Managing People and Developing Leaders Through Music with John T Madden



Any who has stepped foot inside Spartan Stadium on a football Saturday knows what the Spartan Marching Band is all about.  What most people don't know is the amount of work and intensity that is committed to not only learning the music but also life.


John T Madden has spent the last 26 years on the campus of Michigan State University.  His experiences with the Spartan Marching band has put him on the field and courtside for some of the biggest sporting events in the world. 


"Traditions are great, good traditions are better"


More importantly he has had a first hand look into the ever changing social culture of a college campus. We talk about the different traditions associated with the marching band and also how he deals with hazing within his team.


Johnis in charge of a 300 person team of both men and women and has continued to develop ways of teaching them not only about music and performing but also about how to be good people.


We had great conversation where John shares how they set up their organization chart and how the band is very similar to how most businesses are set up.    John shares how the band views themselves very similar to how the basketball/football teams view themselves.


I could've talked with John for a couple hours about how they create arrangements and teach 300 people to work in unison.  He has a great outlook on leadership and development and I really enjoyed the time I got to spend with him. 


"Teach people how to think, that's the goal at all levels"


Topics covered in this episode:


Developing leaders


Managing people


Music Credit: Link by IllegalCarrot Click Here and the Spartan Marching Band State FanFare 2007