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Catalyst MINDS Features Dylan Conroy: Maximize the Value of Relationships

Entertainment entrepreneur puts a winning focus on what bonds people as humans

Catalyst for Thought is a local nonprofit organization with a goal to advance the community by educating and motivating individuals to create, develop and act on their entrepreneurial ideas. Through its MINDS series, Catalyst for Thought seeks to create a unique synergy between featured speakers and a small group of local entrepreneurs to empower each individual to help create solutions that affect society and inspire others.

“It’s better to burn out than to fade away.”

This quote by Neil Young happens to be one of Dylan Conroy’s favorites, and after hearing the charismatic and successful entrepreneur speak recently to an intimate group of 12 about maximizing the value of relationships, it’s obvious that they’re words he lives by.

Conroy earned a bachelor’s degree in film and New Media from UCSB, then went on to earn a certificate of entertainment, public relations and screenwriting from UCLA, and is a graduate of the prestigious Act One screenwriters program. Conroy attributes his passion for learning to people.

Dylan Conroy
Dylan Conroy

“I love learning peoples’ stories,” Conroy said. “Those stories are what bond us together and allow us to create meaningful relationships. Listen to people’s stories and find the gem to latch on to; find that reason to care.”

This passion for people and their stories has been a driving force behind Conroy’s successful career in the entertainment industry. After graduating from UCSB, Conroy began to build his network by working for some of the top names in entertainment: Howard Bragman, Phil Rosenthal, Mark Cronin, Ivan Reitman and Oprah Winfrey.

“When you first meet someone,” said Conroy, “don’t focus on what you can get from them. Focus on what bonds you as humans.”

This is a lesson he said he learned early on, yet one major obstacle was clear from the beginning.

“How do I put this into effect in Hollywood, where relationships are traded like poker chips?” he remarked.

Conroy worked hard to develop his craft in creating meaningful relationships — a talent that has served him well throughout his career. He’s worked as a segment producer for Winfrey’s TV show The Big Give; started an Internet company, FlashCity.com; and was an associate producer/financier at Strata Productions, where he managed a large base of equity partners who invested in independent films.

Conroy is currently working for one of his all-time business heroes, Keith Ferrazzi, author of the bestselling book Never Eat Alone. He heads the West Coast sales for Ferrazzi Greenlight, and is working to create velocity for furthering the Relationships Master Academy.

“Be purposeful and be transparent with your intentions and objectives,” Conroy advised. “You can’t fake generosity. If you’re genuine and there’s value on both sides, then it’s a win-win.”

To further understand the importance of this statement, Conroy recommended reading The Referral Code: Unlock a Constant Stream of Business Through the Power of Your Relationships, by Larry Pinci and Phil Glosserman.

At the end of the luncheon, each person was given the opportunity to introduce themselves and talk a bit about their jobs, projects and passions. After going around the table it was clear that in this room alone, there were numerous valuable relationships just waiting to be cultivated. By the looks of excitement on each face, it was obvious that Conroy’s message was already being put into effect.

Click here for more information about Catalyst for Thought. Connect with Catalyst for Thought on Facebook. Follow Catalyst on Twitter: @CatalystSB.

— Carolyn Turner is a writer for Catalyst for Thought and works at Avalan Wealth Management as its client care director.

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