30 Days of Greatness- Jay Z

May 1. 2014

I’m inspired to write a daily blog for the month of May highlighting 30 of the greatest leaders, visionaries, innovators, rebels and change makers of all time. My hope is that it will help take my life, business and purpose to another level and that the same will happen for you.

For each of these men, women and groups I’ll be reading articles, watching videos & documentaries.

I’m not starting with a list, instead I welcome your suggestions. Today I’m starting with Jay Z a man who I’m deeply fascinated about and someone who has inspired me to new heights.

Jay Z has had a fascinating life and career. Check out this great interview about Jay and I recommend subscribing to the youtube channel JayZ Life+Times

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30 Biggest Lessons from Jay Z

  1. Find your genius level talent & believe in your genius level talent!

  2. He crafts his art from the streets, he’s organic and he’s real

  3. His music has depth, he is a true artist

  4. You don’t change who you are, you don’t change the core values of who you are, but you do change! You have to change in order to go to the next level. People who were with you in the beginning wont be able to accept that- they change not you.

  5. When he was the president of Def Jam he always remained true to the core of “Roc-a-fella Records” his own label, this taught him tha importance of playing in the corporate world and the artistic world.

  6. He has an ability to blend his art with business

  7. He’s not a businessman hes a Business, man! (Personal brand= Legacy> currency)

  8. He didn’t get started in the game until he was in his 26 and sold records out of his car

  9. He’s a serial collaborator- he’s worked with the biggest names in the world and has launched many of them. Kanye West, Timberland, JT, Beyonce, Pharrell Williams, Alicia Keys, Eminem the list goes on.

  10. Do things that are True to you- Most things that i’m involved in are an extension of my creativity.

  11. Have a standard for yourself & Integrity

  12. Write in a notebook

  13. In his first show he forgot  his lyrics- doesn’t matter where you start just keep hustling!

  14. He is inspired to make the extraordinary things ordinary

  15. People make emotional decisions- they don’t stick with what they know. Trust yourself!

  16. He was turned down by every single record label when he started, his response “What do they know” I’ll go make it on my own and Roc-A-Fella records was created.

  17. As a leader you have the responsibility to leave the world better than when you found it!

  18. You know you’ve become a star, when others make you a target!

  19. Live if about balance- work & play

  20. You need Talent + Drive to be successful!

  21. He records for himself and the money comes after (that’s $500 Million dollar worth of records)

  22. His relationship with superstar Beyonce has been very private, choosing to let his art be the main talking point (rare in a media rich society where people sell their weddings and baby photos to tabloids)

  23. He’s been shot at 3 time

  24. His life has two main stories- the story of a Rapper and the story of a Hustler. Use your past to propel you forward.

  25. There’s a weight that comes to success “Do you have the power to get out from up under you“. You must deal without the expectations of your past and your success

  26. Keep pushing the genre forward, don’t rely on the old gimmicks. Keep growing and pushing your craft.

  27. In business you need great instincts, on the streets instincts are the difference between life and death.

  28. Be a man of your word!

  29. He’s interested in partnership not just one off promotion. He builds long term relationships and always retains creative control!

  30. The difference is between success in failure is Opportunity & Drive

Today is Day 1. More tomorrow. If you have a suggestion on someone comment below.


Peace out


Calvin “Jay Z” Coyles