Tim Pernetti, President, IMG Academy | Bloomberg TV, July 29, 2023


Tim Pernetti, the President of IMG Academy, sits with New to The Street Leadership 101’s co-hosts, Matt Doherty and Jane King. The interview takes place at the Nasdaq MarketSite Studios, where Tim talks about his leadership experiences gained throughout his career. Learning what works and what doesn’t, being fully transparent about objectives, and communicating effectively with those around you are Tim’s basis in his philosophy in being a great leader. Launching CSTV, a college sports network, and becoming the athletic director at his alma mater, Rutgers University, are keystone events in Tim’s career. The excitement of launching a cable college sports network and then realizing how the successful sports TV platform became brought joy and challenges for him as an executive leader. His TV production success landed him a position as Athletic Director at Rutgers University, where he successfully transformed the sports program and was instrumental in the University becoming a Big Ten Conference school. Even with great success comes great disappointment, Tim shares that even downward actions are learnable events. When Rutgers University fired him shortly after successfully placing the University on the Big Ten, Tim was angry and sad about the school’s board decision. His firing was a national news event, and Tim was unsure if his sports career was final. Arriving home, many newscasters waited to interview him regarding Rutgers’s decision; Tim didn’t express his anger but humbled himself and told reporters how sad this day was for him. Within 8-hours of being fired, Tim found a new job. He told viewers that sharing his disappointment wholeheartedly on national TV without playing the blame game enabled him to land his current position with IMG Academy. IMG Academy is a preparatory boarding school and sports training destination in Bradenton, Florida. In March 2020, Tim started to work with over 1000 employees daily, communicating his objectives for the academy. A successful leader must manage expectations, listen, ask questions, and be approachable. His leadership includes an open-door policy and accountability for himself and those who work at the academy. Tim believes hiring great people who want to take his job creates a motivated working culture that breeds success for everyone. Great leaders allow employees to make comprehensive decisions, trusting them in their abilities to succeed. As such, under Tim’s leadership role, IMG Academy launched an online coaching presence, IMG+ Coaching, helping student-athletes globally. The academy has national recognition from top private and public universities. Working with parents who invested in their children’s athletic and academic successes is a different environment from his past positions, and Tim always listens to the needs of parents and helps manage their expectations of their students’ efforts. Tim’s success at IMG Academy comes from his years of experience, which enable him to provide a leadership role that energizes those who work for him. After looking back on his “50-Yard Walk” with newscasters at his home after being fired at Rutgers, Tim feels that experiencing failures also provides a more vital understanding of a leadership role. Reality and those failures that occur should never be a deterrent to success. Tim’s leadership journey is impressive.

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