Business Books, Podcasts, and a Bold Future

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Ever since I read Moneyball and found myself in the grip of my first of many genius drama-meets-business Michael Lewis stories, I’ve been a bit obsessed with business books. And articles about business. And podcasts about business.

 

Sure, now I own a business. But before I wrote a business plan and started an LLC, I read a lot about other what other people thought about running businesses — and I’ve come back to that advice and those ideas again and again. Sometimes I reject their ideas; sometimes I accept them; usually I adapt them. But I always learn from them.

 

So it’s not really a surprise that I binge-listened to Bold Future, a new Birmingham podcast that profiles local business leaders. (Business podcast + local Birmingham business = right up my alley.) I’d heard about Bold Future since it began, but it wasn’t until Jeremy asked me to be interviewed for it that I actually listened.

 

I’m so glad that I did listen. Jeremy’s doing a great job getting really good information out of all of us who go on his program — he’s somehow able to get us to open up not only about our successes, but also about our failures and our weaknesses. Failure is certainly a key part of doing business, so it’s important that it be part of the conversation, but as business owners we’re used to sharing only high-performing, press-ready parts of our stories. We’re trained to talk about only the bright futures of our business, but boldness requires something more — it requires that we examine what didn’t work as well as what did, and it demands that we evaluate our sacrifices and ask ourselves if they’re worth it.

 

I’m glad Jeremy’s asking the right questions and that he’s getting us to open up about the truth of our business stories. I hope it gives all of us, not just future business leaders, ideas about how we can engage with our lives, our careers and our futures a little more boldly. Click here to listen to the Localist interview with Bold Future.

 

Carrie Rollwagen is author of The Localist: Think Independent, Buy Local and Reclaim the American Dream, creator of 30 Days of Local Praise and co-founder of Church Street Coffee & Books. Find her on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter @crollwagen.

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