They say it takes a village to raise a child. For most up-and-coming entrepreneurs, a new business is no different. Every business needs a voice of reason, like the guiding hand of a parent. Sometimes they need more than one.
You may have a teacher, like an old friend, on speed dial. Maybe you never met the right one, or you can’t remember the name of that brilliant professor who certainly shaped at least half of your current worldview. Fortunately, (or, in some cases, unfortunately) today, we are inundated with information: television, internet, schooling, etc. You can find tutorials on almost anything on youtube, but one resource that’s continuing to rise in popularity is the podcast. Podcasts are almost like a friendly lecture, hosted by one or more persons who thrive on a specific topic, and want to share their information with the world. Their listeners are like their friends, their peers, rather than the glaring schoolmarm who smacks the ruler on your desk when you doze off.
You can find podcasts on virtually every eclectic and esoteric concept out there, so it’s no surprise there are so many for business owners. Sifting through all those resources can be a headache, so we’ve picked 5 of our favorites to start you off.
Even if your business is already past the ‘startup’ phase, there’s plenty more to learn from Gimlet Media’s StartUp podcast. If 1,000,000 listeners each month doesn’t give them credibility, nothing will. This podcast is hosted by Alex Blumberg, former producer of This American Life, and Lisa Chowformer editor of FiveThirtyEight. It even attracted the attention of Zach Braff, who based the upcoming sitcom, Alex Inc., on Gimlet Media’s podcast. Season one clues listeners into how Gimlet Media got its first day, bringing on partners, and naming their brand. Subsequent seasons pick apart other businesses so as to look with a closer lens at the lifeblood of successful companies.
“A man becomes self-made the moment he decides to shape his world, rather than be shaped by it. It is a spark… a decision… an internal will that can never be given by another, and that can never be purchased or borrowed.” So says Mike Dillard, founder of the Self-Made Man podcast. There are dozens of episodes specifically involving business tactics, but there are also episodes on health, time management, and other self-care topics to help you improve as a person. And as everyone knows, your business is only as strong as you are. With several guests on board to chat about their successes (and what they achieved from their so-called failures), Self-Made Man will improve more than just your business.
There’s tons of resources aimed at men who want to start up their own businesses, but let’s face it: there’s not a lot geared towards women in the business world, which is a shame, because women are really taking over in the small business arena. This podcast is part of the Australian Businesswoman’s Network, so you’ll find a lot of resources working towards the goal of getting women off the ground with the boost they need.
Speaking of having a brilliant teacher on speed dial...why not two? Neil Patel and Eric Siu won’t bite. As experts in digital marketing, they have plenty of wisdom to share they’ve accrued in their own ventures. And with an episode about using emojis, you know that they’ve got the latest in what people want to see.
And with only ten minute “classes,” isn’t it just about the best school there is?
This podcast was inspired by a tweet from Steve Sammartino: “What most people confuse with famous school drop outs [Gates, Jobs, Picasso et al] is that they never dropped out of learning.” Co-host Sean Callanan had begun only one project at that point, his Sports Geek Podcast, but the response to it has been overwhelmingly positive, and it only keeps growing. They clue you into what ideas will and won’t work, which is good for ambitious new entrepreneurs.
Even sole practitioners often find that in the world of business, it’s best not to go it alone. Fortunately, you don’t have to! There are countless resources available for business owners, whether it’s the helpful advice of a podcast host who’s been there or support with your business’s bookkeeping. So, don’t be afraid to take a chance and start your own business, but when the time comes, don’t be afraid to reach out for help, either.