tcp conversation series | Kevin Y. B. | building confidence

Kevin works in the expert industry and is the CEO of Legacy thinking labs - an empowerment company that engages and trains clients through multi-media. Additionally, he is the host of his own radio show and facilitates online programs that teaches students on how to attend college. He is also a notable global public speaker on various topics. Let's see what he has to say about building confidence.

tcp: Where are you originally from and where do you currently reside? 

kevin: I grew up in Vallejo, California and went to college in Atlanta and been living in New York City for 8 years. 

tcp: We have witnessed you speak to crowds in the hundreds if not thousands. That has to take a lot of self-confidence to be able to speak to so many people at once. Simply put, what is confidence to you and why is it so important?

kevin: Confidence is important, because when nobody else believes in you and everyone else is gone it's up to you to empower yourself. You have to know it's important to build your confidence by doing what you say you are going to do. You have to let everything roll in order to accomplish your goal. I am the brand that I say I am. You have to find a way and make it happen. Find a way or make a way for yourself. Confidence is the belief in yourself.  It’s self-belief, reassurance, and the conversation that you have with yourself when you are saying you can do it. Additionally, it’s the non-verbal. Your presence alone should let someone know that you are self-assured. A person with a lot of confidence usually does not have to do a lot of talking. Confidence comes through preparation and being prepared for the opportunity when it comes. 

tcp: Regarding college students who fit the corporate criteria of a diversity candidate, speaking in general terms, do you believe our young men and women possess the type of confidence needed to obtain and retain desirable internship and full time opportunities during and right after their college years?

kevin: Absolutely, the students that are prepared at least, have the confidence to be successful through preparation. It’s alright to go in without all of the confidence. Students must stick to it and stay dedicated to it. Learn the task even if you do not know what you are doing at first. Being humble enough to ask for mentors and being able to ask for things in order to propel. Confidence comes with humility and being able to ask for help when needed. 

tcp: How do we build confidence and what level of focus is required to do so?

kevin: You build confidence by doing what you are saying you are going to do. The level of focus is laser. Keep doing the same things that make you successful over and over again. It can be small successes over time. Additionally, students should try to mimic the people who came before them acquiring certain jewels from them. You have to be able to honestly critique yourself, humbly ask for mentors and keep working at it. The work never stops and you should beevolving everyday. Once someone puts in the work, nobody can take that away from you. 

tcp: There is this on-going dialogue comparing confidence and cockiness. How would you describe each in relation to the other?

kevin: Confidence is being self-assured, because you have done the work necessary to have pride. That can be anything from light work, schoolwork, or work at the job. Cockiness is when someone has to spew it on to someone else. You have to throw your weight around by telling someone else who you are. A cocky person has to make other people feel lesser than who they are to make themselves feel better. In short, everyone should be treated the same. 

tcp: Are there any shared experiences/history a group of people can relate to that promotes individualistic confidence (ie.- I’m resilient because my ancestors endured slavery.”)?

kevin: I take a lot of pride in being African American. When they took the Africans from Africa they only took the strongest. Then the strongest survived their boat ride to their destination. Then for 260 years only the strongest survived. When you think about the shoulders that you are standing on it has created our current generations. I take a lot of pride of being a descendent of those people. 

tcp: If you had the opportunity to share one piece of advice to a college student who fits the corporate criteria of a diversity candidate, what would it be?

kevin: Know what your long-term goal is and remain focused and committed to seeing it through until the end.