Have you ever ever failed at one thing?
For some time in late 2020, we had been failing fairly onerous at creating a brand new podcast.
Final fall, the SPI Media Content material workforce (yours actually and senior content material supervisor Karen Beattie) and Podcasts workforce (senior producer Sara Jane Hess and producer David Grabowski) put our heads collectively to brainstorm concepts for a brand new present.
Our mission was thrilling however daunting: to provide you with a compelling podcast idea, one thing that might stand astride our flagship reveals, the Smart Passive Income Podcast and AskPat 2.0, but in addition stand by itself. We needed to create one thing new and totally different. Some recent vitality that match the model but in addition expanded it. And naturally, one thing our viewers could be excited to tune in to.
No presh, proper? Right here’s how the method unfolded.
Take 1: A New Spin on an Outdated Thought
Our first concept was a present the place we interviewed on a regular basis entrepreneurs and specialists in regards to the candy—and generally bittersweet—highway to success.
We thought of answering questions like: What does success imply? How do you discover it? Why is it generally so elusive? How does it really feel if you lastly get it? And what occurs if you lose it?
Yeah, success tales aren’t precisely a novel idea. However we figured if we approached the topic from sufficient fascinating angles, we might do one thing cool with it. We thought we had one thing.
So we set to work making a take a look at script for a pilot episode, primarily based largely on snippets from interviews we’d finished earlier that summer time for a sequence of entrepreneurial success story weblog posts.
Having these interviews to work with gave us a lift, and we threw collectively the script fairly rapidly.
Our very first take a look at script: the making of the sausage.
However the script felt, properly, stitched-together. And greater than that, we realized we simply weren’t that jazzed in regards to the idea. Success is superior! We simply weren’t certain we had quite a lot of new issues to say about it.
So we stored brainstorming.
Take 2: The COVID Diaries
Our subsequent concept was a present about how entrepreneurs are coping, surviving, and perhaps even (gulp) thriving via the havoc COVID-19 has wreaked on our lives and companies.
As soon as once more, we dipped into our success story interviews for materials. The coronavirus pandemic was (unsurprisingly) a theme in all of these interviews, so we had a good quantity of content material to create a take a look at script once more.
This time, we felt like we had one thing a little bit extra centered to work with. Possibly this concept’s bought legs! We used our take a look at script to document a take a look at episode, full with intro music, to see how the idea would land in our ears.
Aaaand it landed form of flat.
As we discovered with the primary take a look at script, utilizing bits of interviews we might recorded for a special function and piecing them along with new commentary simply didn’t lead to a extremely compelling piece of podcasting.
And with issues altering so rapidly on the epidemiological entrance, we additionally puzzled if the COVID focus would cut back the podcast’s shelf life. (COVID clearly hasn’t disappeared but, so perhaps the priority was ill-founded, however it’s what we thought on the time.)
All the things thought-about, a COVID-focused podcast didn’t seize us the best way we needed it to, so it was again to the drafting board.
Take 3: Getting Nearer! (Or Are We?)
We tossed out another concepts. We workshopped them, and even got here up with outlines of what a season of every of these reveals would possibly appear like.
However the upshot was—for varied causes—we both didn’t really feel excited sufficient about, or prepared to show any of these concepts right into a podcast proper now.
(You’ll discover I didn’t share any specifics, as a result of we’d nonetheless flip a few of these ideas right into a podcast some day!)
So we marched on.
Take 4: Flops Arrives
Then we bought to excited about our unique concept: success. Possibly we’ve bought it precisely backward. What if we flip the script and discuss failure as a substitute?
And thus Flops was born.
What’s Flops? I’ll let the trailer do the speaking:
Our imaginative and prescient with Flops is to current an trustworthy portrait of entrepreneurial failure in its quite a few kinds. Season 1 options interviews with entrepreneurs who’ve failed huge ultimately, together with tales of failure from current and not-so-recent historical past, in enterprise and past—together with some visitor cameos that reveal a lighter facet of failure.
It could sound cliché, however failure actually places issues in perspective. It’s superb what individuals can stand up to and bounce again from.
In season 1 of Flops, we discuss to a couple of entrepreneur who misplaced six figures, one whose new enterprise bought precisely zero shoppers, and one other whose first retail product was bleeding cash whereas she battled most cancers.
These three entrepreneurs bounced again in several methods, whereas others we spoke with are nonetheless struggling to search out their footing. We need to present the messy, unvarnished facet of failure, as a result of failure is to be anticipated. Failure is human. And it could change your life irrevocably, generally for the higher, and generally not. What actually issues is what you do with that failure.
So say hi there to Flops. We hope it doesn’t fail, as a result of we consider these tales are helpful to listen to—and that we’ve put collectively a podcast that tells them in a reasonably compelling method.
But when Flops does fail, properly, we’ll mud ourselves off and take a look at once more.