PODCAST: 3 Things with Colonel Chris Hadfield

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by CEO Ric Elias

I’m Ric Elias, one of the luckiest people you’ll ever meet. I was lucky enough to survive a plane crash – and to share on the TED stage 3 things I learned from that experience.  Now I’m sharing conversations I feel lucky to have had with remarkable people – plus 3 things we can all take away from each.

Today my guest is former commander of the International Space Station and world-famous astronaut, Colonel Chris Hadfield. During his last trip to space in 2013, he posted dozens of videos and photos which went viral and turned him into a celebrity.  On the 3 Things Podcast, we spoke about the pace of progress in space exploration, and when humans can expect to start living on the moon.

Listen to the full episode, and let me know if you agree with my summary below:

3 Things I Learned:

1) While progress since we landed on the moon 50 years ago may seem slow – we are actually on the precipice of some remarkable things. Like the ability to harness gravity, and to live on the moon. That is amazing.

2) For all the fears around computers taking over the world, it will be computational power and machine learning that provide the missing piece for space exploration.  Technology is opening up entirely new opportunities for the human race. I can’t wait.

3) What will stick with me most is what we learned from Neil Armstrong and my personal hero – Captain Sullenburger – around leadership. Anyone can claim to be a leader when things are going well, but true leadership is about preparing for the inevitable time when things go wrong.

In fact, this conversation with Chris came at a perfect time for me – just 1 week before I  met Captain Sully in person, for the first time since he saved my life. I had the great honor of introducing him at an event hosted by our TPG team in New York, and I feel lucky to have had that opportunity to share some of what I learned from Chris that night:

via The Points Guy “TPG Awards” – December 4th, 2018 

Thanks again to Chris for a fascinating, insightful conversation, and thank you to Captain Sullenberger for his leadership. He gave me an incredible gift on January 15th, 2009 – exactly 10 years ago today – and I am forever grateful.

I’m curious what YOU learned from this conversation. Let me know your thoughts by connecting with me directly on Twitter @RicElias, and please join us next week to hear from Nobel Peace prize winner Leymah Gbowee. We’ll talk about how she literally turned a dream into a movement that changed the destiny of her country.


(Featured photo by Wes Hicks)


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