into his accounting career. He discusses the balancing act of being a senior accountant and client engagement manager at Bean in Los Angeles, while also pursuing his love for creating music. Berthold encourages listeners to express their hobbies and interests at work, relating a memorable encounter with a CFO who was a former bass player for Imagine Dragons. He emphasizes the importance of being authentic and sharing one's talents with the world.

Episode Highlights

· Music has been a profound and continuing presence in Michael’s life
· Pursuing personal passions, such as music, alongside professional work is essential for overall well-being and can enhance success in one’s career
· Being open about one’s hobbies and interests in a corporate environment can lead to unexpected connections and common ground with colleagues and superiors
· It is important to stay true to oneself by expressing and sharing individual talents and passions in the workplace and beyond, rather than solely being defined by one’s job title
· Balancing professional responsibilities with personal interests is not only possible but encouraged in today’s flexible work environments, as it contributes to creating a more rounded and fulfilled individual

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Podcast Transcript

Michael Berthold [00:00:05]:
Hi. This is Michael Berthold. And when I’m not crunching numbers and slapping the bass, I’m listening to John Garrett on What’s Your And?

John Garrett [00:00:16]:
Welcome to episode 609 of what’s your and. This is John Garrett. And each Wednesday, I interview a professional who just like me. It’s known for a hobby or a passion or an interest outside of work. And to put it another way, it’s encouraging people to find their and. Those things above and beyond your technical skills, the things that differentiate you when you’re at work, It’s the answer to the question of who else are you beyond your job title. And if you like what the show’s about, be sure to check out the award winning book. It’s on Amazon, Indigo, Barnes and Noble, Book shop, a few other websites.

John Garrett [00:00:46]:
All the links are at what’s your and dot com. The book goes more in-depth with the research behind why these outsider work passions are so crucial to your corporate culture. I can’t say how much it means that everyone’s reading it and writing such great reviews on Amazon and, more importantly, changing the cultures where they work because of it. If you want me to read it to you, that’s right. This voice reading the book. Look for What’s Your Hand on Audible or wherever you get your audiobooks. And please don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast. You don’t miss any of the future episodes.

John Garrett [00:01:12]:
I love sharing such interesting stories each and every week, and this week is no different with my guest, Michael Berthold. He’s a senior accountant and client engagement manager at Bean out of Los Angeles. And now he’s with me here today. Michael, thanks so much for taking time to be with me on What’s Your End.

Michael Berthold [00:01:28]:
Hey, John. Thanks for having me. Appreciate it. I’m happy to be here.

John Garrett [00:01:31]:
No. Totally, man. I’m so excited. This is gonna be a blast. This is gonna be awesome. I have 17 rapid fire questions, though. Get to know Michael out of the gate here.

Michael Berthold [00:01:38]:
Alright. Let’s do it.

John Garrett [00:01:39]:
Alright. Alright. We’ll start you out with I think this is an easy one on your computer, more of a PC or a Mac? Well, it depends what

Michael Berthold [00:01:44]:
I’m doing, you know. If I’m in in the spreadsheets, I think PC has always been what I what I lean towards. I actually have a a gaming PC that I I do some, some video gaming on. But if I’m, you know, doing music stuff, DJing stuff, definitely the Mac all the way.

John Garrett [00:01:58]:
Very much. You’re ambidextrous. I like that. Okay.

Michael Berthold [00:02:00]:
That’s right.

John Garrett [00:02:00]:
A little both. Alright. Alright. How about more cats or dogs?

Michael Berthold [00:02:04]:
Definitely dogs. I’m allergic to cats.

John Garrett [00:02:06]:
Oh, okay. Alright.

Michael Berthold [00:02:07]:
I can tolerate them, but I I’ll I’ll break out in hives occasionally.

John Garrett [00:02:10]:
Right? That’s not worth it, man. That’s not worth it. Tells me. How about Star Wars or Star Trek?

Michael Berthold [00:02:15]:
So I don’t think I I’m a huge either Star Wars or Star Trek guy, but I’ve seen most of the Star Wars movies, none of the Star Trek stuff. So guess Star Wars. Yeah. I guess if we had to.

John Garrett [00:02:24]:
Yeah. There we go. Alright. Fair enough. How about are you more talk or text?

Michael Berthold [00:02:28]:
It’s definitely definitely talk.

John Garrett [00:02:30]:
Yeah. Unseen. Just gets done faster.

Michael Berthold [00:02:32]:
Texting’s tough to keep up with these days, I think. I don’t think we were meant to to always be talking to, you know, 10 plus people at a time. Right?

John Garrett [00:02:39]:
Yeah. Through a chat.

Michael Berthold [00:02:41]:
Yeah. Right. Anywhere in the world. Right?

John Garrett [00:02:42]:
We don’t get the tone. We don’t get the whatever. It’s like, what? Well, I didn’t know what that that’s what you meant. You weren’t smiling when you typed it? Okay. Like,

Michael Berthold [00:02:50]:
how about when it comes

John Garrett [00:02:51]:
to puzzles? Sudoku, crossword, jigsaw puzzle, Wordle? I don’t know. Whatever.

Michael Berthold [00:02:56]:
Let’s go Sudoku, you know. I’m a numbers numbers guy, so.

John Garrett [00:02:59]:
Very much. That’s how I do my tax returns, actually. Like, ah, there’s no 7 in this row. Let’s just make that. Alright? Like, it’s just kidding. Just kidding. IRS. Just kidding.

John Garrett [00:03:08]:
How about a favorite color?

Michael Berthold [00:03:11]:
Let’s go with, blue. That was my school color growing up.

John Garrett [00:03:13]:
Oh, okay. Alright. Alright. How about a least favorite color?

Michael Berthold [00:03:17]:
Let’s say yellow. Yellow or brown. You know what I mean? It’s no one’s favorite.

John Garrett [00:03:21]:
Right? Right. Right? It’s either too sunshiny or too something. Yeah. And brown is by far the most popular, least popular. I don’t know how to say it right, but that’s what everybody says. So yeah. Yeah. Fair enough.

John Garrett [00:03:32]:
How about are you sunrise, sunset?

Michael Berthold [00:03:35]:
I’m gonna say sunrise. I think there’s something special about if you make it up to the sunrise and you stay up all night and watch it with friends or something.

John Garrett [00:03:43]:
There you go. So you’re not waking up early. It’s No. Staying awake until sunrise. Okay. Alright. I was surprised. I was like, wait a minute.

John Garrett [00:03:50]:
Are you sure? Like, I I see what’s up. Alright. Alright.

Michael Berthold [00:03:53]:
Those are special moments, you know, when you when you’re with a group of friends and somehow you made it until until 6 or 7 in the morning.

John Garrett [00:03:59]:
Yeah. Yeah. And it’s like we are so grounded. Oh, yeah. We’re adults. Never mind. I’m like, it’s that’s awesome. How about a favorite actor or an actress?

Michael Berthold [00:04:08]:
I don’t know if I have a specific favorite, but maybe like a like a Jake Gyllenhaal or something. I feel like I feel like a lot of his movies like, I like war movies. I like kind of mysterious dramas, and I feel like he, nails

John Garrett [00:04:21]:
Yeah. And he’s in.

Michael Berthold [00:04:21]:
A bunch of those.

John Garrett [00:04:22]:
So there

Michael Berthold [00:04:22]:
you go.

John Garrett [00:04:23]:
That works. Totally. This is an important one. Toilet paper roll. Are we going over or under?

Michael Berthold [00:04:27]:
No. That’s a no brainer. It’s it’s over all day.

John Garrett [00:04:29]:
Over all day. Alright. There you go. Alright. Everyone’s

Michael Berthold [00:04:32]:
If it’s under, I’m I’m fixing it.

John Garrett [00:04:33]:
Oh, okay. You’re that guy. Alright. I like it. I like it. Alright. That’s some next level stuff. Alright.

John Garrett [00:04:38]:
There we go. Oh, this is a tricky one. Cheeseburger or pizza?

Michael Berthold [00:04:43]:
I’m gonna say pizza. Yeah. Nice nice supreme pizza. That’s that’s a good tip. Oh, yeah. Go and load it up. There you go.

John Garrett [00:04:48]:
How about ice cream? Are you going in a cup or in a cone?

Michael Berthold [00:04:51]:
Cup. Let’s keep it clean. So, like, the cone always ends up something on my hand. Right?

John Garrett [00:04:55]:
Right? Yeah. No. Absolutely. It gets messy. That’s for sure. I don’t know why I got so food all of a sudden. Maybe I was hungry. Oh, balance sheet or income statement.

John Garrett [00:05:03]:
That’ll be a fun one.

Michael Berthold [00:05:04]:
Let’s go with balance sheet. And, you know, you can you can kinda check yourself and and make sure everything, like, balances.

John Garrett [00:05:10]:
Yeah. Yeah. It adds up. Then you know

Michael Berthold [00:05:12]:
you’re done. Check there.

John Garrett [00:05:13]:
It’s like that. That is a it’s built into it. I like that. How about a favorite number? 21. Is there a reason?

Michael Berthold [00:05:19]:
Reason’s kinda silly, but it was my my first bus number when I first started going to elementary school.

John Garrett [00:05:25]:
And That’s awesome.

Michael Berthold [00:05:26]:
Yeah. For some reason, I just really loved that bus and the the the bus driver, I guess, and that stuck with me.

John Garrett [00:05:31]:
Yeah. No. That’s great. I love it. That’s that’s fantastic. That’s very good. What’s a typical breakfast? You know, when you stay up all night and you see the sunrise, I guess, I guess

Michael Berthold [00:05:41]:
Going with Clif Bar. Crunchy peanut butter Clif Bar.

John Garrett [00:05:43]:
Okay. Alright. Alright.

Michael Berthold [00:05:44]:
I like it. It’s quick. It’s easy. It’s got protein.

John Garrett [00:05:46]:
Yeah. No. It’s all good. All good. We got 2 more. When it comes to books, you got audiobook, ebook, real book?

Michael Berthold [00:05:53]:
So I’d say real book.

John Garrett [00:05:54]:
Yeah. Old school.

Michael Berthold [00:05:56]:
I actually haven’t done a bunch of audiobooks, but through listening to some of your cast, a lot of people, I feel like, love that.

John Garrett [00:06:00]:
Man, when I wrote my book and it came out and everyone I didn’t have the audiobook at first, and everyone’s like, when’s the audiobook? And then I was like, people do that? And they’re like, yeah. And And I was like, oh my gosh. So, yeah, I got the recording studio and everything. Yeah. It was wild. But yeah. And last one, the favorite thing you have or the favorite thing you own?

Michael Berthold [00:06:17]:
I’d say it’s this little drum machine I have. It’s called a Roland TR 8 s, and it’s got, like, all the classic, you know, 808, 707, 909 samples, and you can program it. You can play it live. It’s always a fun toy to bring into the studio and just lay some interesting sounds down.

John Garrett [00:06:30]:
That’s cool, man. Yeah. Like, drummers have been replaced by not even AI. Like, it just like the whole thing. Like, it’s just but yeah. That’s great because then you can just practice right there. I love it, man. That’s awesome.

John Garrett [00:06:41]:
Super cool, which leads right into just making music in general and, like, how did that get started?

Michael Berthold [00:06:47]:
Yeah. I mean, music has always been a huge, huge part of my life. Right? I think growing up at a very young age, maybe 3 from earliest I can remember, my dad and my uncles 3 of my uncles and my dad played in a a band together in the in the Cleveland area growing up. A band called Stone Groove, and they they played a bunch of, you know, seventies, eighties rock covers, that sort of thing. I just remember, you know, going to the shows or we’d have backyard parties, they’d be playing, and my dad would always call me up for American Pie, and I’d sing it with him as this this little kid that was always our thing. And so then, you know, you fast forward to Thanksgiving, Christmas, all these things. Every family get together, it’s like someone busts out the guitar, all the uncles are playing and singing, and, you know, me as a kid, I’m like, oh, I wanna how do I join in? You know, what can I do? And so, yeah, that just kind of inspired me to take up playing drums, piano at at a young age. I think my dad got my 1st drum set, and I was, like, probably around 3 or 2.

Michael Berthold [00:07:40]:
And I was just down in the basement wailing on it. You know? Right?

John Garrett [00:07:43]:
Yeah. That’s awesome. And so then like from the because I started piano, I guess, when I was young. And then, you know, later on, when you got into school, were you more in like marching band and and all that stuff as well, or were you more, just going rogue here with the family jams?

Michael Berthold [00:07:58]:
Didn’t do that as much. It was more so just, like, garage band type things with friends. You know, a couple of us had drum sets, and the the rest of us would bring all our amps and keyboards and guitars over, and we’d just, you know, play into the night. I think, I think, actually, a big part of it was Guitar Hero came out when I was probably, like, 11 or 12, and that was just, like I mean, it was amazing. Right? You just get to play all these you feel like you’re playing them, then rock band comes out, and then all all your friends get to play, you know, 4 of you at a time. I think one summer going into maybe 6th grade, me and my my 2 buddies, we must have spent, you know, 8 hours a day on rock band just playing through the songs, mastering them. Yeah. And then that translated to, oh, let’s do it on the real instruments now and do it for real.

John Garrett [00:08:36]:
That’s cool, man. That’s so great. And and then, like yeah. And then you go to Ohio State or the Ohio State. My bad. Then things get, like, super exciting.

Michael Berthold [00:08:44]:
Yeah. Yeah. Definitely. I mean, there’s this moment at my high school graduation where I had never really performed for anybody. And my, my friend came to me. He had wrote written this song called Anchor that was specifically for the idea of graduating and, you know, going away from home. Yeah. And I helped him finish the writing on it, and then he was like, well, let’s perform it for graduation.

Michael Berthold [00:09:01]:
I was like, oh, no. Like, I’ve never I’ve never played for anyone, and there’s gonna be, like, couple thousand people there. And my mom was like, you know, you have to do it. You gotta give it a shot. And I was just so nervous, but I, you know, I knew I’d regret it forever if I didn’t. Got up there just it’s absolutely shaking. And then, you know, second the first strum came out, it was like, this is what I wanna do.

John Garrett [00:09:19]:
So different than the garage and the basement and everything else?

Michael Berthold [00:09:22]:

John Garrett [00:09:22]:
So what what instrument were you playing for that one then?

Michael Berthold [00:09:24]:
So that was guitar. Oh, okay. Like an acoustic guitar playing and and singing. And then, you know, couple months later, I go to college and started off in in engineering and wanted almost nothing to do with engineering. I want everything to do with just sitting out on campus and and playing for people.

John Garrett [00:09:37]:
So We might be cousins, man. Holy cow. Like, I got a d in physics.

Michael Berthold [00:09:41]:
I I got a d plus in it.

John Garrett [00:09:42]:
Oh, you cheater. What the hell? D plus. Get out of here. Now I remember sitting in in the in the midterm, like, the first semester final, and there’s, like, a blue book, you know, where there’s, like, 4 questions, but it takes you, I don’t know, 7 hours or whatever long it takes. And I I was halfway through, like, the the first question, and I out loud, I just went who cares? Like, this isn’t even it was like a frog on a disc that jumped. Like, what happens? What? I’m out. Like, this is dumb. Like, I’m out.

John Garrett [00:10:06]:
Like, it’s just I I just got destroyed.

Michael Berthold [00:10:09]:
Well, I think there’s something to be said when the average score on every test is a 27% or 30%. It’s like, well, this doesn’t seem like you’re making the test the

John Garrett [00:10:16]:
right way.

Michael Berthold [00:10:16]:
Right? We’re all failing.

John Garrett [00:10:18]:
Just getting hammered, and it’s all on a curve. Yeah. Yeah. The a kid got, like, you know, a a 50% on the exam, and he’s like a genius. And it’s like, man, this is yeah. So I feel you, man. I feel you that that physics, man, that’ll weed you out fast.

Michael Berthold [00:10:31]:
No. It was it was tough.

John Garrett [00:10:32]:
Yeah. Yeah. And so but you found some other musicians when you were in college. Yeah.

Michael Berthold [00:10:36]:
Yeah. So I was actually going to Ohio State and, you know, I was listening to a lot of, like, indie pop alternative music, bands like Foster the People, 1975, some of these groups. And, you know, I was trying to find people to play with that that really, you know, love the same thing, and I I found some. And I, was actually going down to Ohio University to visit one of my best friends, and he was like, you know, Michael, you gotta meet this guy that lives across the hall from me. Like, all the same songs that you blast, he’s blasting. He plays with his his twin brother and they have another friend and they’re like putting this song together. Like, you need to just meet him. So I went down there for a weekend and, spent, like, the whole evening hanging out with this guy in their common area playing on the piano, playing guitar and stuff.

Michael Berthold [00:11:13]:
And, yeah, the next day he was like, you know, man, we’re from Columbus. We’re finishing our first single. We’re gonna be up the recording this week. You wanna, like, come through and and hang out with us? And, yeah, went went by the studio and after that, Clubhouse, kind of the band I was in, took shape. And, yeah. We started getting together every weekend playing and and recording stuff and and playing shows. It was, yeah, it was awesome.

John Garrett [00:11:31]:
That’s great, man. Yeah. That’s that’s so cool. And and, like, do you have some of your performances that come to mind? Obviously, the high school graduation one, but, like, ones where you’re, like, man, that was crazy. Like, I can’t believe we did that.

Michael Berthold [00:11:43]:
Yeah. I mean, there’s a few really early early off, maybe, you know, a year and a half into to playing. And normally, you know

John Garrett [00:11:49]:
Oh, cow. Yeah.

Michael Berthold [00:11:50]:
You have to go in and play all the, you know, the dive bars and all that stuff and, you know, earn your stripes. You warped up. Yeah. We had gotten really lucky. You know, we had a great family and friends always supporting us, coming out to the shows. And one of the first shows we got on was a holiday showcase down in Columbus at the big venue there called LC Pavilion, and it was with a band called Silverstone Pickups, Fulls, Wolf Alice, Cirque Witch, all kind of like indie rock bands.

John Garrett [00:12:12]:
Right? Yeah.

Michael Berthold [00:12:12]:
And so there was a contest to go through that. We played in all these battle of the bands, and then we eventually ended up winning it and doing it as, you know, like, 19 year olds or whatever we were.

John Garrett [00:12:20]:
That’s great.

Michael Berthold [00:12:21]:
And it was it was just crazy. Like, you know, we’re playing, like, indie pop, like, happy kinda sunshiny music, and then, like, you know, Fools is coming in and just, just, like, just playing these heavy guitars.

John Garrett [00:12:31]:
Right. Yeah. But, I mean, that’s that’s great. And it’s and it’s almost like like you don’t know what you don’t know, so you’re just having fun. Like, there’s no pressure. Like, whatever. You know? Like, it’s all good. That’s incredible, man.

John Garrett [00:12:42]:
That’s really cool. And you’re still creating music, I mean, on your own now. I mean and so, like, it’s always a part of who you are. I mean, that that that side of your brain is always moving.

Michael Berthold [00:12:52]:
Yeah. I mean, even just, you know, walking around and and doing whatever in the house is always whistling. Always has to be some sorta and I think I get that from my dad. You know? He’s a big whistler and and all that, but there’s always some beat going, some melody. Definitely definitely in my bones.

John Garrett [00:13:05]:
That’s awesome, man. I I love that. That’s that’s so cool. And and do you feel it all, like like, the music side of you gives you a skill that you bring to work in the accounting career?

Michael Berthold [00:13:15]:
Oh, for sure. I think it’s a completely different way of of thinking. You know? And for one thing, just being on stage in general, like the idea that can be so daunting and scary to someone that hasn’t done it, but when you put yourself in that situation enough times and it becomes something natural, you almost feel like you can face anything. You know what I mean? Especially in in the workplace. Right? Yeah. I think the only thing maybe I’d be scared to face is

John Garrett [00:13:44]:
It’s so hilarious. Like, they all do. Like, everyone I’ve met, they’re like, oh my gosh. That’s so hard. And I’m like, what? That would be amazing. Like, if I could just sing, it would be over. Like, you guys would have like, it would be I’d be on a rocket ship. It is interesting because, yeah, you don’t have an instrument to hide behind.

John Garrett [00:13:58]:
You don’t have 3 other, 4 other, or how many other people up on the stage with you to absorb the booze or the whatever. Or, you know, but but or the applause, you know, either way. But that being said, like, if I start a joke and it’s not going well, I can just stop. You start a song and it’s like, we we still gotta finish the song.

Michael Berthold [00:14:16]:
Now we’ve had those times.

John Garrett [00:14:17]:
We got 3 more minutes. Everybody’s going. Then it’s almost just for you then really because it’s like, well, it’s practice. It’s all good. Yeah. And and so is this something like the music side of you that you’ve shared through your career with coworkers? I mean, it comes up on occasion?

Michael Berthold [00:14:35]:
Yeah. Yeah. For sure. I think just kind of given the timing of everything, you know, playing in college and then going into the workforce. After that, it was, you know, such a huge part of me. I’d spent so much time doing it that in interviews and all that, it was bound to come up. Right? It was I enjoy talking about it because it’s what I know best. Right? So definitely didn’t stray away from hiding that at all.

John Garrett [00:14:54]:
Good, man.

Michael Berthold [00:14:55]:
I can see how there’s times where you’re going into a corporate place and, you know, you want to fit whatever that that kind of image is and all that. But to me, it’s always been about, you know, staying true to yourself and letting people know what you’re about. And if, you know, they don’t vibe with it, they don’t jive with it, then, you know, it wasn’t meant to be. Right?

John Garrett [00:15:13]:
Man, that’s so fantastic to hear and so refreshing to hear because what is the mold that we’re supposed to fit anyway? Like, that’s the thing is, like, everyone’s trying to to fit into this odd shaped box that no one actually fits in. Like, you know, like it doesn’t fit anybody, but we’re all trying to fit it. It’s like this is dumb. Like it’s like being on a like a merry-go-round that everyone’s throwing up and no one wants to be on it. And it’s like, well, why don’t we just stop the merry-go-round? Like, this is stupid. Like, what are we doing? Like, you know? And so good for you for just being like, hey, this is me. Like, you’re gonna hire all of Michael, and the music side of me is definitely a big part. So, if you don’t like that then this probably won’t be a good fit anyway, you know, type of thing.

John Garrett [00:15:54]:
And it sounds like you’re in a great place with Bean as well, where that’s the kind of organization that does that.

Michael Berthold [00:16:00]:
Yeah. No. It’s been awesome. I mean, being with Bean and and coming from, you know, a big accounting firm and going through busy seasons and then going to more of this digital advisory consulting practice that focuses on flexibility. It’s been amazing, right? I’ve been able to do the music stuff. I’ve been able to go to studio sessions, but I’ve been able to keep up with my accounting, my knowledge, and, you know, still pay the bills and and make a living, right? So, I think it’s definitely something that everyone strives for, not just musicians or entertainers, right? Everyone wants balance in their life, whether it’s to travel or to spend time with family, all these things. And I think kind of working on this project basis, especially in accounting, is is amazing and it’s the way to go.

John Garrett [00:16:36]:
Yeah. Because I mean it’s it’s there’s other parts of of Michael besides the the accounting part and, you know, and and and even the music part. There’s other parts, and and they all need love and nourishment. They don’t need to be, you know, stuck in the back corner and come out when I’m 65 and retire. It’s like no. Because by then you forgot that that you put them back there, and it’s like, oh, my bad. You know? Like, and so, you know, it’s cool that that you’re able to do that, and and you’re living your best life. You’re gonna do your best work.

John Garrett [00:17:04]:
I mean it’s it’s really that simple.

Michael Berthold [00:17:06]:
Yeah. I mean you can’t you can’t work good if you don’t feel good, and, you know, they kind of go hand in hand.

John Garrett [00:17:11]:
Absolutely, man. And have you ever come across, like, other musicians through work, whether it’s clients or coworkers or other people that I mean, of course, everybody loves music. I mean, it’s hard to find people that hate music.

Michael Berthold [00:17:23]:
Yeah. I’ve come across I actually just I spoke with a CFO, a finance guy that I’d connected with and he actually used to play bass in Imagine Dragons.

John Garrett [00:17:32]:
What? Time out. No way.

Michael Berthold [00:17:34]:
So I I talked with him recently and it was like, you know, same kind of thing. Shared a lot of just the same experiences, and it was just super, super cool because, I I mean, I looked up to them, like, all through high school. Like, their first album was just on repeat to every every sporting event I was going to. I was listening to that, and to hear it come from him that, you know, he’s done similar things was was just super

John Garrett [00:17:55]:
Yeah. He’s your ghost of Christmas future.

Michael Berthold [00:17:57]:
Yeah. And he was the base guy too.

John Garrett [00:17:58]:
Right. I mean, it’s it’s literally that. It’s like, oh my gosh. Like, this is awesome, man. Like, that’s that’s very cool. And and that conversation just lights both of you up. You know, when you’re talking about the accounting finance side. Alright.

John Garrett [00:18:11]:
Yeah. We gotta get to this. Like, literally any other accountant could have that conversation with him, but you’re one of a handful of people that could really have that bass guitar conversation with him while also weaving in the accounting on accident. You know? Like and, that’s magic, man, because it lights both of you up.

Michael Berthold [00:18:28]:
No. 100 percent. And I think I think, you know, you come across a lot of musician professionals because I think the world we live in now, like, if you want to pursue music, it’s so readily accessible and available now, you know, through YouTube, through videos, through all this stuff. Like, there’s so many outlets now to kinda learn from and gain knowledge from. So I think it’s more often than not that someone has, you know, some sort of hobby like this. Maybe it’s not music, but something that they’re pursuing and still, you know, pursuing a a full time career. So Yeah.

John Garrett [00:18:54]:
Or even if it’s just going to concerts. I mean, that counts too. You know? Like, I mean, why not? We need those people. If everyone was on stage, it’d be a weird show. So, like, we need fans. Like, alright. Like, it’s yeah. No.

John Garrett [00:19:04]:
That that’s incredible, man. And and are there things that Beam does to encourage people to not just have their hands, but to share them?

Michael Berthold [00:19:13]:
Yeah. Of course. You know, that’s we’re putting together different kind of spotlights of of our professionals and that sort of thing where it’s where do you find your balance? What do you do in your free time? Like, if you weren’t an accountant, what would you be? Like, those are some of the first questions that we ask people that wanna join the platform. Yeah. Because that’s that’s what’s important. Right? Is the personality and, you know, who you are as a person, not just as this professional that’s that’s doing work. Right?

John Garrett [00:19:37]:

Michael Berthold [00:19:38]:
So that’s that’s every conversation that that I’ve really been in around being, it kinda starts with those things. It doesn’t start with, you know, what have you done technically and and all this stuff. Right.

John Garrett [00:19:47]:

Michael Berthold [00:19:47]:
That’s the follow-up stuff, but the important stuff is like, who are you? You know, I want to get to know you and have a good time.

John Garrett [00:19:54]:
Yeah. No. I mean, God bless. Like, I mean, that’s crazy. Like, have a good time at work. What are you doing for 90,000 hours of your life?

Michael Berthold [00:20:03]:
Why do we have to feel guilty for that?

John Garrett [00:20:04]:
Right? No. That’s that’s what’s nuts about it. It’s like imagine you had friends at the place where you’re at most of your life, you know, like, in people that actually genuinely had an interest in you and cared about you and and, you know, were like, you know, hey, Michael. Like, when was your last show? What’s the new song you’re working on? Like, that’s they know you, not just the work, you know, and that’s that’s so incredible. And, like, when I speak to, you know, groups and conferences and all that it’s, you know, value the worker as much as you value the work. You know? Value Michael as Michael, not just as, you know, accountant widget guy, you know, or whatever. You know? Like, it’s there’s more to who you are, and that’s so cool that that Bean is a place that’s that’s putting that out in the in the front like that. Yeah.

John Garrett [00:20:48]:
That’s so cool.

Michael Berthold [00:20:49]:
100%. It’s been awesome.

John Garrett [00:20:51]:
Yeah. No. I love it. And so do you have any words of encouragement to anybody that maybe has an and that they think no one cares because it has nothing to do with their job?

Michael Berthold [00:20:59]:
Everyone is unique and has their own talents and and skills that they’re really good at, and it’s a shame if you don’t share those with the world. Right? Yeah. You spend time building whatever it is, getting good at whatever it is. Like, don’t be afraid to put it in front of everyone and and show how good you are at it. Right? Yeah. I think if you hold back, like, the one thing you don’t want is to regret not pursuing something or or not trying it out. Right? Yeah. I guess that that would be my my words of advice.

Michael Berthold [00:21:24]:
Just just be yourself and and be unapologetically yourself. And the people who resonate with that, you know, they’ll be around. They’ll support you. If someone doesn’t, you’ll find the people that do.

John Garrett [00:21:34]:
Yeah. Because, I mean, 99.9% of the time, everybody thinks it’s awesome. You know, in our heads, we tell these lies to ourselves of, oh, they’re gonna judge. Like, never. Like, never. Like, it’s it’s always

Michael Berthold [00:21:47]:
us You’re your own your own biggest critic. Right?

John Garrett [00:21:49]:
Man, terrible. Like, really hard.

Michael Berthold [00:21:51]:
Age old saying.

John Garrett [00:21:52]:
Yeah. My my critic is, like, an MMA champion, and it sounds like not good. He is Beat

Michael Berthold [00:21:59]:
me up.

John Garrett [00:21:59]:
Yeah. He is ruthless, and it is not good. It’s like, dude, I’m trying to sleep. Nope. We’re still going for the throat choke, whatever. I don’t know. It’s like, alright. Stop.

John Garrett [00:22:07]:
But, no, this is so cool, and congrats on everything, man. I I love the music and, you know, just look forward to, you know, keep hearing what you what you put out and and and staying in touch, and and it’s so cool to to have you be a part of this for sure.

Michael Berthold [00:22:20]:
I really, really appreciate it.

John Garrett [00:22:22]:
I I feel like it’s only fair, though, since I started the episode out with peppering you with all those questions, that I turn the tables and make this the the Michael Berthold podcast, and you can probably create your own jingle for your show. But yeah. But thanks for having me on. I’m in the hot seat. So whatever questions you got, I’m all yours.

Michael Berthold [00:22:38]:
John, how’s it going? Thanks for joining me today.

John Garrett [00:22:40]:
Hey, man. The pleasure’s all mine.

Michael Berthold [00:22:42]:
Couple questions for you here. First one to start it off, what’s your favorite comedy club that you’ve ever performed at?

John Garrett [00:22:47]:
Oh, wow. That’s a really good question. Oh, wow. Because there’s definitely some good ones. You know, Go Bananas in Cincinnati is pretty good. The Columbus Funny Bone is good, but the stage was like a little bit off center. For some reason, the OCD in my brain was just like the whole time I was on like, when I would do shows there, it was always like, this is a little off. Like, the angle of something.

John Garrett [00:23:10]:
Like, it was like, those are always fun. I mean, I did some bigger shows like the Borgata in Atlantic City or, you know, like a 1000 people, like, you know, big stuff. But, like, but those comedy rooms that were, like, you know, low ceilings and tight and, like, like the comic strip in New York City was my home club there. And like it just all the energy is there. Like, when you get into those big rooms then, you know, you got to fill that. And with music, it’s a little bit easier to fill that with energy. But with just talking, I mean, it’s hard. And so you get those rooms where everyone’s, like, almost uncomfortably close to each other, and then the ceiling’s low.

John Garrett [00:23:45]:
And, man, then it’s bam. You know? That that energy just just really pops.

Michael Berthold [00:23:49]:
Those intimate settings.

John Garrett [00:23:50]:
Yeah. Yeah. It’s Zany’s downtown Chicago. That’s another fun room as well. Man, those are that’s going back in the days. I guess they’re all Midwest for some reason, but, but, yeah, those were all all fun ones for sure.

Michael Berthold [00:24:01]:
Awesome. Well, next question would be, who’s your your favorite band of all time?

John Garrett [00:24:07]:
Oh, man. That is impossible to answer. I mean, probably the the best show I’ve seen live was The Killers. I mean, they’re out of control live. I mean, it’s it’s just the the music, you know all the songs, but they’re performing. It’s just an experience. It’s it’s just it’s wild. My first concert was Metallica.

John Garrett [00:24:26]:
I grew up midwest, like yeah. Huge Metallica fan. So, I mean, Metallica is always good. Blink 182 is always good. And, yeah, maybe musically not the most whatever, but it’s digestible. And you don’t have to, like, overthink it or over whatever. You just put it on and you laugh and smile and sing along, you know, and they’re they’re just fun. But, yeah, mostly all that, like, hard rock or alternative is is gonna be mostly where I’m at for sure.

Michael Berthold [00:24:55]:
I’m glad blink 182 is back together.

John Garrett [00:24:58]:
Oh, man. And that new album is crazy good.

Michael Berthold [00:25:00]:
Like, they do it on purpose where they’re like, Tom, get out for a while, and then people get, like They’ll attract some aliens and do some weird stuff. Yeah. And then, like, alright. Come back, and then it’s a whole thing. We’re like, now we’re gonna go on a huge tour. I feel like it’s all planned.

John Garrett [00:25:11]:
A couple of years ago, I I was able to catch Angels and Airwaves in Denver, and that was pretty awesome. Yeah. To see Tom doing his thing and all that, and they’re just great. And in their interviews now, I mean, they’ve matured. They’re still silly, but they’ve certainly matured with it all, and they appreciate each other. And, you know, the the new song about just why did we have to go through, you know, a plane crash and throat cancer and, you know, crazy divorce and, like, all these things to, like, have to realize that we care about each other, you know, type of thing. And it’s it’s it’s a deeper thing now, and that’s why I think it comes through in their music.

Michael Berthold [00:25:46]:
For sure. Yeah. No. They’re awesome. Oh, here we go. Yeah. Yeah. Here’s the last one.

Michael Berthold [00:25:51]:
Alright. Yeah. The last one is I’m just taking it back to to to the workplace a little bit.

John Garrett [00:25:55]:
Okay. Okay. My favorite Excel macro. I got tons of them.

Michael Berthold [00:25:58]:
No. No. I’m kidding. What is it?

John Garrett [00:25:59]:
Like, I’m joking. Like, I don’t I’m just kidding.

Michael Berthold [00:26:03]:
Are you a remote or an in person working for, you know

John Garrett [00:26:06]:
Ah, you know, that’s a really good question. And I am a huge advocate of in person, but it needs to matter. Not in person so I can watch you work, but in person so we can actually create human connection. I think on a deeper level, on a tribal level, humans want to be around other humans. I mean, it matters. I mean, we saw that during the pandemic, and and I think that working from home worked during the pandemic because we had already worked around each other. I already knew you. I saw you at a restaurant, and I saw how tall you really are.

John Garrett [00:26:39]:
And I saw, you know, like, what how you act in the office, and I already knew you. It’s like it’s like old college buddies that you don’t see for a while, and then you you talk to them again. And, yeah, of course, we’re friends. I know you. You know? But then all of a sudden, it got weird because people started leaving, new people started coming in. Like, I I never met you. Like, I don’t know. And and organizations weren’t taking time to to just have those informal conversations or, you know, like, those spotlights of, like, your ands, you know, type of things, adult show and tell time, like, whatever it is.

John Garrett [00:27:09]:
But I still think that in person does it have to be 5 days a week, 40 hours? No. But it needs to be some, you know, and even if you’re, like, fully virtual everywhere, you got to come together, I don’t know, 2 to 4 times a year just to, like, get together, hang out. It doesn’t have to be all work. It shouldn’t be. It’s actually, like, getting to know each other. I’m a big fan of of that because I I think working remotely is great, but there’s a loneliness factor that I think a lot of people are in denial about, and that’s, I think, the real pandemic is just just loneliness. I mean, just people are in in Slack channels and social media and all that that does not fill the void of that. So that was a super long answer because I didn’t want everyone to, like, just bomb me.

John Garrett [00:27:54]:
But Sounds

Michael Berthold [00:27:55]:
like you’re a hybrid guy then.

John Garrett [00:27:56]:
Yeah. Hybrid and flexibility. But, you know, we still have jobs to do, I mean, at the end of the day, which I think everyone does. I mean, no no one’s mailing it in on this stuff. We’re all getting our our work done, but there needs to be a connection there because, otherwise, what’s the difference? Like, you know, I mean, you could just get a new laptop with a different, you know, wallpaper logo. Now we got I’m working for somewhere else now. Like, what still in my same, you know, home office or spare bedroom or whatever. So it does matter that you have a connection with people, and and I think it’s on the organization and on leadership to show that they care about you because you’re not going to get that everywhere.

John Garrett [00:28:32]:
And so, you know, you’re going to get it here, and, yeah, hybrid, I guess, is the cop it sounded cop out y, so that’s why I wanted to elaborate.

Michael Berthold [00:28:40]:
I did it for you then.

John Garrett [00:28:41]:
Yeah. No. No. No. I appreciate it. No. No. Absolutely.

John Garrett [00:28:44]:
No. But, that’s a good question, man. You have a good show.

Michael Berthold [00:28:46]:
Hey. Thanks for being on it.

John Garrett [00:28:47]:
Yeah. No. Absolutely. But thank you for being a part of What You Are and also just being a living example of this, of, like, there’s people out there that that have professional careers that have other parts of who they are, and they’re nourishing those. So it’s awesome. So keep up the good work, man.

Michael Berthold [00:29:00]:
Thanks, John. Really, really appreciate you having me. It was a pleasure.

John Garrett [00:29:06]:
Absolutely. And everybody listening, if you wanna see some pictures of Michael on stage or listen to some of his music or connect with him on social media, be sure to go to what’s your am.com. All the links are there. And while you’re in the page, please click that big button, do the anonymous research survey about corporate culture, and don’t forget to read the book. So thanks again for subscribing on Apple Podcasts or whatever app you use and for sharing this with your friends, so they get the message that we’re all trying to spread, that who you are is so much more than what you do.

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