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REIA 166 Rod Bourn: Your Most Powerful, Underutilized Asset

Rod Bourn is the founder and Lead Ninja of Down Set Lead; a strategic consulting group focused on helping organizations grow their business and people through coaching, training, mentoring.

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Main Points:

  • Your success is for you to define
  • Your greatest untapped resource is a power within a power that continues to replicate itself if you want it to
  • In the hero’s quest, the most important plot point is finding the helper
  • In both your personal and professional life, that helper is best played as a mentor
  • Your mentor should be someone who can guide you to the next level, not necessarily to the end-all
  • Understand that a mentor does receive benefit from the relationship
  • When you’ve learned all you can from that mentor, move onto the next
  • That moving on will expand your network, exposing you to more helpers, resources, and eventually your next mentor
  • Karma dictates you pay-it-forward, so look for that younger person who also wants to get better

Connect with Rod:


Biography of Rod Bourn:

With a passion to improve people and organizations, Rod has worked in organizational development and leadership programming positons in a variety of industries including manufacturing, services, and higher education.

Rod is the founder and Lead Ninja of Down, Set, Lead; a strategic consulting group focused on helping organizations grow their business and people through coaching, training and mentoring. He is also the Project Director for Goldman Sachs’ 10,000 Small Businesses program in Baltimore.

Rod’s career started in HR and included progressive positions at London Fog, USF&G Insurance, Renaissance Hotels, and Rite Aid.  He then spent 14 years as the Coordinator of Organizational and Professional Development at Harford Community College, where he designed, coordinated and delivered professional training; planned and facilitated professional conferences; and ran two professional associations: the Susquehanna Professional Association of Nonprofits (SPAN) and the Susquehanna Human Resource Association (SHRA). 

In the community Rod serves as a mentor and coach; he is the former President and a current board member of the MA & PA Heritage Trail Foundation; and in 2008 founded Anna’s Guys, a collection of men who work with abused and sheltered children.  He also founded and oversees the annual Catch A Pig 5k, having raising over $50k for the local Boys & Girls Clubs.         

He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration at Towson University, and a Masters of Organizational Development from Johns Hopkins University.  He was voted commencement speaker for his Harford Leadership Academy class.

Rod is a native Marylander and enjoys various outdoor activities, traveling and gastronomic pursuits.  He now lives in Baltimore and tries to keep pace with his wife Kim, a psychotherapist, and their two kids.