A war has been waging throughout the philosophical and psychological community for centuries.

Not a war with muskets, armored artillery, or laser guns, but more like professors throwing textbooks at one another and jabbing intellectual foes with concise essays and pointed papers of poignant arguments.

I’m talking about the nature versus nurture problem, which is the debate about whether human behavior is determined by genes (nature) or environment (nurture).

The answer isn’t so black and white, but needless to say, many people are born with innate talent and skill.

One of those people is Michael Chernow, who I’m excited to bring onto this episode of the podcast. 

He hosts a podcast called Born Or Made, which explores this nature or nurture question through the stories of incredibly successful entrepreneurs and thought leaders.

Michael is one of these success stories himself, though. Not only is he a trained chef who hosted the TV show Food Porn, but he’s started several thriving restaurant businesses, including The Meatball Shop (with 8 locations) and Seamore’s (a sustainable seafood restaurant). 

As a repeat success in the restaurant industry, Michael hasn’t just “gotten lucky,” but knows how to build effective brands and businesses. 

In this conversation, Michael and I chat about . . .

  • How he turned his life around from drugs, alcohol, and an abusive household
  • How much talent matters versus deliberate practice and conscientiousness
  • The skill of meeting new people and building relationships and networks
  • Why you don’t have to be good at everything
  • Effective communication and “how to win friends”
  • The power of branding and knowing how to sell
  • How he transitions a business concept and vision into reality
  • His best cooking hacks (including how to make food tastier and the ultimate hack to eat healthier)
  • And more . . .

So if you want to learn from a “serial entrepreneur” what it takes to build a compelling brand and successful business, listen to this podcast! 

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8:18 – Do you think talent is earned or are people born with it?

12:03 – How did your talent help you get out of tough situations?

14:30 – What are your thoughts on the saying “talent isn’t formed by 10,000 hours but instead deliberate practice”?

24:21 – What do you mean when you say you can acclimate easily to people?

35:42 – What part of your process is most responsible for your success with multiple businesses?

44:41 – How do you know what ideas to follow through with? Do you just follow your instinct or is there a process you go through?

54:05 – Once you have a bunch of ideas and concepts, is it an editorial process from there?

1:22:10 – Are you creating restaurants that you would like to go to?

1:27:15 – Any tips or hacks for cooking better food?

Mentioned on the show: 

Michael Chernow’s Podcast (Bord Or Made)

Michael Chernow’s Instagram

Michael Chernow’s Twitter

Michael Chernow’s Website

Books by Mike Matthews

What did you think of this episode? Have anything else to share? Let me know in the comments below!