I regularly look around at all the talented women in the world building inspired, successful, creative businesses and feel so blessed to live in an era where there is so much female empowerment is on display.
It can be easy to get caught up by all of the world’s injustices (the gender pay gap, the lack of women in government etc). And those are worthy focuses of our attention. But it also shouldn’t be forgotten that we’re currently spoilt for choice when it comes to female role models.
And if you’re searching for someone to give you a kick of inspiration, you’ve come to the right place. Because here are 5 inspirational business podcasts to listen to right now – all telling the stories of incredible, powerful women.
How I Built This: Episode #1
Spanx: Sara Blakely
The Lowdown: Here are two remarkable things you need to know about Spanx founder Sara Blakely. One: she’s never taken a business class. Two: She still owns 100% of her company and was the youngest self-made woman to join the Forbes World Billionaires list.
So, how did Sara Blakely do it? In this episode of How I Built This, host Guy Raz speaks to Sara about the idea behind Spanx, how she developed the product in secret whilst still working her day job, and the struggles she faced getting Spanx manufactured and into department stores.
It’s honesty the most incredible story! And I’ve noticed that Sara and Reese Witherspoon have been hanging out lately, so I’m hoping there could soon be a Reese-Witherspoon-produced movie about the Spanx story. I’d be first in line to watch it…
Sample Soundbite: “I thought, I don’t have the most money. I don’t have a business degree. I have no idea what I’m doing in manufacturing or retail or any of this. But I do care the most, so let’s see what happens.”
The Lifestyle Edit Podcast: Episode #3
Finding Your Extraordinary with Stella & Dot CEO, Jessica Herrin
The Lowdown: After meeting Stella & Dot CEO Jessica Herrin, last year, she quickly became one of my business role models. Jessica has such an incredible back-story. She co-founded a wedding-gift registry website at 24-years-old (which she eventually sold for $78million), and launched the jewellery business Stella & Dot whilst she was pregnant with her first daughter. She is also insanely lovely and so down-to-earth!
Naomi Mdudu talks to Jessica about her entrepreneurial journey in this episode of The Lifestyle Edit Podcast. Jessica’s drive, work ethic and relatable story are sure to inspire. And the episode is packed with valuable advice and wisdom that can be applied to your working life.
Sample Soundbite: “[The wedding registry business] was commercially successful, but it taught me my first great lesson in life and business, which is: you can create commercial success without creating true success. True success puts happiness in your heart and peace in your mind – not just money in a bank account.”
Happier with Gretchen Rubin: Episode #114
An Interview with Hollywood Legend Sherry Lansing
The Lowdown: Happier isn’t a podcast that I typically turn to for career advice or inspirational business stories. However, earlier in the year they welcomed former Hollywood studio executive, Sherry Lansing, onto the show and it was audio gold!
Before retiring to dedicate her life to philanthropy, Sherry Lansing was CEO of Paramount Pictures and president of production at 20th Century Fox. She spent her entire career working in a highly-competitive, male-dominated world, but hasn’t let that experience harden her. In fact, she presents such a healthy, level-headed outlook, and proves you can be ambitious and successful without sacrificing your morals or sanity. It’s a must-listen!
(FYI: skip ahead to the 17 minute mark to get to Sherry’s interview, if you don’t wish to listen to the full episode).
Sample Soundbite: “Don’t look to other people and say, ‘Do I have enough?’ If you think you have enough, you have enough. So don’t compare yourself to others.”
The Smart Passive Income Podcast: Episode #205
How Simple Green Smoothies Used “Challenges” to Grow from 0 to 200k Subscribers in a Year
The Lowdown: This episode is ideal for any bloggers or online business owners out there. Smart Passive Income’s Pat Flynn speaks to Jadah Sellner, co-founder of Simple Green Smoothies, to unpick the strategies used to build the Simple Green Smoothies mailing list.
If you’re not familiar with Simple Green Smoothies, here’s the lowdown: Jadah and her business partner Jen started the @simplegreensmoothies Instagram account in 2012, and in less than six months they had 30K followers. They then used challenge-incentives to build their email marketing list, which grew from 0 to 200K in under a year. Jadah reveals exactly how they did it in this fascinating podcast.
Sample Soundbite: “I had a friend who had a brick and mortar business and she told me, ‘You have to be willing to pivot to what the market wants.’ So I’ve always jumped into entrepreneurship by being super-flexible and open to moving where the needs are.”
Let’s Discuss: Episode #14
Chloé Watts, founder of Chloédigital on how to overcome fear in life and business
The Lowdown: And, last but not least, a little something from the Let’s Discuss podcast… Earlier this year, Monica and I welcomed our good friend Chloé Watts onto the show to talk about her business, chloédigital.
Chloé and her talented team of developers provide strategic planning and tech support for the world’s leading style publishers. And we sat down with Chloé to talk about the fears that arise when you begin to scale your business and manage a team. We’ve always thought of Chloé as the most fearless, go-getting entrepreneur. However, she revealed she does feel scared from time-to-time, but has learnt how to manage those anxieties. It’s an incredibly inspiring, truthful conversation!
Sample Soundbite: “I feel scared all the time, but I just keep doing it. You have to keep pushing through it.”
Will you be rushing to check out these inspirational business podcasts? And do you have any recommendations of your own? If so, please leave a comment below. I’m always looking for new shows/episodes to download…
Photos by Marlene Lee